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Homepage > Environment > Planning > A - Z of Planning > Summary of recent Coal Bed Methane (CBM), Coal Mine Methane (CMM) and natural gas sites in Staffordshire

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Summary of recent Coal Bed Methane (CBM), Coal Mine Methane (CMM) and natural gas sites in Staffordshire

1. The sites

Land adjacent to A53 Whitmore Road, Seabridge - StrataGas PLC

Land off Cocknage Road - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CMM) now owned by Infinis Energy

Lordsley / Trentham Quarry - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Brancote Sewage Treatment Works - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Gorse Lane, Fradley - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Plot 12 Keele University and Business Park – Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Land at Knowl Wall Farm, Tittensor – Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

Land at Groundslow Farm, near Tittensor - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

Land at Swynnerton Estate - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

Land at Spot Grange Farm – Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

Three Nooks Farm – Sever Star Natural Gas (NATURAL GAS) now owned by Infinis Energy

2. Detailed examples

Land off Cocknage Road - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CMM) now owned by Infinis Energy (Coal-Mine Methane)

Plot 12 Keele University and Business Park - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy (Coal Bed Methane)

Land at Spot Grange Farm - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy (Coal Bed Methane).

(Last updated 16 April 2019)


 

The sites

Land adjacent to A53 Whitmore Road, Seabridge - StrataGas PLC

Application for exploratory drilling of a four well coal bed methane pilot scheme known as 'The Swallowcroft Coal Bed Methane Pilot Project' - refused 19 July 2001 by Members against officer recommendation to permit for a temporary 2 year period (ref. N.00/0620). Refused - 25 July 2001. Appeal – dismissed on 19 November 2002.

Land off Cocknage Road - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CMM) now owned by Infinis Energy

Application to extract and utilise mine gas (methane) from the former Florence Colliery for the production of electricity comprising of the installation of a temporary borehole platform and drill, erection of gas extraction and power generation plant and ancillary apparatus and construction of a new site access (ref. S.06/25/401 M). Granted – 7 December 2007. Operational with effect from 22 June 2009.

Installation of gas meter cabinet for the importation of natural gas (ref. S.15/15/401 M) Granted – 22 March 2016.

Lordsley / Trentham Quarry - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Construction of a drilling site together with associated access to drill an exploratory coal bed methane borehole (ref. N.07/21/250 M). Granted – 23 January 2008. Drilled in 2008.

Brancote Sewage Treatment Works - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Construction of a drilling site together with an associated access to drill an exploratory coal bed methane borehole (ref. S.08/09/437 MW). Granted – 14 October 2008 – not implemented.

Application for a new planning permission to replace extant planning permission S.08/09/437 MW, for the construction of drilling site together with an access to drill an exploratory coal bed methane borehole (ref. S.11/18/437 MW). Granted – 22 December 2011 (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 22 December 2014.

Gorse Lane, Fradley - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Construction of a drilling site together with associated access to drill an exploratory coal bed methane borehole (ref. L.08/01/858 M). Granted – 6 March 2008. Drilled in 2008.

Plot 12 Keele University and Business Park – Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy

Construction of a drilling site together with associated access to drill two exploratory coal bed methane boreholes (ref. N.08/20/299 M). Granted – 8 April 2009 - operational (drilling commenced 16 June 2010) - one borehole has been drilled.

Variation of Conditions 5 and 8 of planning permission N.08/20/299 M to enable the second of the 2 approved wells to be drilled and to allow a reasonable time period for the well to be drilled (ref. N.11/10/299 M). Granted – 19 August 2011.

Variation of condition 4 of planning permission N.11/10/299 M to extend life of planning permission to 22 December 2017 (relating to exploratory coalbed methane boreholes) (ref. N.12/10/299 M). Granted – 21 June 2013. Planning permission expired on 22 December 2017.

Land at Knowl Wall Farm, Tittensor – Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

The drilling of boreholes for the exploration, testing and appraisal of Coal Bed Methane gas (CBM) and the subsequent development and operation of a hub for CBM gas production (ref. S.09/13/436 M). Granted – 26 February 2010 – (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 26 February 2013.

Land at Groundslow Farm, near Tittensor - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

The drilling of boreholes for the exploration, testing and appraisal of Coal Bed Methane gas (CBM) and the subsequent development and operation of a hub for CBM gas production (ref. S.09/14/437 M). Granted – 24 March 2010 – (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 24 March 2013.

Land at Swynnerton Estate - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

Drilling of boreholes for the exploration, testing and appraisal of coal bed methane (CBM) gas and the subsequent development and operation of a hub for CMB gas production (ref. S.10/07/438 M). Granted – 22 September 2010 – (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 22 September 2013.

Land at Spot Grange Farm – Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy

The drilling of boreholes for the exploration, testing and appraisal of coal bed methane (CMB) gas and the subsequent development and operation of a hub for CMB gas production
(ref. S.10/08/439 M). Granted – 12 November 2010 (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 12 November 2013.

Three Nooks Farm – Seven Star Natural Gas (NATURAL GAS) now owned by Infinis Energy

Permission to repair two existing boreholes and appraise the natural gas reservoir and permission extract underground gas for power generation (ref. SM.11/18/161 M granted 28 July 2012 and SM.12/06/161 M granted 23 May 2013). The repair of the existing boreholes and appraisal has taken place.

Permission to extract underground gas for power generation (ref. SM.12/06/161 M granted 23 May 2013) (not implemented). Planning permission lapsed on 23 May 2016.

Permission to extract underground gas for power generation (ref. SM.14/11/161 M granted 17 April 2015) Development commenced on 4 April 2018 (ref. SM.14/11/161 M D2).


 

Detailed examples

Land off Cocknage Road - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CMM) now owned by Inifinis Energy - Coal-Mine Methane

Application to extract and utilise mine gas (methane) from the former Florence Colliery for the production of electricity comprising of the installation of a temporary borehole platform and drill, erection of gas extraction and power generation plant and ancillary apparatus and construction of a new site access (ref. S.06/25/401 M). Granted – 7 December 2007. Operational with effect from 22 June 2009.

Planning issues – minerals and energy planning policy; impact on environment and amenity – visual, historic environment, biodiversity, noise, dust, air quality and health, traffic, ground stability, emergency planning, alternatives locations, Green Belt.

Not Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) development.

Green field site.

Gas extraction and electricity generation – notice of commencement with effect from 12 March 2010.

This application was to extract and utilise mine gas (methane) associated with the former deep-mine coal workings known as Florence Colliery near to Lightwood, Stoke-on-Trent.

The drilling site is in Staffordshire; the former Florence Colliery is in Stoke-on-Trent.

Phased development

  • Phase 1 – site investigations and appraisal - 12-16 weeks including 3 weeks drilling:

    • Directional drilling – depth 337 metres

    • Drill site area 70 metres x 50 metres

    • 30 metre drill rig – 24/7 drilling

  • Phase 2 – installation of gas extraction and electricity generating equipment – if Phase 1 successful – then an estimated to last 25 years:

    • Electricity generators and transformers.

    • Noise reduction measures – including screen bunds and fencing.

    • 24/7 operation.

Plot 12 Keele University and Business Park - Nexen Exploration UK Ltd now owned by IGas Energy - Coal Bed Methane

Construction of a drilling site together with associated access to drill two exploratory coal bed methane boreholes (ref. N.08/20/299 M)

Granted – 8 April 2009 - operational (drilling commenced 16 June 2010).

Planning issues – minerals and energy planning policy; impact on environment and amenity – visual, noise, odour, traffic and ground water pollution.

Not EIA development

The proposal was to drill two pilot coal bed methane (CBM) boreholes to include lateral sections within the coal, and production test the CBM gas as a sustainable energy source for Keele University. The proposals are made in partnership with Keele University as one element of a wider sustainable energy strategy for the University in their aim to become ‘carbon neutral’ within ten years.

Phased development

  • Phase 1 – site investigations and appraisal - 30 to 75 days

    • Directional drilling – depth circa 2000 feet

    • Drill site area 0.25 ha

    • 38 metre drill rig - 24/7 drilling

  • Phase 2 - extended production test - 30 to 180 days

    • To assess the quality and quantity of gas

Application made to extend the time to drill and assess the site to 22 December 2017 (relating to exploratory coalbed methane boreholes). (ref. N.12/10/299 M) – granted on 21 June 2013.

Land at Spot Grange Farm - Greenpark Energy Ltd (CBM) now owned by IGas Energy - Coal Bed Methane.

The drilling of boreholes for the exploration, testing and appraisal of coal bed methane (CMB) gas and the subsequent development and operation of a hub for CMB gas production
(ref. S.10/08/439 M)

Granted – 12 November 2010.

Planning issues – minerals and energy planning policy; impact on environment and amenity – Green Belt, noise, traffic and highway safety.

EIA development – voluntary Environmental Statement.

Phased development

  • Phase 1 site establishment – six weeks.

  • Phase 2 drilling – 17 weeks.

    • Directional drilling – depth up to 1400 metres.

    • 30 metre drill rig - 24/7 drilling.

  • Phase 3 production (if results are successful).

    • Up to 20 years part of a “production hub”.

  • Phase 4 – capping and restoration.

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