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Cuadrilla to submit new planning application for exploratory well in Sussex

06 September 2013

Cuadrilla has withdrawn its application to extend the time in which it can drill for oil in Balcombe, Southern England, and submitted a fresh planning application after saying the current one may not comply with regulations. The new permit application will no longer cover potential fracking at the site, which Cuadrilla may hope will allay fears of the local community.

The exploratory well site in Balcombe - Photo: Cuadrilla
The exploratory well site in Balcombe - Photo: Cuadrilla

A Cuadrilla spokesman said the company has decided to make a new application for the well testing activity to “resolve any potential legal ambiguity around how the planning boundary should be drawn for a subsurface horizontal well”.

"As this is a new planning application, the County Council will consult with interested third parties and we will have the opportunity for further engagement with Balcombe residents about our well testing plans."

The company, which has drawn fierce protests at its drilling site in Balcombe, had been attempting to gain a six-month extension to its current drilling permit, which expires at the end of September. At a minimum it is likely to add several months of delays to further work at the site.

Cuadrilla has so far drilled a 3,000ft vertical well at the site and has now begun drilling a well horizontally for 2,000ft.

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