The long-awaited Judicial Review of Surrey County Council’s decision-making over the planning permission for 20 years oil production at Horse Hill took place over two days this week.
Case could have wide-ranging implications for future carbon-intense proposals
A legal challenge to Surrey County Council’s decision to allow 20 years of oil drilling and production to take place near Gatwick airport begins in the High Court today.
The Weald Action Group, with local groups Frack Free Surrey and Back Off Horse Hill, is proud to launch a new video which shows why local communities are opposing plans to drill for oil at Horse Hill, and elsewhere in southern England.
The need for hydrogen to meet the UK’s zero-carbon target does not justify the expansion of the onshore oil and gas industry.
Some oil and gas companies are making the case that by providing gas which could be used to produce hydrogen they are part of the transition to zero-carbon. For example, Stephen Sanderson, CEO of UK Oil & Gas told Surrey County Council’s Planning Committee in June 2020: “We believe that well-regulated and safely produced indigenous gas, such as Loxley [Dunsfold], represents a vital opportunity to help meet net zero targets by providing the most cost effective solution for the future UK production of clean hydrogen fuel”.
Now the Weald Action Group has published a briefing which shows that there is no need for fossil fuels to produce this clean-burning fuel.
The environmental organisation Friends of the Earth and the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government have been granted permission to participate in a local campaigners’ legal challenge over oil production at Horse Hill, near Gatwick in Surrey.
Campaigner Sarah Finch is bringing a Judicial Review of Surrey County Council’s decision to grant an onshore oil company planning permission for four new oil wells and 20 years of oil production. Friends of the Earth had applied to make a legal intervention to support the challenge; the Secretary of State applied to be joined in order to oppose the challenge.
Campaigners are celebrating as a cohort of onshore oil firms have been forced to walk away from the controversial proposed oil drilling site at Leith Hill in Surrey.
The consortium of UK Oil & Gas Plc (UKOG), Angus Energy and Egdon Resources Ltd has decided to relinquish the licence after concluding that “the required long-reach/shallow target-depth wells are neither technically viable or economically feasible”.
UK Government energy policy and local planning rules on onshore oil developments need to change, say campaigners.
The Weald Action Group has published a briefing Why we don’t need more onshore oil in the UK, which refutes claims made by the onshore oil industry that their developments are needed to maintain energy security, that UK oil has a lower carbon footprint than imported oil, that they provide local jobs and that they are needed for plastic production.
The public consultation period for the Arreton site formally closed on July 24th but the portal has remained open for responses which have continued to be submitted.
We can confirm that, as of 3rd September there were 2225 opposition and 68 supporting comments.
The Don’t Drill The Wight campaign team decided to track and record the public comments for a variety of reasons. Essentially the Isle of Wight Planning Office Portal does not truly reflect accurate numbers and types of responses, for a variety of reasons, and we wanted to ensure we did.
Works by established artists go on sale today to raise funds for an important legal challenge supported by the Weald Action Group.
Contributing artists including Ackroyd and Harvey, Merlyn Chesterman RE and Surrey-based Kiri Jones and Ali Tomlin are taking part in the sale, organised by Ann Stewart, which is found at artatwag.artweb.com
Work on sale includes paintings, woodcuts, photographic prints, ceramics and glassware, at prices ranging from £25 to £1,000. Artists will donate 33% of the sale price – and in some cases 100% – to the cause.
Pat Smith, a 71-year-old grandmother from Dorking, is walking over 100 miles to raise funds for a legal challenge to Surrey County Council.