Dudleston methane drilling decision postponed

Dart Energy project near Airth Image copyright MJ Richardson
Image caption Dart Energy operates a number of coal bed methane sites across the UK, including Airth in Scotland

A decision over plans to drill for methane in north Shropshire has been postponed by the local authority.

Dart Energy has applied for permission to dig a test borehole to check for coal bed methane on farmland in Dudleston, near Ellesmere.

About 100 people protested outside a Shropshire Council planning meeting on Friday afternoon.

Councillors said they opposed the bid, but following legal advice, agreed to postpone a decision until November.

They unanimously said they "were minded to reject the application" but officers and a legal advisor stepped in.

Further research

Officers are now expected to carry out further research before the next planning meeting.

Coal bed methane involves drilling down to a coal seam and then removing water to stimulate the flow of methane, which can then be used to produce energy.

Dart Energy was first granted planning permission to create a test borehole at the site in 2010, but it expired last year.

Their current plans include drilling a 830m deep (2,720ft) borehole at the site. If approved, it would remain for two months, after which it would be sealed.

Related Topics

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites