The public are increasingly less supportive of fracking

Is the tide of public opinion turning against fracking?

Jonny Bairstow 08.02.2019

https://www.energylivenews.com/2019/02/08/is-the-tide-of-public-opinion-turning-against-fracking/

The latest BEIS Public Attitude Tracker, which is now on its 28th wave, would seem to suggest so…

The public are becoming increasingly less supportive of fracking.

That’s according to the latest BEIS Public Attitude Tracker, which is now on its 26th wave of finding out what the UK public think about a variety of energy issues.

In the survey, 13% of Brits said they supported fracking, a decrease from 15% in September 2018.

Similarly, 35% told the government they oppose fracking, an increase from 31% – this follows on from a general downward trend in support of the controversial method of sourcing shale gas since the question was first asked in December 2013.

The most common reason given for opposing the practice was the loss or destruction of the natural environment, with 62% of people stating this is the reason they were against it.

Around 40% said they were concerned it increased the risk of earthquakes, up from 26% in the last round of the tracker.

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Ineos are starting to realise that fracking is unworkable in the UK

MP Lee Rowley has criticised a company which wants to carry out fracking in north Derbyshire for complaining about ‘unworkable’ current planning policies.

Industry giant Ineos has been granted planning permission to explore for shale gas reserves in Marsh Lane, near Eckington. If successful, it could eventually lead to fracking at the site.

MP for north east Derbyshire, Lee Rowley, has supported residents of Marsh Lane and Eckington in their campaign against the plans.

“It’s a step in the right direction that even Ineos are starting to realise that fracking is unworkable in the UK,” Mr Rowley said. “I’ve long said that it won’t work in north east Derbyshire and, given the sheer scale of the number of wells that would be required, I don’t think it will work across the country as a whole.

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Geological Concerns Regarding Fracking Regulation

The UK system of regulation of fracking imposes a range of strict geological controls on operators – including seismic surveys, safe distances, seismic monitoring, a traffic light system, and barriers to fugitive migration. Experience and professional advice suggest however that each of these controls is
flawed e.g.

1. Seismic surveys are invariably incomplete and incapable of detecting small fault lines and minor vertical displacement which could lead to earthquakes.

2. The EA formula for calculating a safe distance between fracking propagation and fault lines is unduly optimistic and should be replaced by a minimum distance of at least 850 metres horizontally.

3. The sequence of events at both the Preese Hall and PNR sites implies inherent instability in the stress planes of the fault lines in the Bowland Field.

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Theresa May – The Clean Growth Strategy???

‘This Government is determined to leave our natural environment in a better condition than we found it. Clean growth is not an option, but a duty we owe to the next generation, and economic growth has to go hand-in-hand with greater protection for our forests and beaches, clean air and places of outstanding natural beauty.’
Theresa May
The Clean Growth Strategy
Leading the way to a low carbon future.

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The UK would have to build 6,100 wells

The UK would have to build 6,100 wells to replace just 50 per cent of gas imports between 2021 and 2035, a new study has found, casting doubt on Conservative calls for a US-style fracking “revolution” in the UK at the last general election.

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Increased Levels of Radon Correspond to Onset of Fracking

Increased Levels of Radon in Pennsylvania Homes Correspond to Onset of Fracking
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

“One plausible explanation for elevated radon levels in people’s homes is the development of thousands of unconventional natural gas wells in Pennsylvania over the past 10 years,” says study leader Brian S. Schwartz, MD, a professor in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Bloomberg School.

“These findings worry us.” The disruptive process that brings gas to the surface can also bring
heavy metals and organic and radioactive materials such as radium-226, which decays into radon. Most indoor radon exposure has been linked to the diffusion of gas from soil. It is also found in well water, natural gas and ambient air

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Holland has put a stop to fracking

For Groningen, the impact of induced earthquakes is a location specific external force. All in all, for a number of residents the large scale gas extraction in Groningen has gradually eroded – and sometimes shockwise shattered – their housing-related wellbeing. In the worst cases, they have to leave their home for safety reasons. Others feel trapped in their once cherished properties that no one wants to take the risk of buying.

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Fracking – An alarming prospect for communities

Zac Goldsmith has warned ministers that their plans to fast-track fracking risk turning whole regions of the country against the Conservatives and igniting a political backlash.

The Tory MP for Richmond said people had legitimate concerns about fracking and that government proposals to bypass local planning decisions on shale gas wells were a mistake.

“Fracking is an issue that has the potential to turn whole regions against the government,” he told the Guardian. “The drilling rigs and pollution, the industrial equipment and sheer volume of trucks all make it an alarming prospect for communities up and down the country.”

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