|Smedley, P, Ward, R, Allen, G, Baptie, B, Daraktchieva, Z, Jones, D, Jordan, C, Purvis, R and Cigna, F. 2015. Site selection strategy for environmental monitoring in connection with shale-gas exploration: Vale of Pickering, Yorkshire and Fylde, Lancashire. British Geological Survey Internal Report, OR/15/067.|
This report outlines the strategies for site selection adopted as part of a baseline environmental monitoring investigation in connection with shale-gas exploration and development in the Vale of Pickering, North Yorkshire. The project forms an extension to an ongoing baseline investigation being carried out in the Fylde, Lancashire, and the current project incorporates an air-quality monitoring component that was not within the original remit of the Fylde study. The DECC-funded investigation is led by the British Geological Survey, and is being carried out as a collaboration with the Universities of Birmingham, Bristol, Liverpool, Manchester and York (National Centre for Atmospheric Science, NCAS) and Public Health England (PHE). The project incorporates work packages in monitoring of water quality, air quality and greenhouse gases, soil gas, ground motion and seismicity, and air radon and is being carried out over the period September 2015 to March 2016.
Site selection is a critical consideration in setting up a monitoring programme as chosen sites need to be representative of conditions to be tested. While sites will necessarily be subject to practical constraints (land access agreements, existing infrastructure, geological conditions, cost implications etc), site selection has a large part to play in ensuring collection of quantifiable, unbiased data. This report sets out the rationale for site selection in each of the work packages and the steps taken to ensure defensible site-selection decisions and to minimise the impact of practical constraints.