UK shale plans ‘could have major transport impact’

A environmental assessment published on Tuesday will underpin a major onshore oil and gas licensing round next year covering 41% of UK territory

Transport for future shale gas projects in the UK could have “significant” environmental impacts that would be difficult to mitigate, according to a strategic environmental assessment published by the government on Tuesday.

Vehicle movements could total 51 per day during the exploration and site preparation phases of projects, which could last almost three years. That is much higher than previous assessments had suggested.

Projects would also create major demand for water resources, with up to 25,000 cubic metres needed to frack each well. The assessment assumes water companies and environment agencies would ensure demand does not lead to over-abstraction.

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