Cuadrilla to install seismic monitors

Jan. 31, 2013 at 7:17 AM

STAFFORD, England, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- British energy company Cuadrilla Resources said it plans to install seismic monitoring equipment at a shale natural gas project in northwestern England.

Equipment installed at a shale natural gas site in Lancashire is expected give the company warnings to prevent seismic activity associated with shale natural gas exploration techniques.

"One of the most important features of this system will be to demonstrate that any fractures created by hydraulic fracturing stay thousands of feet below the aquifer," Cuadrilla Chief Executive Officer Francis Egan said in a statement.

"It will be an effective way of demonstrating that the process is indeed no threat to water supplies."

British Energy Secretary Ed Davey said last month that London was lifting a ban on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, of shale natural gas resources in light of new risk controls based on a "traffic light" system. Fracking operations were suspended after Cuadrilla in 2011 reported minor tremors associated with natural gas operations in the country.

Cuadrilla said in a statement that it believed there was a layer of gas about 1-mile thick under Lancashire. The British Geological Survey in a 2010 study said the shale gas reserve potential could be as large as 5.3 trillion cubic feet.

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