The Moor The Merrier?

Benefitz Betty's picture

"A body which manages North York Moors National park is set to send the Government an unequivocal message that some types of fracking must not be granted the same planning leeway as home extensions.

Members of the North York Moors National Park Authority will meet next week to consider its formal response to a consultation announced in May by Business Secretary Greg Clark to help create “the world’s most environmentally robust onshore shale gas sector”.  Mr Clark said steps such as treating non-hydraulic fracturing shale gas exploration schemes as “permitted development”  could streamline the “disappointingly slow” planning process by enabling firms to bypass the need for permission from local planning authorities.

The consultation states any non-hydraulic fracturing – the process of fracturing rock at depth to release gas deposits without the use of fluid pressure – development permitted in this way would still be required to receive consents from the Environment Agency, Health and Safety Executive and the Oil and Gas Authority.

Petrochemicals giant Ineos, which earlier this year refused to rule out planning to frack under the North York Moors, has warned the Government delays in exploiting shale gas is causing Britain to become overly-dependent on imports from Russia and the Middle East.

However, environmentalists have claimed steps outlined in the Government’s consultation, which is due to close on October 25, were akin to “trampling over democracy”.  Meanwhile,  it has been reported at least 20 bankbench Conservative MPs  are willing “to destroy the government’s majority” if ministers seek to push the proposal through parliament.

An officer’s report to the national park authority suggests its response to the Government should be that “a balance needs to be struck between timely decision-making and the need for appropriate scrutiny of development proposals at a local level”.

It warns that the Government’s intention not to apply a new permitted development right in national parks “may not be maintained” and that such schemes outside the national park boundary could give rise to potential impacts within it.

The officer’s report also questions the rationale behind giving permitted development rights to non-hydraulic fracturing.

The document states:

“In terms of the potential for impacts on the environment and local amenity, there is no expectation that exploratory drilling for shale gas would give rise to lesser potential for impacts than exploratory drilling for other forms of hydrocarbons.”"


"Three anti-fracking activists are thought to have become the first environmental campaigners to be jailed for a protest in the UK since 1932.

Simon Roscoe Blevins, 26, and Richard Roberts, 36, were sentenced to 16 months in prison and Richard Loizou, 31, to 15 months on Wednesday after being convicted of causing a public nuisance by a jury at Preston crown court in August. Another defendant, Julian Brock, 47, was given a 12-month suspended sentence after pleading guilty to the same offence.

The four men were charged after taking part in a four-day direct action protest that blocked a convoy of trucks carrying drilling equipment from entering the Preston New Road fracking site near Blackpool.

A hearing at Preston crown court heard how the men would become the first environmental activists to receive jail sentences for a protest in the UK since the mass trespass on Kinder Scout in the Peak District in 1932, which marked the beginning of the right-to-roam movement..."

"The site near Preston New Road has been a focal point for protests since the government overturned a decision by Lancashire county council and gave the energy firm Cuadrilla consent to extract shale gas at two wells on the site in October 2016. More than 300 protesters have been arrested since Cuadrilla began constructing a fracking pad at the site in January 2017.  The company has said that fracking is likely to start in the next few weeks, confirming on Monday that 28 lorries had brought fracking equipment to the site...

"Kirsty Brimelow QC, the head of the international human rights team at Doughty St Chambers, representing Roberts on a pro-bono basis, told the judge it had been a peaceful and political protest. She said the right to freedom of speech went beyond “simply standing and shouting” and extended to non-violent direct action.

Brimelow said the fact that central government had overturned the local council to reject Cuadrilla’s fracking application demonstrated that “political process has been exhausted”.

She said the men were “principled people with genuine and deeply held beliefs”, adding: “It is relevant that there is a huge amount of scientific study that points to the damage of increasing climate emissions.” She pointed to intergovernmental climate panel findings that climate change would displace 75 million people by 2035 and lead to the extinction of one in four species by 2050.

Brimelow added that the judge should bear in mind that “there has been no environmental protester sentenced to jail since 1932”. Activists have been given jail sentences for breaking injunctions and contempt of court, but not for the act of protesting."

"Cuadrilla was awarded 18 new exploration licences, as part of the UK Government’s 14th Round for onshore oil and gas licences. These onshore oil and gas exploration licences, stretch across the Cleveland Basin in East Yorkshire and Gainsborough Trough in South Yorkshire. All the licences total approximately 1274km² in area."

Current activity in these new exploration licence areas is centred on desktop studies. This will give Cuadrilla a very detailed understanding on the geology deep underneath the licence areas, helping to assess where exploration sites can subsequently be located.

"The Bowland Licence ("PEDL 165") covers an area of approximately 1,064km in Lancashire, the United Kingdom. The Elswick Licence ("EXL 269") covers an area of 54.5km , which is fully surrounded by the Bowland Licence. Cuadrilla is the Operator of both licences.

These licences target what the British Geological Survey refers to as the “Bowland Shale” which spans right across the UK from Liverpool in the West to York in the East. This Bowland Shale presents what we see as attractive attributes for ultimate commercialisation as follows:

Over 1,000m thickness of shales and associated lithologies identified within the region;

  • Bowland shale can and has been fractured;

  • The shale strata are located several thousand feet below the level of aquifers; 

  • Close to pipeline infrastructure: UK’s extensive pipeline network has potential to facilitate cost efficient distribution of gas produced from the Bowland shale; and

  • Potential for export of excess gas.

Cuadrilla currently has eight sites within these licences, of which one is currently operational."

AJ Lucas 47% owners of Cuadrilla can be found at:

Emirates House, Lvl 22, 167 Eagle Street, Brisbane QLD 4000

& Lvl 6, 1 Elizabeth Plaza, Sidney NSW 2060 tel (07) 9490 4000

Once more to the bridge?



Benefitz Betty's picture

Neone Conomics

"There be more bicycles, but there are also more planes. It doesn’t matter how many good things we do: preventing climate breakdown means ceasing to do bad things. Given that economic growth, in nations that are already rich enough to meet the needs of all, requires an increase in pointless cconsumption it is hard to see how it can ever be decoupled from the assault on the living planet..."


"The government has spent two years and £40,000 of taxpayers’ money trying to hide how little the Northern Powerhouse minister visited the north of England in his role, in what one prominent northern figure called “a blatant disregard for the principles of democratic accountability”.

"A 505-page report released by Neoen this month ahead of an initial public offering suggested the battery cost around $90 million, at the current exchange rate... 

"It actually costs taxpayers' money. There's a cost of $4-5 million a year to have the battery in place... the battery was on track to "make revenues of about $25-26 million in its first year".

"We don't know what the profit margin of that is but we can probably estimate it's a fair profit margin," he said."


"Neoen remains in control of the remaining 30 per cent of the battery's output as well the majority of the battery's 129 megawatt-hour storage.

Neoen can use it to make money by charging the battery when power prices are low, then provide to the electricity market when wholesale prices are high."

"The worst denial is not the claim that this existential crisis isn’t happening. It is the failure to talk about it at all. Not talking about our greatest predicament, even as it starts to bite, requires a constant and determined effort. Taken as a whole (of course there are exceptions), the media are a threat to humanity. They claim to speak on our behalf, but they either speak against us or do not speak at all."


"Let’s be embarrassing. Let’s break the silence, however uncomfortable it makes us and others feel. Let’s talk about the great unmentionables: not just climate breakdown, but also growth and consumerism. Let’s create the political space in which well-intentioned parties can act. Let us talk a better world into being."

"It is of course disappointing that the minister charged with the Northern Powerhouse spent so little time in the area getting to understand what’s important to the people, communities and businesses of the north.

“But the attempts to thwart access to information about the work of the Northern Powerhouse minister show a blatant disregard for the principles of democratic accountability.

“The government need to use this as an opportunity to build a much more robust system of transparency and accountability, so that voters in the north can have confidence that the government are really serious and committed to supporting northern leaders to build a better future for the north.”


"Bats do not like draughts, and prefer well insulated boxes where temperature and humidity remain constant. They also need a rough textured wood to cling to. The wood should not be treated because bats are very sensitive to chemicals. A ‘bat ladder’ or other landing area that leads to an entry slit wide enough to admit bats, but narrow enough to keep out predators is also essential, usually 15 – 20 mm. Once up, a bat box cannot be opened legally without a licence. For more information on bats and the law call the Bat Helpline (0345 1300 228)...

Bats need time to find and explore new homes, and it may be several months or even years before boxes have residents – be patient!"

Benefitz Betty's picture

28 Hours A Day

"..Time and carbon budgets are running out. By mid-century, a shift to the lower goal would require a supercharged roll-back of emissions sources that have built up over the past 250 years.

The IPCC maps out four pathways to achieve 1.5C, with different combinations of land use and technological change. Reforestation is essential to all of them as are shifts to electric transport systems and greater adoption of carbon capture technology..."


"Over a three-week period, there were only 18 minutes when all 33 tribe members were asleep simultaneously. The scientists behind the work concluded that fitful sleep could be an ancient survival mechanism designed to guard against nocturnal threats.

The main difference appeared to be that tribe members were unburdened by paranoia and anxiety about sleep problems, which area common cause of concern in western countries."

"... the little black bat is thought to sleep for 19 hours each day"

'The only known function of sheep is to cure sheepiness'


The Walking Dead, moi?

I'll be baaaarch.


Benefitz Betty's picture

A Green Light