Red tape is holding back attempts to develop a fracking industry in the UK, an influential panel of peers has warned.
The House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee urged the government to simplify regulation to ensure exploratory drilling for shale gas could take place.
It said that despite claims that the UK was going ‘all out for shale’, no applications to undertake fracking had reached the Environment Agency since 2012.
Committee chairman Lord MacGregor said: “Developing a successful shale gas and oil industry in the UK must be an urgent national priority.
“Only exploratory drilling with hydraulic fracturing, then appraisal, can show how much of the UK’s shale resource can be developed economically. But there seems to be a regulatory logjam.
“The government must do more to simplify regulation to ensure that exploratory drilling and development can go ahead. Regulation around shale should be robust, but should move quickly and be easy to understand.”