Truss told to increase earthquake limits to kickstart fracking revolution

Posted: September 14, 2022 by oldbrew in Energy, Politics, fracking, net zero
Tags: ,

UK test drilling site for shale gas

Surely the time has to come to break the energy policy stranglehold of climate-obsessed ‘net zero’ propagandists. Everyone knows limits on drilling have been set far below earthquake level. Replacing at least some imports with local gas must make sense, if feasible.
– – –
Liz Truss is being urged to relax the limits on earthquakes caused by fracking as part of plans to kickstart an energy revolution, says The Telegraph.

The Prime Minister is already poised to end the moratorium on fracking within days in a bid to make Britain energy independent by 2040.

But companies say this alone will not be enough to unlock Britain’s potentially vast shale gas reserves. The Telegraph understands fracking businesses are lobbying for the limits on seismic activity to be substantially increased to help kickstart the industry.

Current rules require drilling to stop if it causes tremors of 0.5 or more on the Richter scale.

Experts say tremors at this level occur naturally and often, at a magnitude so low it is imperceptible to people above ground. The current limit blocks any realistic possibility of exploiting shale resources commercially.

Fracking companies want parity with other industries, for example geothermal energy, which is allowed to create earthquakes of higher magnitudes than 0.5. In the US, fracking-related tremors of up to 4-magnitude are allowed.

According to the Royal Society, tremors of up to magnitude 2 are not generally felt by people above ground and fracking is not expected to cause tremors of more than magnitude 3.

A report by the society in 2012 said fracking would be less disruptive than coal mining had been historically.

It said magnitude 3 tremors were typically “felt by few people at rest or in the upper floors of buildings; similar to the passing of a truck”.

However, when Cuadrilla’s test operations in Lancashire caused a magnitude 2.9 tremor three years ago, residents nearby complained that their homes had been shaken, with some saying objects had fallen off of shelves.

Professor Richard Davies, a leading petroleum geologist at Newcastle University, said fracking had thus far “not been a major source of earthquakes” and that coal mining had caused “many times more”.

He said the question of whether the UK’s resources were commercially exploitable remains unproven but that restrictions on seismic activity prevented “a proper test”.

Continued here.

  1. […] Truss told to increase earthquake limits to kickstart fracking revolution | Tallbloke’s Talksh… […]

  2. oldbrew says:

    Switching to renewable energy could save trillions – study
    By Jonah Fisher
    BBC Environment Correspondent

    Published 18 hours ago

    The BBC keeps pushing renewables, but admits the central problem:

    Wind and solar are already the cheapest option for new power projects, but questions remain over how to best store power and balance the grid when the changes in the weather leads to fall in renewable output.

    Of course it’s more ‘how to’ than ‘how to best’ store power. Still waiting for credible answers after several decades. Academic talk of the ‘cheapest option’ isn’t comparing like with like, as everyone knows fossil fuels don’t need any electricity storage and can be activated on demand.

  3. Saighdear says:

    Fresh cup coffee: Just a reminder that the wind isn’t blowing very hard today AGAIN. and they STILL want to breed more Herons ( aka windNills ) for the fishless ponds … ah! I get it, no fish = no feeding or looking after required, Just stick a Heron at the side and it becomes a lvely ORNAMENTAL country. OH Bliss! our lovely Green Country ( play ELizabethan Serenade ) ….. note the form of lighting!

  4. Mike Wattam says:

    The whole ‘energy’ question needs rethinking from scratch. It is not just which ways to obtain power, it is about UK becoming self-sufficient at ALL times, and totally insulated from international price levels.

    It calls into question the why we allow the existence of foreign power companies which are continually taking huge profits and declaring ridiculous lies to gullible customers such as “we only supply sustainable energy”. Sack the lot of them.

    The UK government needs to take the lead on this, and NOW, proactively. No chance to shovel these issues off onto some future government via countless ‘Select Committees’. I call for action at all UK levels.

  5. Saighdear says:

    How much energy do we need ? …. just watching funereal procedures on tv. Gridwatch shows demand is much as such the same. and where’s all the electric vehicles? ruminating flower boosting machines and other instead. Plenty of the wrong kind of wind then, CH4 emissions in London ?

  6. Sprit of the wind says:

    How much gas have we got?
    All estimates, but this is why exploration is so important it could be a lot, however Truss’s decision to leave permission for wells up to local planning commitees is likely to simply be a way of government preventing any development without taking responsibility, I don’t trust any of the Globalist owned establishment on energy not one of them.
    Its up to the energy companies to sell the idea locally and the best way for them to do that is to clearly communicate the benefits like jobs, not minimum wage rubbish real jobs.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Truss said renewable and nuclear energy providers will use new contracting schemes to reflect their cost of production. Currently in the UK, the electricity generated from renewable and nuclear sources is tied to the price of natural gas. [bold added]

    That obviously doesn’t work any more, as the EU has already noted…

    LEAK: EU plans ‘revenue cap’ on power firms
    8 Sept 2022

    Producers of renewable and nuclear electricity are making “enormous revenues” from the crisis, explained Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission.

    “These revenues do not reflect their production costs. So, it is now time for the consumers to benefit,” she said at a press briefing on Wednesday (7 September).

    “We will propose to re-channel these unexpected profits to the Member States so that [they] can support the vulnerable households and vulnerable companies.”

    A windfall tax in effect.

  8. Philip Mulholland says:

    If the quarrying industry can get away with producing blasts with a seismic impact of 1.2 Magnitude….

    Kilkenny quake turns out to be a quarry blast

    Maybe the Irish have different regulations?

  9. Philip Mulholland says:

    @ Spirit of the wind.
    “How much gas have we got?”

    This planet contains more gas than you might think.

  10. oldbrew says:

    Fracking ban lifted, government announces
    – BBC News Climate and Science

    Published 8 hours ago

    Seismic rules TBA later.
    – – –
    Gas prices are high due to world shortages. Failing to produce available gas merely keeps the problem acute.

  11. Johna says:

    Mike Wattam says:
    The whole ‘energy’ question needs rethinking from scratch”.. Indeed it does and the best way to sort this politically caused ideological mess is to have a strategic energy utilities and defence policy with cross party agreement – NOW! Fracking might help but long term supply of gas at below market cost is essential to keep our growing wind tidal and PV roll out funded, backed-up (very significantly btw – N fission cant yoyo, N fusion isn’t working yet, tidal is almost inept) and create a viable economy to export manufactured goods made in Britain again. Given also that our NS O&G and land based processing and storage are easy targets for “immanent” non nuclear warfare and new O&G will take time and face the same issues we have now, coal must be used to gasify out the CH4 and H2 as well as all chemicals we get from oil – waste coke can also be used for steel and domestic use. So why doesn’t our so called British Sovern Government not want to implement this entirely sensible and pragmatic solution? Might it be their innate hatred of the working classes and keeping up their farce scare tactics of AWG caused by burning coal?

  12. Mike Wattam says:

    Can’t disagree with any of your comments. However, you have fallen into the common trap of assuming the politicians are thought leaders rather than donkeys, and that they have practical experience where they got their precious little hands dirty.

  13. Jophna says:

    Coming from a working class environment which started in 1690 and getting my hands dirty on leaving school it was destroyed in 1960’s i.e. the heart and sole knocked out of it (the real roots of what really does need levelling up). And having lived in our former colonies and other countries designing manufacturing and commissioning power stations railway motive power O&G systems heavy automotive inc. CNG CH2, I could not agree more that since the 1950’s our political leaders have systematically created a social divide that is now a massive chasm that can only be bridged by he public who if given the facts will sort this out. This site is testament to free speech and fair play particularly discussing CO2 caused AGW. But despite our grand efforts and amazing science our politicians have not listened and declared a climate emergency and are implementing their whole baked ideas on their energy systems that will make the chasm even wider and will lead to conflict and nuclear war.
    Here is a basic chart I did for said Politicians

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