The company which wants to frack for gas on the Fylde has announced it is to drill two new sites.
Cuadrill a Resources is to apply for permission to drill at a site at Roseacre Wood, near Wharles and at a site near the A583 at Little Plumpton.
The company wants to explore each site to see if natural gas trapped in the shale rock layers 6,000ft below the surface can be got out economically.
Cuadrilla has promised full consultation with the people living in both areas and has organised meetings with the community at two locations tonight, together with further consultations throughout the process.
It said with environmental impact assessments to be carried out on each site, plus up to nine permits to be cleared with the environment agency, and planning permission to be granted by Lancashire County Council, the process is likely to take many months.
Francis Egan, chief executive of Cuadrilla said that if all the permissions were granted it would be late 2014 before any drilling took place at either site and 2015 before any actual fracking -– the process of extracting gas by pumping water under high pressure into the shale rock – took place.
He also said the company would end its activities on three sites which it had previously drilled on the Fylde – Anna’s Road, Preese Hall and Grange Hill.
He said Anna’s road would be fully restored while Grange Hill would be used as a seismic monitoring station, with a device placed int he drill shaft to check for any tremors which may be caused by fracking in other areas of the Fylde.
He said: “These two new sites have been chosen carefully because of the geology and after considering the results of the 3D survey of the area.
“The sites will be one and a half hectares each, we will drill up to four wells on each site. An environmental impact assessment will be carreid out by Arup in each area and the residents will have ample opportunity to ask questions.
“The community benefit will be £100,000 for each well that is fracked, which could be up to £400,000 for each site.”
Residents in the immediate vicinity of the two sites today are being invited to drop-in sessions to find out more about the drill sites.
Members of the wider community are invited to find out more about the proposals at the following events:
Roseacre Wood Information Day: at Elswick Village Hall on February 12, from 3pm to 8pm.
Preston New Road Information Day: at Pipers Height Caravan Park on February 13 from 3pm to 8pm.