Fracking (Measurement and Regulation of Impacts) (Air, Water and Greenhouse Gas Emissions) Bill (HC Bill 105)

A

BILL

TO

Require the Secretary of State to measure and regulate the impact of
unconventional gas extraction on air and water quality and on greenhouse gas
emissions; and for connected purposes.

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and
consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present
Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1 Contamination of water

The Secretary of State must, within 12 months of the passing of this Act, by
regulations, make provision for—

(a) mandatory testing for toxins in the ground water and local water
5supply in a given area

(i) before any fracking operations take place in that area; and

(ii) at least once every 3 months, or more frequently if so specified
in a relevant planning consent, during fracking operations;

(b) mandatory regular unannounced inspection of fracking sites by the
10Environment Agency, at intervals of no more than 6 months, to assess
whether best practice standards are being followed and to confirm well
casings integrity and related matters;

(c) arrangements for the appropriate authorities and agencies to receive,
consider and respond to complaints from local residents; and

(d) 15the long-term modelling of groundwater flows at each fracking site to
determine likely timeframes for the dispersal of any pollutants.

2 Monitoring of methane emissions

(1) The Secretary of State must, within 12 months of the passing of this Act, by
regulations, empower and require the Environment Agency to establish
20arrangements to—

(a) monitor fugitive methane emissions from fracking sites for both shale
gas and shale oil;

Fracking (Measurement and Regulation of Impacts) (Air, Water and Greenhouse Gas Emissions) BillPage 2

(b) establish a system for monitoring methane emissions from other
facilities related to the compression storage and distribution of shale
gas operations.

(2) The systems under subsection (1) must incorporate continuous measurement
5by both ground-based light detection and ranging (LIDAR) and top-down
satellite measurement.

3 Control of methane emissions

The Secretary of State must, within 12 months of the passing of this Act, by
regulations, prohibit—

(a) 10annual total losses of methane to the atmosphere from a single operator
in excess of 1 per cent of production, including exploration, extraction,
storage and distribution of shale gas;

(b) the venting of wells to the atmosphere during the exploratory phase,
the production phase or after wells become obsolete; and

(c) 15the flaring of wells.

4 Disposal of Waste Water

The Secretary of State must, within 6 months of the passing of this Act, make
arrangements, by regulations, to require that—

(a) the disposal of waste water from fracking facilities is via a licensed
20water treatment facility

(b) fracking waste water processes and outputs are assessed by the
Environment Agency; and

(c) fracking waste water is tested for the presence of radionuclides, and

(d)
if radionuclides are found in water on a fracking site, that such water is
25disposed of in a water treatment, or other, facility licensed to handle
radioactive waste.

5 Impact on local communities

The Secretary of State must within 6 months of the passing of this Act make
arrangements for an independent review and report on the—

(a) 30impact of fracking sites on the local community in terms of increased
traffic, increased road usageand loss of amenities, and

(b) the physical and mental health of people living near fracking sites.

6 Shale gas operator bond

(1) The Secretary of State must make arrangements by regulations, to require the
35deposit of a shale gas operator of a financial bond to guarantee—

(a) the making good of any damage to the environment, water supplies
and health of the local community; and

(b) the safe long-term abandonment of fracking sites, including capping
and post-abandonment monitoring, in the event of the bankruptcy of
40an operator.

Fracking (Measurement and Regulation of Impacts) (Air, Water and Greenhouse Gas Emissions) BillPage 3

7 Fiscal strategy

(1) The Secretary of State must within 6 months of the passing of this Act make
arrangements for an independent review and report on the—

(a) current, and

(b) 5potential

contribution to the delivery of climate change air quality standards of the
Government’s fiscal strategy in relation to unconventional gas extraction.

(2) The report and any recommendations of the review must be laid before the
House of Commons within 12 months of the passing of this Act.

(3)
10The laying of the report and recommendations under subsection (2) must be
accompanied by a statement by the Secretary of State responding to each
proposal, if any, of the independent review under subsection (1).

8 Regulations, extent, commencement and citation

(1) Regulations under this Act shall be made by statutory instrument and shall be
15subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of
Parliament.

(2) This Act extends to England and Wales.

(3) This Act comes into force on the day after the day on which it receives Royal
Assent.

(4) 20This Act may be cited as the Fracking (Measurement and Regulation of
Impacts) (Air, Water and Greenhouse Gas Emissions) 2016.