The mysterious case of Frack Free Witney

Has David Cameron instructed DECC to omit his Witney constituency from the areas currently under offer in the 14th round of onshore licensing? Below is a map of his constituency shown in blue, with adjacent constituencies outlined in black. The red boundaries with the hatched areas mark the 14th round offer acreage on offer. The acreage is made up of 10 km x 10 km blocks, based on the Ordnance Survey grid. The ‘island’ square to the east of Witney comprises nine such blocks. Existing onshore oil and gas exploration wells are shown by the red dots. DECC will be announcing the licence awards within the next couple of months.

Inexplicably, DECC has omitted from the offer a big swathe of eastern England, extending from David Cameron’s Witney constituency eastwards to the coast of East Anglia. I say ‘inexplicably’, because there is nothing about the geology of this region that particularly warrants its exclusion.