MVA ASOCIADOS. Montalvo Villaseñor Abril

Fracking in Spain: update

Juridical controversy between Spanish Government and Regions on fracking has reached the highest level.

On October 23rd, Spanish Parliament passed an Act authorizing fracking for either investigation or exploitation of shale gas reservoirs. Additionally, the Act sets forth the obligation for gas companies applying for the necessary permits to carry out an environmental impact assessment of fracking activities within the authorization proceedings.

The new Act evidences the two-folded intention of central Government (which promoted it). In the one hand, it is aimed to allowing fracking as an activity to either finding or extracting shale gas, since it can reduce the Spanish dependence of exterior energy markets. Moreover, the use of fracking was not explicitly regulated in the Spanish hydrocarbons act, but since different permits have already been granted for shale gas prospection to energy companies, for which operation use of fracking is needed, explicitly regulation enhances legal certainty for operators.

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