Fracking is the process of drilling down into the earth before inserting a high-pressure water mixture to release gas and oil within rocks.
This allows drilling firms to access hard-to-reach gas and oil sources.
Although banned in Scotland, other parts of the UK are expected to legalise fracking in 2018, according to British shale gas companies.
This comes after another year of campaigners protesting with little progress.
Fracking could be introduced to the resource-rich area stretching from Lancashire to Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.
Currently, drilling licenses are only issued to select companies.
In the US, fracking has significantly boosted oil production and reduced gas prices.
Fracking is estimated to have offered gas security to the US and Canada for around the next 100 years.
Why is it controversial?
Fracking is controversial due to the potentially cancer-causing chemicals used to extract oil and gas, which could then contaminate local water supplies.
Some also argue, fracking, which requires a huge amount of water, may distract energy firms and the Government from investing in renewable energy sources.
The process has even been linked to the recent rise in earthquakes in Oklahoma as drilling can penetrate rock crisscrossed with tectonic faults, triggering such natural disasters.
Source: BBC and The Guardian