Anger over Lords' call for government to speed up fracking developments

MEMBERS of an anti-fracking campaign group have reacted angrily to suggestions that the government should make the search for shale gas “an urgent priority” across the region.

Frack Free North Yorkshire, set up to support the fight against the controversial process across York and Ryedale, has so far campaigned tirelessly against planning applications from drilling companies since the area was identified as somewhere potentially suitable for fracking.

Russell Scott, from the campaign group, said the government was refusing to listen to their concerns and believed that the negatives of fracking far outweigh any positives the government was suggesting.

He said: “The House of Lords desperate push to impose fracking on our communities is another example of this government not listening to concerns of the public.

“The risks associated with fracking far outweigh the positives. This country needs an energy plan built around clean, reliable and renewable energy. The public want this approach but yet again the government is not listening.”

In a report from the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee calls were made for the government to speed up fracking developments across the country with suggestions that it would have “substantial benefits” including reducing energy imports and creating new jobs.

Chairman of the committee Lord MacGregor said: “The committee strongly supports the Government’s decision to go ‘all out for shale.’

“But here in the UK we have not yet left the starting gate. Developing a successful shale gas industry in the UK must be an urgent national priority.”

Worries from residents living in the area have been raised previously about the potential for trespassing laws to change which would allow drilling to take place under people's homes without their consent.

However a recent YouGov survey of 1.898 people showed that the majority of the population - a total of 74 per cent - were against changing the laws.

Members of Greenpeace, Friends of The Earth and Frack Free North Yorkshire have also raised concerns about water pollution and even the shocking potential for chemicals from the fracking process to cause cancer but the Committee said that “risks of harm to the environment or human health are low” and that “complex regulation may be causing unnecessary delays.”

Comments (9)

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10:21am Fri 9 May 14

uriahh says...

Yet again the extremist faction within the Green Brigade is substituting hysteria and alarmism, misinformation and dogma for the necessary reasoned debate based on factual evidence and the national interest. After, yet again losing the debate, no doubt there will also be the usual personal abuse against those wanting a rapid but properly controlled and monitored development of UK shale gas assets.

I put several points made by this individual that should have been challenged and questions that should have been asked by the journalist responsible for this item:

1. the drilling of the vertical boreholes needed would be no different to any other drilling for oil, gas, water or whatever.
2. the horizontal drilling of the strata to be fracked would be 100's of metres below ground and not in any sense any risk to land usage or houses and structures above. The same applies to the actual fracking operation.
3. the existing trespass laws were never intended to apply to such operations and constitute no potential damage or nuisance.
4. we still await the Green's solution to providing cheaper energy using renewables: increases in energy efficiencies apply to all power generation systems as well as renewables and are not an advantage or saving solely gained by renewables. Renewables such as biomass are not only more expensive but effectively provided no CO2 savings given the transport costs involved. Renewables such as wind turbines and solar panels act within a far more expensive base load system which includes an additional allocated100% capacity alternative power generation and extensive additional power transmission works to maintain power supplies during no/low wind and sun conditions. For Wind Turbines this 100% standby capacity has to be Gas Turbine, as confirmed by experts appointed by the government, which would generate 70-80% of the overall WT/GT standby system power with its own CO2 emissions.
5. The Ukraine problem and ongoing Middle East problems only illustrates that we need secure UK gas supplies, not simply for power but also for heating.
6. Even the IPCC has admitted that they have failed to reduce global CO2 emissions, largely because of the Developing world's ever expanding coal fired and oil fired power generation system capacities. The UK's CO2 reductions, bought at an unaffordable massive cost are a very, very small proportion of the current global CO2 emission increases, i.e. they are an ineffective investment driving down our competitiveness and potential export trade.
Yet again the extremist faction within the Green Brigade is substituting hysteria and alarmism, misinformation and dogma for the necessary reasoned debate based on factual evidence and the national interest. After, yet again losing the debate, no doubt there will also be the usual personal abuse against those wanting a rapid but properly controlled and monitored development of UK shale gas assets. I put several points made by this individual that should have been challenged and questions that should have been asked by the journalist responsible for this item: 1. the drilling of the vertical boreholes needed would be no different to any other drilling for oil, gas, water or whatever. 2. the horizontal drilling of the strata to be fracked would be 100's of metres below ground and not in any sense any risk to land usage or houses and structures above. The same applies to the actual fracking operation. 3. the existing trespass laws were never intended to apply to such operations and constitute no potential damage or nuisance. 4. we still await the Green's solution to providing cheaper energy using renewables: increases in energy efficiencies apply to all power generation systems as well as renewables and are not an advantage or saving solely gained by renewables. Renewables such as biomass are not only more expensive but effectively provided no CO2 savings given the transport costs involved. Renewables such as wind turbines and solar panels act within a far more expensive base load system which includes an additional allocated100% capacity alternative power generation and extensive additional power transmission works to maintain power supplies during no/low wind and sun conditions. For Wind Turbines this 100% standby capacity has to be Gas Turbine, as confirmed by experts appointed by the government, which would generate 70-80% of the overall WT/GT standby system power with its own CO2 emissions. 5. The Ukraine problem and ongoing Middle East problems only illustrates that we need secure UK gas supplies, not simply for power but also for heating. 6. Even the IPCC has admitted that they have failed to reduce global CO2 emissions, largely because of the Developing world's ever expanding coal fired and oil fired power generation system capacities. The UK's CO2 reductions, bought at an unaffordable massive cost are a very, very small proportion of the current global CO2 emission increases, i.e. they are an ineffective investment driving down our competitiveness and potential export trade. uriahh
  • Score: 0

10:22am Fri 9 May 14

mjgyork says...

Before these groups dismiss fracking out of hand, perhaps they might consider how we might service our energy needs in the short an/or long term future. One is to leave ourselves reliant on the vicissitudes and political vagaries of Russia. Alternatively we could import electricity from France, where it would be generated by nuclear fuels. Another option to which the same people are against the UK developing for itself. I am a lot closer to the end of my life than the beginning. I have no children and will not be getting any. There is no reason why I should care at all - but I do. To those who do I say: to leave any of the scenarios I have outlined - and there others which are even worse - as a legacy to yours, is something they will not thank you for.
Before these groups dismiss fracking out of hand, perhaps they might consider how we might service our energy needs in the short an/or long term future. One is to leave ourselves reliant on the vicissitudes and political vagaries of Russia. Alternatively we could import electricity from France, where it would be generated by nuclear fuels. Another option to which the same people are against the UK developing for itself. I am a lot closer to the end of my life than the beginning. I have no children and will not be getting any. There is no reason why I should care at all - but I do. To those who do I say: to leave any of the scenarios I have outlined - and there others which are even worse - as a legacy to yours, is something they will not thank you for. mjgyork
  • Score: 2

10:53am Fri 9 May 14

The Great Buda says...

Once again "uriahh" posts a long and winding comment on a fracking story. Yet has nothing to say about anyother story in the York area.

Company stooge?
Once again "uriahh" posts a long and winding comment on a fracking story. Yet has nothing to say about anyother story in the York area. Company stooge? The Great Buda
  • Score: -5

11:05am Fri 9 May 14

uriahh says...

The Great Buda wrote:
Once again "uriahh" posts a long and winding comment on a fracking story. Yet has nothing to say about anyother story in the York area.

Company stooge?
Thank you for confirming my prediction! Personal abuse - the last refuge for those losing the debate when all factual evidence for their case is missing or not available! Respond to the facts, if you are able!

1. I haven't worked for any company for over 30 years and have never worked for any Power Generation Manufacturer or Power Company!
2. I have commented on many other issues in York: the Ring Road, the Lendel Railway Bridge and prospective development, the Poppleton R&D and A59 roundabout scheme, other Development Pans etc. etc.
[quote][p][bold]The Great Buda[/bold] wrote: Once again "uriahh" posts a long and winding comment on a fracking story. Yet has nothing to say about anyother story in the York area. Company stooge?[/p][/quote]Thank you for confirming my prediction! Personal abuse - the last refuge for those losing the debate when all factual evidence for their case is missing or not available! Respond to the facts, if you are able! 1. I haven't worked for any company for over 30 years and have never worked for any Power Generation Manufacturer or Power Company! 2. I have commented on many other issues in York: the Ring Road, the Lendel Railway Bridge and prospective development, the Poppleton R&D and A59 roundabout scheme, other Development Pans etc. etc. uriahh
  • Score: 6

12:48pm Fri 9 May 14

Brighouse Lad says...

I'm for fracking if it can be done safely. It seems to me that too many people look to and quote the fracking industry in the USA. Back in the UK the geology is different, regulations are different and things are more transparent in general.

I took the time to read a few unbiased articles and reports into fracking. The greens to me are putting to much spin on this and are simply scaremongering.
I'm for fracking if it can be done safely. It seems to me that too many people look to and quote the fracking industry in the USA. Back in the UK the geology is different, regulations are different and things are more transparent in general. I took the time to read a few unbiased articles and reports into fracking. The greens to me are putting to much spin on this and are simply scaremongering. Brighouse Lad
  • Score: 3

5:19pm Fri 9 May 14

Sillybillies says...

Get on with fracking before the lights start going out.
Get on with fracking before the lights start going out. Sillybillies
  • Score: 3

12:41am Sat 10 May 14

Ingsdreamer says...

Here in Australia fracking has been going on for a little while now, with very bad results in many areas.
Some instances recorded are : tap water becoming flammable; arsenic being leaked into water tables, along with other chemicals which are also harmful to stock and humans; people, particularly children, living in drilling areas becoming very ill (no other differences in habitat); the leaking of gas, observed as bubbles, through nearby rivers; plus the completely unknown and unpredictable effects of fracking in the longer term.
The people using fracking have no idea how this imposition of very strong pressure at long depths underground will impact on the wider surrounds.
There is no known way of identifying whether the ground can withstand this pressure, or if it will create fissures through the different strata.
Earthquakes of no small magnitude have already been created by some of the fracking drills in the USA. A very small extra crack near a drill site can gradually spread for miles, becoming larger all the time. Huge tracts of land may be lost into sinkholes - there is absolutely no way to predict what might happen.
I'd rather use candles than breath in an unknown cocktail of poisonous gases. Ban fracking while you can.
Here in Australia fracking has been going on for a little while now, with very bad results in many areas. Some instances recorded are : tap water becoming flammable; arsenic being leaked into water tables, along with other chemicals which are also harmful to stock and humans; people, particularly children, living in drilling areas becoming very ill (no other differences in habitat); the leaking of gas, observed as bubbles, through nearby rivers; plus the completely unknown and unpredictable effects of fracking in the longer term. The people using fracking have no idea how this imposition of very strong pressure at long depths underground will impact on the wider surrounds. There is no known way of identifying whether the ground can withstand this pressure, or if it will create fissures through the different strata. Earthquakes of no small magnitude have already been created by some of the fracking drills in the USA. A very small extra crack near a drill site can gradually spread for miles, becoming larger all the time. Huge tracts of land may be lost into sinkholes - there is absolutely no way to predict what might happen. I'd rather use candles than breath in an unknown cocktail of poisonous gases. Ban fracking while you can. Ingsdreamer
  • Score: 1

9:05am Sat 10 May 14

uriahh says...

Ingsdreamer wrote:
Here in Australia fracking has been going on for a little while now, with very bad results in many areas.
Some instances recorded are : tap water becoming flammable; arsenic being leaked into water tables, along with other chemicals which are also harmful to stock and humans; people, particularly children, living in drilling areas becoming very ill (no other differences in habitat); the leaking of gas, observed as bubbles, through nearby rivers; plus the completely unknown and unpredictable effects of fracking in the longer term.
The people using fracking have no idea how this imposition of very strong pressure at long depths underground will impact on the wider surrounds.
There is no known way of identifying whether the ground can withstand this pressure, or if it will create fissures through the different strata.
Earthquakes of no small magnitude have already been created by some of the fracking drills in the USA. A very small extra crack near a drill site can gradually spread for miles, becoming larger all the time. Huge tracts of land may be lost into sinkholes - there is absolutely no way to predict what might happen.
I'd rather use candles than breath in an unknown cocktail of poisonous gases. Ban fracking while you can.
This has all the hallmarks of fantasy and anti-fracking black propaganda and misinformation. Please advise the links to published proper evidence of all these supposed serious problems, the extent and size of the events and their sites to enable others to assess such evidence. Failing that, we must simply ignore such alarmist outbursts!
[quote][p][bold]Ingsdreamer[/bold] wrote: Here in Australia fracking has been going on for a little while now, with very bad results in many areas. Some instances recorded are : tap water becoming flammable; arsenic being leaked into water tables, along with other chemicals which are also harmful to stock and humans; people, particularly children, living in drilling areas becoming very ill (no other differences in habitat); the leaking of gas, observed as bubbles, through nearby rivers; plus the completely unknown and unpredictable effects of fracking in the longer term. The people using fracking have no idea how this imposition of very strong pressure at long depths underground will impact on the wider surrounds. There is no known way of identifying whether the ground can withstand this pressure, or if it will create fissures through the different strata. Earthquakes of no small magnitude have already been created by some of the fracking drills in the USA. A very small extra crack near a drill site can gradually spread for miles, becoming larger all the time. Huge tracts of land may be lost into sinkholes - there is absolutely no way to predict what might happen. I'd rather use candles than breath in an unknown cocktail of poisonous gases. Ban fracking while you can.[/p][/quote]This has all the hallmarks of fantasy and anti-fracking black propaganda and misinformation. Please advise the links to published proper evidence of all these supposed serious problems, the extent and size of the events and their sites to enable others to assess such evidence. Failing that, we must simply ignore such alarmist outbursts! uriahh
  • Score: -1

11:20am Sat 10 May 14

Brighouse Lad says...

As regards to flammable water, theres two films in the USA called Gaslands and Badlands I think. Both have proved to be lies. Also in the USA there is a town called Burning Springs in West Virginia. Burning Springs gets its name from 200 years ago as the locals found you could set fire to the water. Its a natural phenomenon caused by in some instances by water being extracted from coal seams OR bacterial decay in the rock that contains water.

Whilst there as been issues with contamination through bad working practises the UK has a chance to learn from this and through proper regulation etc make a success of it.
As regards to flammable water, theres two films in the USA called Gaslands and Badlands I think. Both have proved to be lies. Also in the USA there is a town called Burning Springs in West Virginia. Burning Springs gets its name from 200 years ago as the locals found you could set fire to the water. Its a natural phenomenon caused by in some instances by water being extracted from coal seams OR bacterial decay in the rock that contains water. Whilst there as been issues with contamination through bad working practises the UK has a chance to learn from this and through proper regulation etc make a success of it. Brighouse Lad
  • Score: -1

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