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Fossil Fuels: Licensing

Question for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

UIN 141106, tabled on 16 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy (a) not to permit licencing of onshore gas or oil development where the Planning Authority Council and/or landowner is against it and (b) offer a royalty to the landowner and Council where they are in favour of developing onshore production.

Answered on

24 March 2022

Licensing of locations for onshore oil and gas exploration and production is a separate process from planning, typically encompassing large areas and occurring some years in advance of any actual developments that would require planning or landowner consent. It would not be practicable to base licensing decisions on future planning or landowner decisions.

In addition to requiring the relevant planning consents and landowner agreements, onshore oil and gas operations are subject to regulatory oversight including environmental permitting processes and scrutiny by the Health and Safety Executive.

The Government does not offer a royalty to landowners or local authorities in relation to onshore oil and gas exploration and production. Any agreements between developers and other parties would be a matter for the relevant parties.