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SPEND FROM SHALE CONTINUES TO BOOST THE LANCASHIRE ECONOMY

Shale gas exploration company Cuadrilla has now pumped £16million directly into the Lancashire economy as it works to establish a new industry in the North West.

Cuadrilla, which is based in Bamber Bridge but operates its flagship fracking site from Preston New Road, near Blackpool, revealed its latest spend as part of a longstanding corporate commitment to ‘Putting Lancashire First’.

The leading shale exploration operator in the UK also revealed it had employed more people both directly and as contractors between April and June than earlier this year – and that was before hydraulic fracturing of the operator’s second horizontal well got under way.

Jill Overland, Finance and Business Services Director at Cuadrilla, explained: “The tracker is independently audited and verified and, for quarter two, shows our spend with local business continues to climb. This is the period before operations resumed on site and so we would expect that to increase again for quarter three. That is in line with our published commitments to ‘Putting Lancashire First’ and local businesses can be assured that if they can provide products or services to our specifications then we will do business.

“We are really proud to be part of Lancashire. Our vision to establish a new industry, creating jobs and opportunity is widely understood. What may not be as clear is how natural gas from shale can be at the forefront of the UK journey to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The UK’s Committee on Climate Change is clear – natural gas will be needed both as a feedstock for hydrogen for heating and transport and as a back-up to support wind & solar power. Cuadrilla and Lancashire as a whole have a real opportunity here to be part of supplying that gas.”

The Putting Lancashire First tracker for quarter two, 2019, covers the period from April until June and shows:

  • Total number of employees is UP
  • Total number of contracts is UP
  • Number of apprentices is UP
  • Direct and indirect spend with local businesses is UP (£16million)
  • The number of businesses registered on Cuadrilla’s supply portal is UP
  • Local community benefits are UP

Earlier this month Cuadrilla resumed operations at Preston New Road, with all the required permits and permissions in place to hydraulically fracture up to 45 stages on its second horizontal well known as PNR2.

It also announced plans to seek a minor variation under Section 73 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to one of the conditions of its planning permission to extend drilling and fracturing operations which should end in November for up to 18 months. It doesn’t include any change to either the existing approved work scope for up to four horizontal wells or the requirement for the site to be decommissioned and restored by April 2023.

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