Lincoln Climate Commission submits second letter of objection to Biscathorpe oil operation

Tue, 08/10/2021 - 17:31

Following new evidence, members of the Lincoln Climate Commission submitted a second letter of objection on 9th August 2021 to the Edgon Resources’ application to drill for and extract oil from Biscathorpe in the Wolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Read the second letter below:


Dear Support Team, Thank you for your email of 9 th July 2021, inviting further comment on the above application. We would respectfully ask that you consider the following highly significant reports that have emerged since our previous submission.

1. The International Energy Association ‘flagship report’. The IEA’s press release on 18th May 2021 includes this stark assertion: “from today, no investment in new fossil fuel supply projects” This is part of their detailed and thoroughly researched roadmap, in order to give the world a chance of achieving the UN target of limiting global over-heating to 1.5 degrees.

It must be borne in mind that 1.5 degrees is not “safe”. Average global temperature has already risen by about 1.1 degrees. We can already see devastating effects in many parts of the world, including close to home. The County Council’s “Green Master Plan” refers to the UK Government’s aim of achieving net zero carbon by 2050, which it has announced in order not to exceed the 1.5o target. The IEA’s detailed evidence is given in the link above, so it is not appropriate to repeat it here. From the report, it is abundantly clear that the proposed development at Biscathorpe is incompatible with achieving the 1.5o target. It is incompatible with assuring future generations a stable climate conducive to human flourishing.

The IEA’s report makes it abundantly clear (“from today, no investment in new fossil fuel supply projects”) that Egdon Resources’ proposal is inconsistent with the intentions outlined in the County Council’s “Green Master Plan”.

2. IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (AR6): Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis published today (9th August 2021) warns clearly that the extreme weather events that we have witnessed recently, including wildfires, droughts and floods, will continue to increase if we fail to achieve net zero soon: “Global surface temperature will continue to increase until at least the mid-century under all emissions scenarios considered. Global warming of 1.5°C and 2°C will be exceeded during the 21st century unless deep reductions in carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas emissions occur in the coming decades.”

In his statement on the IPCC report, the UN Secretary-General said “Countries should also end all new fossil fuel exploration and production, and shift fossil fuel subsidies into renewable energy” Will Planners and Councillors ignore the IPCC and the plea of the UN Secretary-General? Lincolnshire is a low-lying county and susceptible to flooding due to sea level rise.

The IPCC’s AR6 report says “the likely global mean sea level rise by 2100 is… 0.44-0.76 m under the intermediate GHG emissions scenario (SSP2-4.5)”; and that “Global mean sea level rise… approaching 2 m by 2100 and 5 m by 2150… cannot be ruled out due to deep uncertainty in ice sheet processes”. Planners and Councillors should consider what the 1953 coastal floods would look like if sea levels had been just 0.5m higher.

3. Climate Change Committee’s Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA3), June 2021. Under the 2008 Climate Change Act, the CCC is the UK Government’s official independent advisor on climate change. Their CCRA3 report in June 2021 highlights risks due to climate change impacts in the UK: “there is now a 40% chance of the average annual global temperature reaching 1.5oC above pre-industrial levels in at least one of the next 5 years. Climate change is here, now.” And “reducing emissions is critical to reducing our climate change impacts, and is something we must do fast if we are to stay close to the Paris commitment of well below 2oC with an ambition to limit warming to 1.5oC.” The IEA report makes clear that commitment to the Paris Agreement requires ‘no investment in new fossil fuel supply projects’.

 4. Recent reports e.g. in Channel 4 news and have exposed the lobbying of fossil fuel companies, including in the UK. There is no global shortage of fossil fuels. As the IEA repost makes clear, it is much more urgent and strategically necessary to invest in renewables and energy efficiency.

We respectfully urge that in addition to our previous submission, you would weigh seriously the evidence of the above, and reject Egdon Resources’ application.

Yours faithfully,

Peter Allen-Williams (retd), C.Eng, MIWEM and Quaker

Melanie Carroll

Peter Crowther, Education Consultant, previously Head of Science at Bishop Grosseteste University

Dr Clive Cummins & Dr Mary Cummins, Independent Environmental Consultants

Nigel Curry, Visiting Professor at the University of Lincoln

Alexandra Foxley-Johnson, Lincoln Climate Commission Communications

Prof. Edward Hanna, FRMetS, Professor of Climate Science and Meteorology, School of Geography, University of Lincoln

Richard Jones, Managing Director, Amelio Solar Energy & EV Camel

Fen Kipley, 13 Green UK

Dr. Andrew Kythreotis Senior Lecturer, School of Geography, University of Lincoln

Matt Parr

Christopher Pugh, University of Lincoln Student, Lincoln Climate Commission Research Sub-Group Co-Chair

Geoff Stratford, founder member of Lincoln Climate Commission

Richard Tibenham, MCIBSE LCC LCEA, Director at Greenlite Building Physics

Anna Tsartsari, Director, Steff Wright, Chairman Gusto Group