Monday, 26 June 2017

PR blitz to enable drilling for gas in Harlesden

Eschewing the use of the word 'fracking' London Local Energy LINK have launched a public relations blitz to persuade people that it will be fine to look for oil and gas in the Harlesden NW10 area. They claim to focus on the product, not the process, thereby ignoring issues around fracking or other extraction methods.

They state, without giving any evidence for the claim:
We start by correcting two key errors: Gas development is not surface intensive, and nor is local natural gas best left in the ground to fight carbon emissions and climate change.
We don’t want public acceptance or acquiescence. We want to create public enthusiasm. We ask for the media and the public to abandon outdated concepts and join us in an informed debate involving the many, not the few.
They outline their plan:
The White Heather Laundry at  what is now Artesian Close London NW10 8RW (see map),  was an extremely successful commercial laundry business that drilled a well for water in 1910.

According to contemporary records in the public and private domain, the White Heather Laundry found over 250 feet of oil shows below 1500 feet. That is a very significant amount, and there are many discoveries which produce from 50 feet thick shows -or less.  Equally, there are wells which tried to prove up oil fields from far thinner strata and were unsuccessful. LLE may fail too. But why should we not look?

From the laundry’s perspective, it wasn’t the water they needed, or at least it was too salty, bubbly and oily to be of any us to a laundry. 

The Willesden well didn’t find oil, but it did show indications of gas. LLE’s geological analysis is the intellectual property of London Local Energy Limited and we will not release this publicly at this time.
Returning to today,  London Local Energy wants to drill and analyse the cores from the NW10 area to a greater depth, with an eye on using today’s non-intrusive yet potentially highly productive methods. We can drill under the old wells from any number of locations from up to five miles away, although a gas fired power station* sounds a reasonable enough location and the owners of the power station are aware of our efforts.
*The power station behind the Leopold Primary School Annex in Brentfield Road (Previously the Brent Teachers' Centre)

LLE  conclude: 
We don’t see LLE’s resources as being game changers. We’re the wildcatters of Willesden, but we don’t look good in cowboy hats. This may not be an especially productive  gas field on a global scale, but it will be one that could make a significant contribution to both London’s energy security and carbon footprint. Let’s look!

After any license approval, we anticipate a two to three year process of exploration and analysis to assess if the geology supports a movement toward the next phase. That would be the appropriate time to have a debate over production.

London Local Energy’s 3 Step Plan:

1.     Oil and Gas Authority to open 15th Onshore Licensing Round as soon as possible

2.     On license award,  revisit proven hydrocarbon discoveries in London NW10

3.     If resources allow produce local onshore natural gas with minimal surface impact  and maximum CO2 reductions.


  1. Gosh! LLE Ltd have certainly 'created enthusiasm' in me. They sound like really nice people and they seem to want to do all this just for us! The whole process sounds so lovely that I'd really like them to come round and do a bit of that good old traditional London drilling and extraction in my back garden (as I'm sure they've already done in their own).
    Come on, Wembley, no more environmentalist naysaying.Get behind these visionaries!

    Mike Hine

  2. Yes we can't wait. Don't quite get minimal surface impact and CO2 reduction. If you're drilling successfully you'll be releasing CO2

  3. Drilling will release CO2 so how do you get maximum CO2 reduction??

  4. 'These visionaries', as Mike refers to them above, appear (from the Companies House online records) to be two 63-year olds, who only set up their company, London Local Energy Ltd, in May 2017.

    The company director is Graham Andrew Dean, a British citizen who has previously been a director of several other gas or oil related companies. His address is given as Kemp House, City Road, London EC1V 2NX, which is advertised online as a "virtual office address".

    The Company Secretary is Nicholas Grealy, a British resident Irish citizen whose main occupation is described as "Consultant". Mr Grealy was previously an officer of another company called London Local Energy Ltd, which was dissolved in November 2016. I doubt whether he has carried out any drilling for gas or oil in his back garden in Kingston-upon-Thames.

    I'm sorry, Mike, but given the information currently available on the company behind this PR exercise, they have not created any enthusiasm with this member of the public.


    1. As a result of some "research" for the comment above, I am getting bombarded with onscreen adverts for:

      'CAPITOL OFFICE - a virtual office in London from just £1.92 a week.'

      Beware - Big brother (or Google) is watching you!