Fermanagh land owners have offered their fields and countryside to fracking company Tamboran, it has been claimed.

Local businesses have also sought to forge links with Tamboran in the hope of accessing shale gas.

As local fracking opponents keep a close eye for Tamboran trucks arriving on the potential fracking sites (the epicentre being around Big Dog Mountain and Lough Formal in the hills between Garrison, Belcoo and Derrygonnely), Regional Director Tony Bazley insists: “We … will go on.” Addressing an energy conference in Belfast recently, Mr. Bazley, from Newtownards, showed a photo of a six acre frack pad Tamboran plans to build 60 of these in Fermanagh, spaced two-three kilometres apart, with between 12-20 well pads on each site.

He stated that this would “reduce landscape impact,” adding that “water is used from the site, recycled on the site in a closed system – that means far less traffic than you get in the United States.” He claimed that, in Canada, “you can drive past one of those sites without realising they are there.” During his presentation Mr. Bazley said it was a “myth” that “all people in Fermanagh are against [fracking].” He told delegates: “We’ve had offers of land, many job applications and a warm welcome from many people within the community. The silent majority are there.” He outlined that Tamboran are “required” to drill a borehole for fresh shale samples later this year (2013) or early next year, with “no fracking involved”.

He continued: “Will people worry about that? We hope that people who are uncertain about shale gas will act responsibly about this and will listen to what is being said: there is no danger in these initial holes.” Tamboran “have to make a drill or drop decision at that point. If the samples come up and don’t look quite the way we’d like them, then the company will walk away.

“We are 90 per cent certain that’s not going to happen frankly. We wouldn’t be here and wouldn’t have spent the millions we’ve already spent. We think we will go on”.

When asked if Tamboran had anything to do with the gas pipe line coming to County Fermanagh, Mr. Bazley replied: “We have nothing to do with that gas pipeline planned to go out to Enniskillen.

“We didn’t know about that, but that’s a bonus [because] if gas is found, it will bring those pipelines much closer to us and it will make the whole job of getting the gas back into the system less expensive.”