Tuesday, 30 April 2013
Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
Hydraulic Fracturing Policy
114. To ask the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources if he has had any discussions with the Minister for Environment in Stormont regarding the expansion of the area designated for hydraulic fracturing; if this runs contrary to awaiting the findings of the Environmental Protection Agency report; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20192/13]
No area of the Irish onshore has been designated for hydraulic fracturing. Accordingly, there can be no question of expanding an area, where no area has been so designated. As I have informed this House previously, the findings of the further EPA research will inform decisions on projects that propose the use of hydraulic fracturing as part of an unconventional gas exploration programme. There can be no decision on any such proposal until after there has been time to consider the EPA research findings. There is no change in this position.