EGG Consultants Ltd were commissioned to review the adequacy and suitability for purpose of the Envireau Water (2017) report ‘Hydrogeological Risk Assessment, Markwells Wood Site, Forestside, west Sussex’, which forms a part of a UK Oil & Gas (UKOG) planning application for oil production from that site.
The Envireau Water report is the second attempt at a groundwater risk assessment made by the applicant (UKOG), the first produced by Hydrock (2016). That initial application gave rise to objections from the local water supply company, Portsmouth Water (PW), and from the Environment Agency (EA), specifically related to failure to consider the risks posed to groundwater, and in particular the Bedhampton & Havant springs, which supply upwards of 200,000 people in the Portsmouth district.
In this context, it is stated by Envireau Water that: “…the objections can be addressed…focusing in particular on clarification of the hydrogeological conceptual model upon which to base a robust risk analysis.”.
Unfortunately, the subsequent hydrogeological conceptualisation that underpins the risk assessment contains gross factual errors and misinterpretations of basic sources of information. The combined effect of these failings is to significantly undermine the credibility of the risk assessment. This explains why the water company (PW) and regulator (EA) have sustained their objections to the UKOG planning application.
The complete Technical Note may be downloaded here:
An earlier report by Environmental Geology & Geotechnical Consultants Ltd, focusing on the potential for karstic development in the Chalk aquifer in the vicinity of Markwells Wood, may be downloaded here: