A decision on a controversial test drilling plan which could lead to fracking in Bassetlaw has been postponed.
The application by energy firm IGas was recommended for approval as it went before Nottinghamshire County Council on Wednesday.
But after hours of debate the authority’s planning committee decided to delay a decision until November because of a late representation received from Friends of the Earth.
Supporters say the project could bring jobs and investment to the area as well as providing an alternative energy source.
But opponents say it could impact on wildlife and the environment.
Sally Gill, the council’s planning manager previously said: “Island Gas has been able to demonstrate how they intend to make sure that the effects of the drilling can be effectively managed to make sure they do not become unacceptable to the local area and local community.”
The site in Mission Springs, north Nottinghamshire, is a former Cold War missile launch site and experts believe a significant amount of shale gas lies below ground.
Wednesday’s adjournment at County Hall in West Bridgford means it has now taken more than a year to decide the application.
David Larder, chairman of campaign group Bassetlaw Against Fracking, said previously: “Every community approached across the country has opposed the introduction of fracking, which will industrialise rural areas.”
The plan, if approved, is to set up a temporary well site which involves the drilling of two exploratory shale gas wells to find out if the site is likely to contain shale gas.
Fracking is already widely used in North America, and several applications are now being considered across the UK.