Shale Gas

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 13 June 2013.

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Photo of John Swinney John Swinney Scottish National Party

In response to Mr Fraser, I emphasised clearly the importance of undertaking due process to ensure that applications are properly considered. That is because I recognise the issues and concerns that Elaine Smith raises on her constituents’ behalf.

Two types of scrutiny would apply to any application in Scotland—one relates to the local authority and one relates to SEPA. There is, of course, a separate licensing process that the Department of Energy and Climate Change in the United Kingdom Government presides over. In the SEPA and local authority processes, there are clear expectations about the level of consultation that is required to be undertaken with communities, to ensure that the concerns that Elaine Smith raises are properly and fully considered. I certainly want to be confident that all authorities would take that approach, which is consistent with their existing responsibilities and obligations.