Monday, August 19, 2013

Frack off Cuadrilla and Northdown

At the Balcombe protest


Press release:

Local Green visits Balcombe on day Green Party MP is arrested during peaceful protest.

Earlier today Croydon Green Party leader, Shasha Khan, travelled to Balcombe in West Sussex to show support for residents in their stand against fracking.

Protests have been going on at Balcombe since fracking company Cuadrilla began exploratory drilling for shale oil there four weeks ago.

Fracking poses serious environmental risks, including air and soil pollution, and threatens already overstretched water resources. It makes a mockery of the UK’s efforts to tackle climate change.
And it won’t even help bring energy prices down. It’s not just Greens saying that: everyone from senior executives at Norddeutsche Landesbank, analysts at Bloomberg New Energy Finance and even Cuadrilla’s own PR people say that the development of shale gas resources in the UK is unlikely to lead to a significant reduction in UK natural gas prices.

Although shale oil and gas exploration is at an early stage in the UK, a licence has already been granted in Croydon – so industrial sites could pop up in our borough, bringing a huge increase in heavy goods traffic as drilling materials, water, chemicals, waste and the extracted gas or oil are transported to and from the sites..
These licences are to extract the gas or oil, they don’t specify the method to be used.  In order to frack, the companies would need further specific permits. The Government is currently trying to make the permissions process easier for the companies to get permissions and harder for residents to oppose.

Commenting on his visit, Mr Khan said, “When the first modern incinerators were built in other parts of country, we would never have expected one such facility would receive planning approval on our doorstep. We cannot assume that it will never happen in Croydon given Northdown Energy Limited already has a license to frack here (1).  I am particular concerned about toxic chemicals getting into our drinking water.”

Balcombe will be a test case for the entire South East, so it is important we do all we can to demonstrate our opposition and inform people about the risks of fracking, and the myths being perpetuated by the industry and its apologists in government.

The Greens are the only political party completely against any shale gas exploitation. We need to heed the warnings of other European countries, such as France, who have banned fracking entirely.

Earlier in the day, Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas, was arrested during a peaceful protest.
Commenting on the arrest, Shasha continued, “Croydon Greens back her brave stance against fracking. For once an MP has been arrested for the right reasons.”

Instead of continuing to chase ever more extreme forms of fossil fuel energy, we should be investing in energy conservation and renewable energy, creating an affordable, job-rich, energy-secure future.


Notes (1)


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1 comment:

SMOGBAD said...

Fracking uses so much water:

According to driller Chesapeake Energy, an initial drilling operation itself may consume from 6,000 to 600,000 US gallons of fracking fluids, but over its lifetime an average well may require up to an additional 5 million gallons of water for full operation and possible restimulation frac jobs.

A 2009 report on modern shale gas by the Groundwater Protection Council, "Modern Shale Gas Development in the United States: A Primer," stated that “the amount of water needed to drill and fracture a horizontal shale gas well generally ranges from about 2 million to 4 million gallons, depending on the basin and formation characteristics.”

The extraction of so much water for fracking has raised concerns about the ecological impacts to aquatic resources, as well as dewatering of drinking water aquifers. It has also been estimated that the transportation of a million gallons of water (fresh or waste water) requires hundreds of truck trips, increasing the greenhouse gas footprint of oil and gas and contrbuting to air pollution.

So you can not only expect contaminated water, water shortages over and above the norm, but also more expensive water and sompulsory metering in double quick time.
The exploratory well in Warlingham could possibly drain into the same aquifers that give rise to the old Waddon ponds, and Wandle river, where the alluvial meets the cretaceous

Standing up for what matters