Fracking protesters to leave Ryedale
Anti-frackers are to pack up their camp in Kirby Misperton after declaring victory over Third Energy.
The company has scaled down its equipment on the site, meaning that no drilling would take place in the near future.
The Government is currently conducting a financial review into Third Energy and until that is complete it will not give the go-ahead to carry out the controversial practise.
A spokesman for the Kirby Misperton Protection Camp said: "It’s clear that Third Energy is not going to be fracking anytime soon, and so the time has come to begin packing up the Kirby Misperton Protection Camp.
"Ryedale’s victory is down to the many layers of the campaign working tirelessly together and all pulling in the same direction. We have achieved what many people said was an impossible task. The odds were stacked against us at KM8 - the pad was built, the well was drilled and all the necessary infrastructure was in place. If we can beat them at those odds, other communities can feel empowered to do the same.
"It has been an honour and a privilege to meet and know so many campaigners, and we offer our sincere gratitude to everyone who has been part of or supported KMPC.
"It’s been wet, it’s been cold and it’s been muddy, and we would like to thank all those who offered us warmth and rest in their homes. We thank everyone who gathered with us in the cold of last winter to build the camp, and those who came week after week, generously delivering food, water and wood, and of course the caring group who delivered lovingly made, hot meals during the busy times of action.
"We thank those who have donated money, and our friends in larger organisations for their generous support.
"We remain astounded at the brilliance of the Kirby Misperton Monitoring Group, who scrupulously collected vital data and compiled and reported regulation breaches. The equally awesome investigators, keyboard warriors and Freedom of Information wizards continue to inspire us with their thousands of hours of unseen work.
"A huge thanks to the team at the Cracking Fracking Cafe, who have kept the tea brewing throughout the winter, we could not have done it without you.
"Thank you to the children who brought sweetness and innocence to the gates: we pledge to continue our devoted efforts to deliver to you a frack free future.
"We now begin the process of returning the field to its former state and will be arranging community work days over the coming weeks, during which we look forward to celebrating with everyone who has been involved. Please look out for these dates to be announced and for the details of our final closing ceremony.
"We end this with a warning to any fracking company planning to exploit this land for your own profit and personal gain: Expect us."
A spokesperson for Third Energy said: “We are sure that the residents of Kirby Misperton who have had their daily lives disrupted by the activities of the protestors, many of whom are not local, will breathe a sigh of relief at the news they are leaving the area, as will our employees and suppliers who have been regularly intimidated and threatened. Third Energy has been drilling for and producing gas, and generating electricity, in North Yorkshire for over 20 years and nothing has changed. We will continue providing the gas and local employment the country so urgently needs.
"The UK has a strong regulatory framework in place, and it is understandably taking some time to make sure that our project near Kirby Misperton meets all of the requirements put in place by the government to protect the environment and communities in relation to onshore natural gas development.
"In January, the Secretary of State confirmed that he was satisfied that Third Energy has met all of the thirteen technical requirements set out in section 4A of the Petroleum Act 1998. We are currently working with the government on the final step of the regulatory process which involves providing the financial information requested to facilitate the final Secretary of State consent for our Hydraulic Fracture Stimulation programme near Kirby Misperton.
"On completion of the approval process we will finalise our operational arrangements and move forwards with the Hydraulic Fracture Stimulation and production of the KM-8 well; delivering some much needed gas for power. We thank the local community for its patience and can confirm that Third Energy plans to be working in the Vale of Pickering for many years to come.”