Cuadrilla eyes new frack locations

Messenger Newspapers: Prime Minister David Cameron pictured during a visit to a shale drilling oil depot. Prime Minister David Cameron pictured during a visit to a shale drilling oil depot.

A fracking company has announced plans to explore for shale gas in two new locations.

Cuadrilla Resources said it wanted to explore the full potential of Lancashire's shale gas resources at the two sites in Fylde.

The company said it would apply for planning permission to drill, hydraulically fracture and test the flow of gas from up to four wells on each of the sites.

Separate applications will also be made to install two seismic arrays that would be used to monitor the hydraulic fracturing process.

Cuadrilla pledged an "extensive" programme of public consultation, adding that each of the two exploration sites will have £100,000 made available for the benefit of the local community - up to £400,000 per site if four wells are hydraulically fractured.

Francis Egan, Cuadrilla's chief executive, said: "We've been working hard to assess our site options and have undertaken extensive technical and geological analysis. As a result of this work, we have decided to focus on just two sites at this time.

"This will allow us to reduce the potential impact on the local area during exploration while still gathering the important information we need to determine how much gas could be recovered. We're committed to being a good neighbour and to talking with the community at every stage of the process."

Cuadrilla said it had decided not to apply for permission to carry out hydraulic fracturing at another site in the area - Grange Hill - adding the existing well will be used as the base for a seismic monitor to complement the seismic arrays that would be installed around the proposed new sites.

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