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  • Energy company responds to fracking fears of residents

    Henry James

    ONGOING concerns about the possibility of fracking in parts of West Lancashire has prompted residents to call a public meeting to discuss the subject.

    This will be held at Crawford Village Hall on Thursday, June 29 starting 7.30pm.

    It has been prompted by claims that energy company Aurora plans to carry out seismic testing in the Crawford, Skelmersdale and Bickerstaffe areas of the borough with a view to future fracking operations for shale gas.

    However, the company, which was granted a Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence (PEDL) in 2016 for the Ormskirk, Skelmersdale, and Bickersatffe areas, say they have not finalised plans for the location or timing of any surveys.

    In a letter to the Champion, Crawford resident, Dawn Krueger, wrote: “I think it's only fair that the public should know that a company named Aurora has a licence to explore for shale gas in the area of Crawford village, Skelmersdale and Bickerstaffe through a process known as fracking.

    “The company has confirmed that it will first test these areas for their viability by a process called seismic testing. If successful, then the next stage will be a fracking rig.

    “Aurora has confirmed that three old conventional oil wells in these three named areas provide good geographical data. In other words, we are at risk of this happening.”

    Ian Roche, managing director of Aurora Energy Resources Limited, said: “The initial phase of exploration in PEDL 262 will comprise the acquisition of a new 3D geophysical survey, aimed at providing a state-of-the-art image of the subsurface. The acquisition of such surveys is a fairly routine activity in the UK, with more than 75,000km of 2D and more than 3,000 km2 of 3D geophysical surveys having been acquired here since the 1960s.

    “We have not yet finalised plans as to the likely location or timing of this work in PEDL 262. Aurora will, of course, contact local elected representatives and parish councils once these plans are more developed.”


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