Chamber welcomes fracking appeal

Shale gas extraction

North and Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce chief executive Babs Murphy has welcomed Cuadrilla’s announcement that it will appeal the rejection of fracking applications in Lancashire.

Today, Cuadrilla announced it would be appealing Lancashire County Council’s decision to refuse permission for fracking at Roseacre Wood and Little Plumpton.

Babs Murphy said: “The delay has already cost our local business community approximately £3.5 million of immediate contracting opportunities.

“Contracts that were in the process of being awarded for site construction, access roads and security valued at £2million, together with work array installation valued at £1.5million, are now on hold.

“All of these services were within the capability of Lancashire businesses to deliver and five of six shortlisted civil engineering contractors are based in Lancashire.

“Developing a viable shale industry in Lancashire will have positive economic implications for the region in terms of investment, jobs and supply chain engagement and has the potential to provide security of energy supply to regional manufacturers.

“Using energy produced here at home would mean we are much less exposed to the risks of being over-reliant on imported gas and fracking is an established technique that could help us achieve this.

“With Lancashire County Council needing to make considerable savings over the coming years, we urge them to work with Cuadrilla to achieve the lowest costs possible for this appeal.

“It is up to all of us to work together to keep as much of these economic opportunities here in Lancashire.  Cuadrilla has pledged to seek to buy local.  It’s up to us now to raise our game, work together, and take full advantage of this.”

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