Press release

Environmental permits issued for Holmwood drilling site

The Environment Agency has issued environmental permits to Europa Oil & Gas Limited for the Holmwood site in Surrey.


The Environment Agency has issued environmental permits to the company to provide a high level of protection to the environment during its operations at the Holmwood site in Dorking, Surrey.

Before issuing the permits the Environment Agency carried out a detailed assessment of the application and considered all legal requirements, along with all comments received through two rounds of public consultation. The environmental permits issued set out the stringent conditions the site operator must comply with to ensure that the environment and local people are protected.

Europa Oil & Gas Limited will need to have all relevant permissions in place from other regulatory partners before it can start operations on site.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said:

We would like to thank everyone who responded to the public consultations. We have carefully considered all of the information received and are confident, in issuing these permits, that we have the right controls in place to ensure operations are carried out safely.

The Environment Agency plays a key role in protecting the environment. We take an evidence based approach to regulation and had to be satisfied that the necessary protections were in place before we would allow exploration to begin. We are confident that the legally binding conditions in the permits and our compliance checks will ensure that operations meet the highest standards.

We do understand the concerns that a large number of people have raised and we are committed to keeping local people informed of our work to regulate the site.

View the oil and gas mining waste permit issued for Holmwood Wellsite, Surrey.

Notes to editors

The permits authorise Europa Oil & Gas Limited to:

  • drill a new oil well at Holmwood
  • store oil on-site
  • manage any radioactive waste arising from these activities (a separate permit has been issued in this respect)

There is further information on how the Environment Agency determines applications, the time scales involved and how it regulates onshore oil and gas:

And information on radioactive waste permits:

Published 23 July 2018