Dear BOW Supporter,
We have not been in touch in a while, but things are picking up again.
Angus Energy has recently made two important announcements relating to the Brockham Oilfield. On 25 Oct it announced that it will “submit a normalisation application for the continued surface activities of the production plant required for well BR-X4 and notably, its inclusive sidetrack BR-X4Z.” It remains to be seen whether this will include a retrospective application for the drilling of sidetrack BR-X4Z, and/or an application cover any further exploration, testing or production from that or other wells, as Surrey County Council have requested.
In the meantime, on 23 Oct Angus announced that it has received final approval from the Oil and Gas Authority to begin production from the Kimmeridge shale and limestone layers from well BR-X4Z. This is despite the national planning policy guidance suggesting that such consent should only be issued once planning application is in place.
Angus is planning to start production from the Kimmeridge layers in the first quarter of 2018, i.e. by the end of March. This will require the erection of a tall rig on the site, even if further drilling is not required, so that they can do further work on the well. If it goes according to plan, Brockham will be the first site in the country, where this unconventional reservoir will be put into production. They have also announced that they plan to generate electricity at the wellsite using a compression ignition (i.e. diesel) generator supplied with gas and volatiles drawn from the producing well. Surrey County Council have informed us that this may need a further planning permission, but to date, no such application has been submitted.
Brockham Oil Watch is in regular communication with the Council, the Environment Agency and Health and Safety Executive regarding the planned operations at Brockham. The Environment Agency is in the process of evaluating Angus’ application for a variation of their existing environmental permit to produce oil and gas. We also understand that the EA will be issuing guidance on how the Agency classifies acidisation processes, and how it monitors oilfield wellsites to ensure that only the operations that are allowed within the scope of a valid permit are actually performed.
Please see more in the “news” and “blog” sections of our website.