First wave of 27 licences granted, but local planning permission will still be required for drilling to begin
Most experts warn that fracking would be needed to extract commercial quantities of oil from the region
Fracking has transformed the energy market in the US but critics say it will cause untold damage
Chris Smith says anti-fracking campaigners’ environmental fears are ‘definitely exaggerated’
Experts say more information is needed to assess the safety of fracking in the UK
Activists force way into Cuadrilla’s HQ and glue themselves to railings outside London PR firm
Church seeks rights just days after clergy condemn fracking as risk to 'God's creation'
More arrests in West Sussex village throw spotlight on contentious issue of shale gas exploration
Deals are designed to kick start the hunt for shale gas, but environmentalists are furious
Total wants to explore for shale gas in UK but is frustrated by lack of licensing information
Idea that gas fields location Blackpool will become UK’s 'Dallas' dismissed as a "dangerous fantasy"
Lord Smith gives guarded support for fracking as he tackles government over green issues
Opinion roundup: Breivik's brain, Qatada's extradition, and the dilemmas of fracking and the sex industry
Why fracking could prove a goldmine for the town deserted by the political parties
Europe’s dependence onRussian gas could be over -but at what cost to theenvironment?