Public Consultation: Unconventional Gas Exploration & Extraction

Unconventional Gas Exploration and Extraction is an emerging issue in Ireland, in particular with regard to the use of hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) technology.  Recognising the need for detailed scientific information, the EPA initially commissioned preliminary desk research which was published in May 2012 which is available here. This information has been used, along with other sources such as European Commission reports, to assist in a scoping exercise for a more extensive and comprehensive study of the process.  A steering committee has developed proposed Terms of Reference for an extensive and comprehensive programme of research.


On behalf of the Steering Committee, the EPA has now launched a public consultation on the proposed Terms of Reference document.


A dedicated e-mail address,, has been set up to receive all submissions on the Terms of Reference document.  Interested parties and individuals are invited to submit comments to the EPA using this e-mail address only.  Please note that submissions cannot be considered if:

  • They are submitted after the deadline of 8th March 2013;
  • They do not relate to the contents of the document;
  • They contain personal accusations, irrelevant or offensive statements/material.


A sub-group of the Steering Committee will assess all valid submissions and take them into account when finalising Terms of Reference for the research programme. All valid submissions will be made available upon request (individuals who wish to remain anonymous should note this point).


Further information on this process is contained in the press release issued to announce this consultation.