UK Oil & Gas PLC (London AIM: UKOG) notes that Surrey County Council (“SCC”) has today refused planning consent for the Company’s 100% owned Loxley-1/1z Portland gas appraisal project.
This decision is contrary to the recommendation of the Council officers’ report which recommended approval, all issues concerning planning, environmental and highways having been resolved to their professional satisfaction.
Crucially, the decision also ignores the key role domestic natural gas plays in the government’s stated low-carbon hydrogen policy in which natural gas is reformed into clean-burning hydrogen.
Low carbon hydrogen is a key element of government infrastructure strategy and is vital to help achieve net zero and underpin the UK’s recovery from record Covid-19 induced debt levels.
The Company is carefully considering its position but is likely to lodge an appeal on the grounds that the decision is unreasonable given the evidence presented and the Council officers’ positive recommendation. Further developments will be advised in due course.
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