Francis Egan, Chief Executive Officer of the leading onshore shale gas operator Cuadrilla, said: “We note that the Committee on Climate Change report published today recognises that we will continue to be using significant quantities of natural gas in the UK out to 2050 and beyond in conjunction with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology and in producing hydrogen as an alternative energy for the future.
“We also note the assumption in the report that the CO2 and methane emissions generated in importing natural gas into the UK over huge distances by ship and by pipeline are not to be accounted for by the UK. Imported gas therefore lands into the UK effectively emission free. This smacks of creative carbon accounting and is not a credible or safe assumption.
“All concerned about addressing climate change should accept that using natural gas extracted here in the UK, such as the 1,300 trillion cubic feet beneath our feet in the Bowland Shale, is environmentally far more responsible than importing gas from thousands of miles away.
“The committee’s report highlights some tough proposals if we are to become net zero by 2050, but it is also clear that our demand for gas will remain and could be 86% imported gas by then if we don’t establish our own source.
“For these reasons we urge the Government to support our request for a review of the regulations and assist the onshore shale gas industry in becoming commercially viable and assisting the country in achieving our ambitious climate change aims.”