Ebberston Moor 3

Third Energy, the company that was given planning permission to frack at Kirby Misperton earlier this year, has applied for planning permission to maintain their existing gas well at the Ebberston  Moor 3 site in the North York Moors National Park for another three years. Please use the, “add comments,” link at this page to make clear your opposition to this proposal. The deadline for comments is 15 September.

Although the application only includes maintenance of the existing gas well, it is clear Third Energy have a wider programme of development in mind for this well and their other gas wells in the North York Moors National Park. They may be playing for time in the expectation of changes to regulations regarding either fracking in National Parks, or the use of injection wells. We expect to see further planning applications for this site, or for other nearby sites in the near future. Frack Free York will closely examine any further planning applications and keep you updated.

Your objection will be more effective if you use you write it in your own words. However you may wish to consider the following issues when writing your objection.

  • The site is located in the North York Moors National Park to the north of the village of Sawdon and to the south west of the village of Hackness. It is adjacent to the Wykeham Forest Trail, the Tabular Hills Walk and the Moor to Sea Cycle Route. If you have a connection to this area, or if you simply enjoy visiting it, you should mention the effect the application will have on you.
  • The Ebberston Moor B1 gas well was drilled at the site in 2013 under the condition that the well is decommissioned and the site restored three years after the planning permission was granted. That deadline expired on 28 August 2016. Restoration of the site is now overdue and Third Energy should now restore the site as soon as possible instead of keeping the gas well open for another three years.
  • This application only includes maintenance of the well for three years and regular site visits, without gas production, or additional drilling. However it is merely the thin end of the wedge, with the supporting documentation making clear that further development of the site could be applied for in the future, including future gas production with unspecified new methods, drilling and testing another gas well at the same site, or using the gas well as an injection well to dispose of wastewater from other gas wells in the area.
  • The site is in Ground Water Protection Zone 2, meaning that there are important sources of groundwater in the area that need to be protected. Local groundwater is used as a drinking water supply. The possible future developments listed above, especially the use of injection wells, are not suitable for this site, as they put groundwater at risk of contamination. North York Moors National Park should act to preclude them by ordering the immediate restoration of the site.
  • The UK has a duty, under international treaties and the Climate Change Act, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions . The IPCC has identified that the world’s existing reserves of fossil fuels are more than enough to cause dangerous climate change. Using new methods of gas production, or using waste water injection to produce previously inaccessible gas deposits can only make climate change worse.
  • Third Energy say they will only have one vehicle travel to site per day, but Wykeham Parish Council have complained that traffic during the drilling stage in 2013 traffic was much greater than expected, and that this caused damage to the road and to a church wall, several incidents with cyclists and horse riders and the death of a dog. Given that Third Energy have in mind unspecified further developments at the site, their promise of only one vehicle per day may be unreliable.

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