The owner of shale fracking firm Cuadrilla will permanently plug and abandon its two shale wells in Lancashire, drawing a line on Britain’s failed fracking industry.
Cuadrilla has set out plans to permanently seal their shale gas operation drilled at the controversial Preston New Road shale exploration site, this coming a little over two years after the Government put a stop to fracking in England. The Government brought in the ban on fracking in late 2019, following years of bitter opposition from climate campaigners and local protest groups, as a response to the study by the industry regulator which warned that fracking could not be carried out safely without the risk of triggering earth tremors.
Francis Egan, the Chief Executive of Cuadrilla, said the government’s oil and gas regulator had ordered the ‘ridiculous’ shutdown of the wells despite Europe’s gas supply crisis. He argued that fracking could help to secure gas supplies, saying, ‘At a time when the UK is spending billions of pounds annually importing gas from all corners of the globe, and gas prices for hard-pressed UK households are rocketing, the UK government has chosen this moment to ask us to plug and abandon the only two viable shale gas wells in Britain.’
Consequently, a rig will be set up to begin the of filling the wells with cement and the associated surface pipework and valves will be removed from the Preston New Road site.