The only licences to frack for gas in Scotland are going to be dropped, according to the company that holds them.
That would mean that, in contrast to England, no hydraulic fracturing to extract underground shale gas would be allowed in Scotland. Huge shale reserves were announced across northern England last week, with strong backing from the Westminster government.
But abandoning fracking in Scotland could help pave the way politically for Dart’s controversial plans to exploit coalbed methane using other techniques at Airth, near Falkirk, and at Canonbie, where the company is working with the Duke of Buccleuch’s estate.
Dart said that it had shown that commercially viable levels of coalbed methane could be extracted in Scotland without recourse to fracking technology. The company has been assessing the fracking licences it acquired from another company at Canonbie in 2012.
“We are working with Sepa to alter our permits such that we do not need nor have licences to use fracking for coalbed methane,” a Dart spokesman told the Sunday Herald.