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For earler history Read


Week Ending 27th July 2014

UK news highlights

The main stories -


Councillors refused it on the grounds that the applicant had not demonstrated the site represented the best option compared to other sites, has unsafe highways access and would have an adverse impact on Wisborough Green as a conservation area.

The Telegraph seemed to regard this as a body blow for UK fracking. Who are we to disagree?

A major story broke on Monday morning with publication of a new report on fracking from Scientists for Global Responsibility (SGR) and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH).

The report is an independent assessment which draws heavily on academic research. It highlights:

Major shortcomings in regulatory oversight regarding local environmental and public health risks.
The large potential for UK shale gas exploitation to undermine national and international efforts to tackle climate change.
The water-intensive nature of the fracking process which could cause water shortages in many areas.

Taken overall the report is a surprisingly damning indictment of every claim made by the fracking industry and its supporters, the likely effects of fracking on the environment, health, climate change, water supllies...inadequacy of UK regulation and the duplicity of politicians.

Friends of the Earth Europe produced a report subtitled A Who's Who of the EU Shale Gas Lobby which shows just how deep the oil and gas companies has infiltrated Brussels, peddled lies and misinformation and worked to decrease any regulation of their industry.

For reasons not entirely understood, IGas have dropped seismic testing near Glazebury and Astley. This is turning into a very bad week for the frackers.

Other news

No Dash For Gas announced they will be coming to the Blackpool area for their next Reclaim The Power event, celebrating the stand for social, environmental and economic justice. Dates are set from 14th to 20th August.

IGas went on the propaganda offensive with news of a new report (which they didn't produce) claiming they could sink 300 wells on 30 pads and generate 3500 jobs in Greater Manchester. Readers of this Digest will remember the estimates for 300 wells lifetime output of gas is between 330 billion cubic feet according to the US Geological Survey and one trillion using Cuadrilla's (IoD) estimates. When the country "needs" 3 TRILLION cubic feet PER YEAR, that's an awful lot of damage for a maximum of 4 MONTHS of gas over twenty or thirty years. It is a lot of profit for the gas companies though, demonstrating what a lucrative business this is.

Ex Tory Minister Herbert opposed Celtique's Sussex plans.

Hazard magazine listed the perils to fracking workers.

Action alert in Fermanagh as Tamboran move forward with fracking plans. The announcement they want to frack sparked an anti-fracking protest attracting hundreds at the proposed site near Belcoo. Police plans are in place to assist Tamboran.

Ineos, the operator of the Grangemouth refinery in Scotland has been promised a £230 million loan guarantee from the UK Treasury to import US shale gas.

Police watchdog NetPol announced a new initiative to abolish police bail conditions which have been used excessively and in many eyes unlawfully to quash civil dissent. The message is clear, and one with which few would disagree unless you accept we are living in a police state. Police should not be allowed to impose restrictive bail conditions and delay charging, using the combination as a political tool. If they believe they have a case they should charge and bring before a court.

On the day West Sussex County Council was to deliberate the Wisborough Green Celtique application the council was accused of pro-fracking bias.

BUT the brilliant news was that the council meeting UNANIMOUSLY voted to REFUSE the application. This doesn't guarantee Celtique won't be back to try again, but it is a milestone in the battle against fracking. The focus is now on Lancashire for the next victory. A brave Fylde Borough Councillor moves a motion to impose a moratorium on fracking.

Elsewhere A report claims Halliburton delayed releasing details on fracking chemicals for days after a spill which killed over 70,000 fish and polluted a water-supply river.

South African activists called for a moratorium on fracking to be reimposed.

Any opinions here not quotes from the week's news reports are my own.
Alan Tootill

News As It Came In with links to original stories

3,500 jobs and £10bn boost if north west embraces fracking

Fracking: Tory ex-minister Nick Herbert opposes drilling in West Sussex village

Shale gas and ‘fracking’: examining the evidence

Fracking firm hit by double legal block

Halliburton delayed releasing details on fracking chemicals after Monroe County spill

Geologist to provide testimony against fracking company

Chemicals, dust and deaths and the new rush for oil and gas



Hundreds attend County Fermanagh anti-fracking protest

Fracking Brussels: A who's who of the EU shale gas lobby

Netpol calls for abolition of police bail conditions for protest arrests

Zuma must halt fracking in Karoo: AfriForum

Council accused of pro-fracking stance at Pulborough drop in

West Sussex County Council's planning committee reject plan from Celtique Energie to drill at Wisborough Green for oil and shale gas

Fracking: blow for hopes of UK shale energy boom as council throws out drilling plans

Massive victory! West Sussex says we're 'not for shale'

Appeal for fracking to be put on hold

Fracking tests in Glazebury and Astley cancelled

Police 'prepared for Fermanagh fracking protests'

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