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Fracking firm Cuadrilla must obtain a mining waste permit and a radioactive substances permit before it can carry out test drilling at Balcome in Sussex, the Environment Agency said today (Monday 17 June 2013). The move follows a legal letter from Friends of the Earth and concerns expressed by local residents.

Local residents, who will be consulted about the licence applications, now have further opportunities to raise concerns about Cuadrilla’s plans in Balcombe.

Friends of the Earth Energy Campaigner Tony Bosworth said:

“We’re delighted the Environment Agency has listened to our concerns and tightened up its regulations on Cuadrilla’s test drilling in Sussex.

“But despite the threat it poses to local communities, our environment and the climate, the risk of fracking still hangs over local people across the UK.

“Shale gas and oil will do little to tackle soaring fuel bills – Ministers must get the economy off its fossil fuel addiction and build a clean energy future we can all afford.”


Notes to editors:

1. Consultation begins on Cuadrilla mining waste permit at Balcombe.

2. Friends of the Earth's legal team wrote to the Environment Agency arguing that Cuadrilla needed to obtain permits under the Environmental Permitting Regulations 2010 before carrying out exploratory drilling at the site. We believe they require a mining waste permit, a radioactive substances permit and a groundwater permit.

3. Friends of the Earth background briefing on fracking.

4.  Friends of the Earth's Clean British Energy campaign is urging the Government to listen to the public and transform our broken energy system by developing clean and affordable power from our wind, sun and water. For too long the Big Six energy companies have locked Britain into importing costly gas and coal - causing our fuel bills to rocket. Backing renewable power and cutting energy waste will stabilise fuel bills and create new jobs. To back the campaign visit here.

If you're a journalist looking for press information please contact the Friends of the Earth media team on 020 7566 1649.


Published by Friends of the Earth Trust