NORTH Yorkshire County Council has today confirmed that it has fully signed off the planning conditions for fracking at Kirby Misperton in Ryedale.

Details of traffic management, prevention of mud on roads and the site's owners financial responsibility for restoration and aftercare, have now been agreed. 

A county council spokesman said: "These conditions have now been agreed and will be carefully monitored throughout the operation. 

"Third Energy is today delivering to the county council the formal seven day notification of commencement of development."

Richard Flinton, North Yorkshire’s chief executive, added: "The county council is very aware that this is a controversial project of major sensitivity and complexity and that there is widespread concern about the impact it may have upon North Yorkshire’s beautiful environment and upon climate change.

"We gave planning consent on a single site which already had drilling for gas on it and this was subject to rigorous planning conditions which we have now agreed.

"Our role now is to ensure that the planning conditions are fully discharged and monitored."

The county council gave planning consent subject to planning conditions to Third Energy to undertake hydraulic fracturing for shale gas on the Kirby Misperton site more than a year ago.

In a statement today, the county council stressed the Kirby Misperton planning permission was "a single decision on a single site in North Yorkshire" and has no bearing on future decisions.

A spokesman for Third Energy said the planning condition sign off means the company can begin work on things like sound barriers, but still need permission from the Environment Agency and the Oil and Gas Authority to begin fracking.

They added: "Third Energy is pleased that the final pre-commencement planning conditions have now been discharged.  This includes the traffic management plan which was approved today by North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) ahead of operations at its existing Kirby Misperton wellsite.

"The consultation response from NYCC highways stated ‘there are no local highway authority objections to the proposed development.’ We see this not as a victory but as a huge responsibility.

"During the development of this plan Third Energy consulted with the police and local community, to ensure its operations are safe and have minimal impact upon the local area. The KMA wellsite has existed for over 20 years without traffic incident, and coexists alongside Flamingo Land."