Bye-Bye INEOS!

On the 16th August 2018, following a Public Inquiry, the Planning Inspector granted permission to INEOS for exploratory drilling for shale gas at Bramleymoor Lane, Marsh Lane. In granting that permission the Planning Inspector imposed a number of conditions, the first of which was that the works for which permission had been granted “shall be begun before the expiration of three years from the date of this permission”.

That time constraint expired on Monday 16 August.

There were numerous other preconditions imposed by the Planning Inspector which INEOS were required to meet; and they were also required to file documentary proof to the County Council that those conditions had been met, to the satisfaction and approval of the Council, before any on-site work could commence.

CADAF have been in contact with Planning Services at Derbyshire County Council and in an email timed at 17:13 on Friday 13 August, a senior official in the Planning Services department confirmed that “we have had no contact from INEOS regarding the permission at Bramleymoor Lane”. Furthermore the Derbyshire Times reported: “A spokesperson for Derbyshire County Council said: ‘Planning permission for a shale gas site at Bramleymoor Lane, Marsh Lane was granted three years ago, and has now expired. If the developer [INEOS] wishes to proceed then they will now need to submit a full new planning application. Our planning team have had no formal contact from INEOS regarding this site since the appeal decision was issued’. A spokesman from INEOS added: ‘There is a moratorium in the UK and no activity will be progressed as long as this remains in place'”.

So we feel confident that now it’s time for us to say: “Time’s up, INEOS!”

Could INEOS do anything about this? Our contacts at Planning Services have confirmed more than once that INEOS do not have any recourse whatsoever to extend that three-year time limit.

We should remain aware that INEOS continue to hold the fracking licence in this PEDL area (PEDL 300) until 2024, but in the absence of any landowner consents for large-scale fracking operations, and in light of the Moratorium and the fact that the issues of climate change and fossil fuel extraction are now such a political “hot potato”, it would seem unlikely that INEOS would be in a position to take advantage of that in the foreseeable future.

It’s been a long, hard slog and so many of us have given up so much of our time and energy and made so many sacrifices but we always felt, we always knew we had right on our side.

And friends, we did it!! We’ve finally won! The gainsayers said we would never beat INEOS, but we did it!! We can now all celebrate our victory and congratulate each other on a fantastic achievement! Well done everyone!

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