Judge dismisses fracking challenge

The High Court has backed Yorkshire County Council’s decision to grant permission for test drilling at a site in Ryedale. 

In 2015, oil and gas company Third Energy applied for permission to test drill an existing well at Kirby Misperton in North Yorkshire. The council’s planning committee approved the application in May, in line with the advice of its planning officers.    

The decision was challenged by Friends of the Earth (FoE) and local campaigners from anti-fracking group Frack Free Ryedale. They claimed that the council’s assessment of cumulative effects in the environmental statement was flawed as it had failed to take account of the impact on climate change of burning the recovered gas at a nearby production site in Knapton. 

FoE also alleged that climate change had barely been mentioned by the planning committee, and that the councillors did not have information about the total carbon emissions produced from the proposed fracking.

In response, the council argued that it ...

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