Protecting the environment

The Bigger Picture

The use of natural gas extracted from shale rock has significant potential to further reduce the UK’s overall CO2 emissions.

By replacing liquefied natural gas imports, and continuing to decrease reliance on coal, with shale gas produced onshore we can help to reduce the UK’s carbon footprint and provide a cost-effective source of energy for our homes, businesses and industry.

Recent reductions in the UK’s carbon emissions have been largely due to the displacement of coal-based power generation in favour of natural gas. In 2016, there was a switch in the main sources of electricity generation away from coal to gas generation.

According to a Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy report, the energy generation from coal fell by 60 per cent, as a number of plants closed or switched to burning biomass; gas rose by 46 per cent. Renewables’ share of generation was stable at 25 per cent in 2016, the same as in 2015. Increased renewables generation capacity was balanced by less favourable weather conditions for solar and wind generation.

Our Shale Gas Site

At Cuadrilla we are committed to ensuring that shale gas exploration is done safely and with minimal impact to the environment.

We are proud to be the first UK shale gas operator to launch an online ePortal to allow the public to view the status of the environmental monitoring at our site at Preston New Road.

The design of the portal has taken into account environmental priorities set out by local people in Lancashire during the public consultation which was undertaken for the site’s planning application to provide transparent and up to date data on our activities.

The ePortal allows users to look at data collected at a variety of monitoring stations around the site, put in place to monitor ground and surface water and air quality measurements, as well as information on the traffic flows of heavy goods vehicles to and from the exploration site. Noise monitoring data is also available and daily seismic monitoring data will also be provided during fracking operations. Information on the ePortal is updated on a monthly basis.

All our operations are strongly regulated by the Environment Agency, the Health and Safety Executive, the Oil and Gas Authority and the local planning authority, Lancashire County Council.

If you are interested in learning more about the Environment Agency’s role in regulating and monitoring our operations on our site, please click here.

If you want to learn about other ways we are protecting the environment at our Preston New Road site, watch this video here.

Did you know?

The overall carbon footprint of Shale Gas is


lower on average than that of imported Liquefied Natural Gas

Find out more