Consultation has re-opened on the application for exploratory oil drilling on the Isle of Wight.
Final plans have been submitted for the building, operation and decommissioning of a well site for the exploration and appraisal of hydrocarbon minerals at a site in Arreton, just off the main Newport to Sandown road.
Information relating to access and rights of way mitigation measures has been updated, along with a new site layout, sections and restoration and clarification of ecology and environmental health issues.
Advice sought from Island Roads before the submission of final highways measures, saw the highways company say the ‘proposed amendments were acceptable’, resolving matters of an inadequate turning area, vehicles on the highway and insufficient parking.
Recommended approval from Island Roads
With the few concerns ironed out and the highways access — a track road leading off from the A3056, next to the public footpath on St George’s Down — remodelled by UK Oil and Gas the applicants, Island Roads has now recommended the application be approved with eight conditions proposed by them, including a wheelwash for vehicles connected to the construction of the site and gates set back from the main road.
UKOG says the scheme is an opportunity to see whether it would be viable to drill at the site, near New Barn Business Park, for oil in the future.
It is not asking for permission for production of oil, only exploration as part of trial stages.
The revised documents now mean comments are again being accepted in regards to the application (20/00513/FUL) until 12th February.
DDTW: ‘Inaccuracies and discrepancies’
The campaign group, Don’t Drill The Wight (DDTW), however, has said it has real concerns the public will be confused, due to the ‘inaccuracies and discrepancies’ of the council’s planning portal, particularly with responses to the consultation.
Keeping track of every response submitted, DDTW say, as of 16th January, there has been 2,243 objections and 69 supportive comments left for the council to consider for the application.
May: Still possible to add further objections
Having raised the issue with the planning authority and sent in a report with their findings, Sylvia May, a DDTW member said,
“The planning portal simply does not publish the correct number of differing types of submissions of any kind at the application link.
“We want to ensure all Islanders understand it is still possible to add further objections and additional comments particularly related to the new documentation.”
For more information about Don’t Drill The Wight, including more information on the planning application, you can visit their Website.
This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some alterations and additions may have been made by OnTheWight. Ed