Posts Tagged ‘frack off’

Ban fracking

January 26, 2015

The gas extracted from shale deposits is not a ‘bridge’ to a renewable energy future – it’s a gangplank to more warming and away from clean energy investments. — Anthony Ingraffea

If we are serious about avoiding dangerous climate change, the only safe place for shale gas remains in the ground. — Kevin Anderson

With unequivocal scientific evidence that burning fossil fuels is the principal cause of [climate change], the EAC’s conclusions are a beacon of light in a sea of expedient half truths. — Kevin Anderson

Fracking is often touted as a bridge fuel, it is not. It release methane, making it as polluting as burning coal. it pollutes ground water, triggers earthquakes.

Despite the ConDem government falling over backwards to promote shale gas, by paying for drilling, generous tax regime, relaxing planning controls, only eleven wells are planned.

An example of how rotten and corrupt the CondDem government, where their paymasters call the shots, is the leaked letter George Osborne has sent to cabinet colleges calling for racking to be fast tracked.

  • £5 million of taxpayer funding to providing independent advice to the public
  • make available public land including MoD land for fracking
  • build on existing network of neutral academic experts available to provide credible evidence-based views
  • Secretary of State can at his discretion” take the power to overrule local planning decisions
  • responding favourably to requests from fracking industry
  • ministers make dozens of interventions to fast-track fracking a personal priority
  • intervene in local planning applications

Osborne expects to see rapid progress on his list of demands.

An example of so-called neutral academic experts is petroleum engineer Prof Quentin Fisher at the University of Leeds:

It is disappointing to see a government committee putting the ill-informed views of anti-fracking groups ahead of evidence-based scientific studies.

Unless evidence to the contrary, it is reasonable to assume Quentin Fisher is an ill-informed mouthpiece for Dirty oil, as his ignorant ill-informed comment would demonstrate.

I do not think Anthony Ingraffea, a lifetime in the oil industry, a pioneer of many the techniques, and one of the strongest critics of fracking, is ill-informed.

Commenting on the Osborne letter, Friends of the Earth campaigner Tony Bosworth:

This letter shows government and industry working hand-in-glove to make sure fracking happens. Such collusion with a highly unpopular industry will just make fracking an even more politically toxic issue. The government should follow other countries and call a halt so we can assess the risks to the environment, people’s health and our climate.

FoE should stop pussyfooting around. We do not need a halt we need an outright ban.

What the leaked letter shows, apart from George Osborne acting for his paymasters, is that we must get dirty money out of politics, where politicians like Osborne are whoring for Big Business and Dirty Oil.

Protesters have seen off fracking in Balcombe, and it now seems Lancashire.

Protesters have seen off fracking in Romania, Poland, New York.

The House of Commons Environment Audit Committee has today called for a halt to fracking.

Today sees Members of the House of Commons vote on The Infrastructure Bill, which will give a green light to fracking, and make a mockery of any democratic accountability.

Please sign the petition URGENT, calling on MPs to vote against.

Also please sign the petition calling for a global ban on fracking.

And please sign the Stop Fracking petition from Tessa Munt.

Fracking is not a bridge fuel, any more than deepwater, Arctic, tar sands. We know we have to keep 80% of known carbon reserves in the ground. The fossil fuels we can burn, are a bridge fuel. If we explore for more, we have built expensive infrastructure with a lifetime of decades. There will be pressure to recoup that investment. Already Dirty Oil has trillions of dollars of stranded assets. That investment should go towards creating a renewable future, local energy grids.

Stop fracking censorship

January 10, 2015

It is bad enough David Cameron is in the pocket of the fracking industry, that our rights to object to fracking are being taken away.

Now we have a report on fracking the ConDem government are refusing to release. Even Members of Parliament are only being allowed to see a redacted copy.

This can only mean one thing. The report shows fracking not to be safe.

In a discussion between Russell Brand and George Monbiot, the discussion was politicians are owned by their paymasters. We see a prime example. We must get dirty money out of politics, and make it clear to the clowns in Westminster, they are there to act for us.

The fracking report has been redacted, and please do not laugh, ‘in the public interest’.

Within the next couple of weeks MPs will vote on The Infrastructure Bill, which proposes controversial changes to our Trespass Laws that will erode our land rights, and pave the way for fracking. Two Tory MPs have already urged David Cameron to release the report in full. Other MPs have also asked to see the complete report, yet still it remains redacted. It’s crucial that what’s hidden in this report is released before the Infrastructure Bill is finally voted on in Parliament, so that MPs can properly understand impacts that fracking will have on our house prices and our communities.

We all deserve to see the censored material in this important document that our government is keeping from us.

Please sign the petition to David Cameron demanding that the fracking report is placed in the public domain.

To add insult to injury, the ConDem government is planning to spend £80 million of our money, to fund the oil industry to drill exploration holes for fracking. No money for public services, but money can be found for the rich oil and gas industry.

The UK already has the most generous tax regime for the fracking industry, now we are paying them to drill.

We know that we cannot keep global temperature rises to below 2C (and even 2C limit will lead to more extreme weather events), unless we keep 80% of known reserves in the ground. Why are we drilling for more? Ever more dangerous sources of carbon: fracking, deepwater, Arctic, tar sands.

Please sign the petition calling on the ConDem government to end any payments to the fracking industry.

Tell David Cameron to frack off

June 4, 2014
Greenpeace frack David Cameron

Greenpeace frack David Cameron

In the local and European elections two weeks ago, the mainstream political parties got a drubbing. What difference has it made? Seemingly not a lot, either they are not listening or they are showing their usual arrogant contempt for the people.

LibDems have a toxic leader who makes them unelectable. What are they doing about it? Er nothing.

Labour are still offering the same hated and discredited policies as the Tories.

David Cameron has offered an EU referendum sometime in Never Never Land. Ed Miliband has simply said never.

Zac Goldsmith and Caroline Lucas have been pushing for some time for the right of recall of MPs, ie the electorate can fire their MP. Measures were announced in the Queen’s Speech today. Measures that are not worth the paper they are written on.

The Day after the elections, David Cameron announced changes that would allow fracking under private property, those measures were included in the Queen’s Speech today. Imagine had those measures been announced the day before the elections, not the day after, imagine the Green Party had been given the same airtime as UKip?

When Greenpeace today set up fracking outside the home of David Cameron, they were asked by the police to desist. When protesters objected to fracking at Balcombe, they were asked by the police to desist.

The move to allow fracking under private property is an attack on democracy by the 1%, who own the political establishment lock, stock and barrel.

Please sign the petition opposing this relaxation of the law. Do you really want fracking under your house?

It must be made very clear to Members of Parliament, they are not there to act for the 1% nor is it an opportunity to get their snouts in the trough, they are there to act for the 99%.


May 9, 2014

Fracking is a new, unproven technology, that risks contamination of ground water.

Balcombe High Court Victory

September 16, 2013
Balcombe High Court Victory

Balcombe High Court Victory

Community Protection Camp in Balcombe has been successfully defended at High Court in London this morning, against attempts by West Sussex County Council to help Cuadrilla disrupt the blockade.

Case adjourned until the 8th October with costs provisionally awarded against WSCC, whose case was deeply flawed and did not address any of the main issues, like right to protest.

West Sussex County Council granted Cuadrilla the right to drill, without any proper scrutiny taking place. At Parish Council, there had been no discussion, one of the Parish Councilors being a direct beneficiary.

Once again we see a council in the pocket of Big Business.

In a crude attempt to help Cuadrilla, the County Council tried to evict the protesters camped on the grass verges.

The council gave demonstrators formal notice last week that they were no longer able to protest on the council-owned highway outside the site where gas company Cuadrilla is undertaking exploratory drilling.

The protest camp refused to leave, and this morning both parties were at the Royal Courts of Justice in London.

But Mrs Justice Lang adjourned the application after describing it as “flawed”, with the result that if the council does not apply to restore it in a new form by October 8, it will be either withdrawn or dismissed.

The judge said that, although the case was presented as a straightforward matter of obtaining possession, it was more complicated as there was a need to balance the right to peaceful assembly and to demonstrate.

She had heard from counsel that the proceedings might well be academic as the planning permission granted to Cuadrilla three years ago will expire on 28 September and there was currently no application to extend it.

The company would not be permitted to drill after that date and it was likely that many campaigners would leave the site.

Juliette Harris, a Balcombe villager for more than 30 years, said:

Eighty-five per cent of people don’t want Cuadrilla in Balcombe.

The majority of the villagers have been supportive of the protesters, and they have been down there in their hundreds.

The protesters I have seen are decent, committed people who have been out in all weathers, and who have been demonised by the press and deterred by the police.

We are thrilled that the judge thought that West Sussex County Council’s application to evict was flawed. The council has done nothing to assist us and everything to help Cuadrilla.

It’s time the council paid attention because it is us who pay their wages.

Once again we see a council wasting public money to act against the interest of local people.

Assuming costs are awarded against the council, this should not be levied against local taxpayers. Councillors who approved this action should be surcharged.

This is what the fury’s all about: First photo of potential fracking site in heart of England that has sparked huge protests

August 8, 2013

* This rig has been drilling a six-inch exploratory borehole 3,000ft into the shale and limestone
*The controversial technique is expected to be used if fuel reserves are found at Balcombe, West Sussex
* Residents from Balcombe have made it clear they are opposed to any such thing
* According to Cuadrilla, which is licensed to carry out the Balcombe test drill, the operation will continue for two-and-a-half months

Surrounded by fields and woodland, this is the drilling rig that has sparked fierce protests about the future of Britain’s countryside.

Since Friday, it has been drilling a six-inch exploratory borehole 3,000ft into the Sussex shale and limestone in search of oil and gas.

Although there are no immediate plans to use fracking at the site, the controversial technique is expected to be deployed if fuel reserves are found.

Cuadrilla site at Balcombe

Cuadrilla site at Balcombe

Fracking involves pumping water, sand and chemicals deep underground at high pressure to crack rocks and retrieve the natural gas trapped inside.

Opponents say the process causes tremors, noise and pollution.

If used, the night sky around the village of Balcombe in West Sussex could become lit up with ‘flares’ of burning gas similar to those seen on oil rigs.

Campaigners at the gate

Campaigners at the gate

Sussex countryside

Sussex countryside

Pictures of the Balcombe rig emerged as George Osborne declared it would be a ‘tragedy’ if Britain does not take advantage of shale gas exploration.

In a controversial intervention, the Chancellor distanced himself from comments made by his father-in-law Lord Howell last week, in which the Tory peer claimed that fracking should only take place in the ‘desolate’ North East.

Mr Osborne said: ‘It would be a real tragedy for Britain to basically allow this energy revolution to bypass our country.

Fracking protest at Balcombe in Sussex

Fracking protest at Balcombe in Sussex

Get the Frack Out of Sussex

Get the Frack Out of Sussex

‘It would mean we would have much higher energy costs than other countries, it would mean jobs would go to those other countries and businesses would go to those other countries, and we would all pay a very heavy price for that.’

But residents from Balcombe have made it clear they are opposed to any such thing.

More than 30 campaigners, including the daughter of singers Chrissie Hynde and Ray Davies, have been arrested after clashes with police outside the site.

According to Cuadrilla, which is licensed to carry out the Balcombe test drill, the operation will continue for two-and-a-half months.

It is also looking to acquire up to six more sites for shale gas exploration.

Drilling could begin on two of these as early as 2014.

Despite living in neighbouring Kent, Energy Minister Michael Fallon is keen that the dash for gas extends across a vast swathe of the South.

He said there may be opportunities to exploit shale gas from Dorset, through Hampshire, Surrey, Sussex and Kent.
Yesterday Downing Street endorsed his enthusiasm.

Asked about the energy minister’s assertion, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: ‘The PM has no reason to think that Michael Fallon is wrong about that.

‘The Prime Minister thinks that shale gas represents an exciting potential resource for Britain that could contribute to our energy security.

‘Fracking will only be allowed where it is safe and poses no risk to the environment.’

Mr Osborne made it clear that communities where shale gas extraction takes place will be compensated. He said: ‘We’ve designed a regime that is very generous for local communities where this activity might take place.’

But Craig Bennett, of Friends of the Earth, said: ‘Fracking poses a real threat to the local environment and causes more climate-wrecking pollution.

‘It’s little wonder communities across the country, including the Tory shires, are mobilising against it.’

'We're in luck. The fracking blocks our view of the wind turbine.'

‘We’re in luck. The fracking blocks our view of the wind turbine.’

Published by The Mail.

Although there are no immediate plans for fracking, and Cuadrilla has no licence to frack, Cuadrilla has made it clear it will apply for a licence to frack if it finds shale gas deposits.

Anyone who has travelled by train from Victoria to Brighton, or flown in or out of Gatwick Airport, will know the Sussex countryside of green fields, trees, small woodlands and bushy hedges. Fracking would turn this lovely landscape into a post-Apocalypse industrial hell. Plus pollution of groundwater, earthquakes, road traffic, noise, dirt, light pollution at night.

George Osborne demonstrates his ignorance of fracking matches that of his ignorance of economics.

Fracking will give a temporary respite in our insatiable demand for gas, is unlikely to bring prices down.

Osborne has given oil companies tax concessions that turns the principle of The Polluter Shall Pay on its head, into one where The Polluter Shall be Paid.

We need a secure energy policy that exploits renewable resources.

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