Department for Energy and Climate Change written question – answered on 23rd February 2015.

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Photo of Anne McIntosh Anne McIntosh Chair, Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, if his Department will exercise the precautionary principle for each application for a licence to frack hydraulically for shale gas.

Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Minister of State (Department for Business, Innovation and Skills), Minister of State for Portsmouth, The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

The licences do not give permission for any operation, including hydraulic fracturing. I can confirm that we will require a hydraulic fracturing plan to be submitted for any fracturing of shale, which must be approved by DECC before the fracturing operations commence. We have one of the most robust regulatory systems in the world for shale gas, including a traffic light system to measure seismic activity to allow operations to be suspended if activity is detected above a defined level.

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