Fracking Planning Guidance Review 2018
On July 5th The Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee issued their inquiry report regarding planning guidance for fracking.
The committee admonished the government for publishing the Written Ministerial Statement from BEIS prior to the completion of their investigation and their written findings, stating in their introduction.....
"We were disappointed that the Government decided to publish a WMS on fracking planning policy during the course of our inquiry. The 2018 WMS contained measures and areas of interest that had been raised during our oral evidence sessions and in written submissions to the inquiry. Publishing it the sitting day before our final evidence session with the Government meant that we were unable to explore its contents more widely with our witnesses.
The Minister for Housing attempted to justify the untimely decision to publish the WMS by saying that “this was a manifesto commitment that we were looking to give effect to… we are approaching an important moment at the exploration stage; later this year we may see the first shale gas extraction since 2011. There is a real operational need to get on with this”
While we acknowledge the Government’s reasons, we see no reason why the Government could not have delayed the 2018 WMS by a matter of weeks to take into account our findings or, indeed, before our inquiry began so all witnesses would have been able to comment on it."