How to object to Marsh Lane exploratory drilling

ETA – there is still no date set for the consideration of this application, so there is still time to email/post your objections in. Let’s keep up the pressure.

This is the FIRST application submitted by INEOS in North East Derbyshire. INEOS are looking to explore for shale gas in over a large area of North East Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire.

PEDL

INEOS’s Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence (PEDL) areas.

You can view the application documents on the Derbyshire County Council website (link here)

Planning application reference:  CM4/0517/10: Submitted by INEOS UPSTREAM LTD, for planning permission to drill a vertical hydrocarbon exploratory core well, land adjacent to Bramleymoor Lane, near Marsh Lane, Eckington.

The planning application consists of 5 separate phases (timings provided by INEOS):

Phase 1 – Site Development and Establishment – approximately 3 months.

Phase 2 –   Drilling and Coring – approximately 3 months.

Phase 3 –   Establishment as a Listening Well and Suspension – approximately 1 week with the suspended well in place until restoration.

Phase 4 –   Undertaking Listening Well Operations – up to 3 weeks as required.

Phase 5 –   Abandonment and Restoration – approximately 1 month.

However, INEOS are quite open about the fact that if analysis of results show that there is viable gas accessible via the site, they will be applying for permission to drill horizontally to frack, leading to more wells if this proves financially recoverable.

wsells

Image showing  the hypothetical INEOS gas field covering NE Derbyshire – each blue dot is a well pad, each containing approx 12 wells each, 30 pads, 396 wells per 38 square mile. Credit – “Andy”

If you haven’t objected yet, now’s your chance. All objections from any person or Group are considered. Objections from those living near to the development have most weighting.

How to object

To object you can do 1 of the following:

Your letter or email must include:

  • The Application Reference Number: CM4/0517/10.
  • Your name, address and postcode (Objections without a postcode will not be considered)

Send in your objections as soon as possible. The closing date is 10 August 2017

Beginning

We suggest you begin by saying that you are writing to object to the application, and add a couple of sentences about yourself, e.g. where you live, what you do for a living, what your interest is in the application, why you are concerned, your connection to Bramleymoor Lane, Marsh Lane, etc.

If you live near the well-site, please state what it is about the application that you are concerned about, e.g. the impact on your village, traffic, the impact on local roads/landscape, effect and the local economy, etc. You could also say something about how worried you are about how this work will impact on your daily life.

If you live in another part of the UK (or in another country) you can mention any connection you have with Marsh Lane or the East Midlands – for example, you might visit the area regularly on holiday, or because you have family or friends in the area, and whether or not it would make you more or less likely to visit the area on holiday if the proposals are approved and developed.

Local Knowledge

Local knowledge and experience are very important when campaigning against a planning application. So if you have any experiences to relate regarding living near a well-site (such as noxious smells, previous disruption, a negative effect on your health, work going on outside permitted hours, or anything else that has had any impact on your daily life, no matter how large or small), please include this in your objection. This sort of information is vital to help the Planning Officer make their recommendation.

INEOS

Also, if you have had any other direct experience or problems when dealing with INEOS – for example, you have been to any of their consultations or talks, or have had any direct contact with the company and its employees, then please include this in your objection.

Equally important are any instances that have occurred where you have not been kept informed about the development of the site. Please include any documentation – e.g. emails, leaflets, photographs, etc. – that can back up your comments, as this sort of information is helpful for the Planning Officer to decide whether or not the company can be trusted to undertake the work that it has applied for.

Key points

Please put the below into your own words – perhaps by rephrasing the points in your own way or using the information in the bullet points to form a paragraph. You can also change the order of the points if you prefer, or choose the ones that you feel most concerned about. You don’t have to include all the points, and please make additional points you feel would support your objection, as described below:

lorry

(lorries on Dyche Lane – photo credit “Andy”)

Traffic and impact on Highway issues

  • There will be a significant rise in the volume of traffic – up to100 lorry movements a day during site construction and up to 50 during drilling
  • This traffic will travel along country roads – the unsuitably narrow Snowden Lane and Eckington Road, the B6056 and Dyche Lane.
  • This will result in increased noise pollution, air pollution from traffic fumes, and damage to verges and pavements.
  • There will be a greater risk of traffic accidents – children, pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders.
  • The identified site of the site access gateway is on a single-carriageway road which has a 60mph speed limit, and the difficulties this is likely to cause for locals, whether on foot, on horse, in vehicles.
  • The route via Dyche Lane/Eckington Road junction involves manoeuvring around a min-roundabout, which will be un-navigable by HGV’s without serious traffic disruption, parking restrictions and great inconvenience to local residents.

map3

Close up of site from INEOS’s planning application. Note the road access and the two farms close to the site.

Pollution – noise, light and air

  • The application mentions the work schedule, and it can be stated with conviction that vibration and noise from the greatly increased traffic and 24 hours a day drilling over several months is likely to affect a large area, resulting in sleep disturbance and increased stress and poor mental health for local residents.
  • There will be further noise from compressors, pumps and the large number of heavy vehicle movements.
  • In addition to the noise and air pollution, you can emphasise how there will be serious light pollution from night working and security, adversely affecting local residents and wildlife. There will also be air pollution from ozone, hydrocarbons, dust and venting/flaring of methane.

Location

map1

Map of site and location in relation to Upper Handley and Marsh Lane.
  • Amazingly, the proposed site is quite close to a school (and all the issues that will incur) and less than 300 metres away from housing. The proposal is in a green belt and really doesn’t fit with the tenets of sustainable development.
  • The proposed Bramleymoor Lane site is surrounded by known old mine workings, and likely near unmarked, unmapped older ones. Clearly, drilling poses a threat of collapsing mines and release of gaseous build-up, including radon.

Of course, we are limited to objecting to the application with regard to exploratory drilling, not fracking, but I don’t think there is any issue with mentioning that you are concerned that exploratory drilling for shale gas will open the way for large scale exploitation of the NE Derbyshire countryside by INEOS, and beyond into South Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.

Fracking of these areas introduces the potential for water and air pollution and harm to wildlife and natural habitats. It will also make it harder to reduce our carbon emissions and meet climate change targets.

The more personalised your objection is, the more powerful it will be.

Any other views you have about the proposed development are valid and are called Material Considerations.

Examples of types of issues appear below, but are not exhaustive.

Air quality and dust: Dust from construction activities; Particulate from HGVs; Particulates from generators; CO2 emissions (climate change); Air quality and perceived health effects on children, chronic sick

Increased traffic: ­­­Road safety; suitability of roads for HGVs; Vehicle access; Car parking for site workers; Airports; Impact on cyclists, horse riders, walkers etc

Visual impact on the local and wider setting: Visitors to the site; walkers; people tending to their animals; horse riders; cyclists; Plant & Machinery; Litter; Hard standing; Height of structures; Scale of development & proximity to residents & animals

Lighting: Night time lighting; Effect on animals, birds etc.

Noise: Night time operations; 24/7 drilling; Effects on children, elderly people, sick people; Soil stripping operations; Distance from homes, schools, animals; Traffic noise (night); Plant Machinery.

Nature conservation: Protected species & habitats; Light; Dust; Noise; is the planning sustainable (If not should it be built on green belt land)

Health & Wellbeing: Anything that you think has or will impact upon your Mental Health or Physical Health; Any concerns that you may have regarding Health.

Land contamination

Soils and impact on agricultural land and green belt; loss of both.

Geology: Old mines; Faults.

Site restoration and aftercare: Responsibility for restoration; Responsibility for any latent / long term adverse effects.

Ultimately, you should ask Derbyshire County Council to reject this application, and tell them if you wish to be informed of the outcome.

Finally, please share this page on Facebook and Twitter

IT ALL STARTS WITH JUST ONE WELL …

(And if you don’t know what all the fuss about fracking is, spend 5 minutes watching this TED Ed video, just to give you a calm, concise view):

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