WAG Waddock Cross objectionThe Weald Action Group has formally objected to the application by Egdon Resources to keep the Waddock Cross oil site open for a further ten years. (application P/VOC/2023/02762).
The application is for a ten-year extension to an existing dormant site. If successful, Egdon Resources plans to submit a further application for two more wells with the intention of resuming commercial oil production. If the oil yield shown in modelling cited in the Planning Statement is achieved, Waddock Cross could become one of the largest onshore oil production sites in the UK.
The Weald Action Group has objected on several grounds:
- Oil production would result in significant greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental impacts. The burning of fossil fuels is a key cause of the climate crisis we face. The UN Secretary General António Guterres and others have repeatedly warned us of the urgent need to stop production of all fossil fuels.
- The Planning Statement states that there is a “national need to maximise indigenous supplies of UK oil and gas” (page 26). This is misleading. It is a well-known fact that around of 80% of UK produced oil is exported. And there is no specific mention of the strategic importance of or need for further onshore oil exploration and production in current UK Government national energy policy.
- Egdon Resources have already breached local planning policy by failing to restore the site when its planning permission ended. The site has effectively been mothballed since 2014. The Council failed to enforce the requirement that the site be restored.
Vicki Elcoate of the Weald Action Group said, “Given that Egdon Resources’ permission to develop the site expired in June this year, combined with the potential significant environmental impacts that this application paves the way for, it is wholly inappropriate that a decision on this application be made by unelected planning officers. It must be heard by the Strategic Planning Committee.”