I am afraid that as a result of the passage of this Bill, our exposure to the industry of Unconventional Gas has just become much greater. It demonstrates this Government’s determination to frack at any cost.
The definition of fracking has been now redefined in such a way as to allow for high volume high pressure fracturing of shale anywhere so long as less than 2.2 million gallons of fluid is used. This means that most operations are no longer covered by the already watered down regulations.
That risks allowing significant fracking with less than the defined volume limit to go ahead, without even the safeguards that are before us today. What a mockery this is making of legitimate public concerns on fracking, and indeed of the democratic process.
Also announced in the final debate was the plan to allow monitoring bore holes& pilot extractions without the need for planning permission, thus taking away from local planning authorities& local people any say in these developments.
The conditions no longer specifically ban fracking in groundwater source protection zones or ban fracking underneath, as well as in, National Parks and protected areas.
Environmental Impact Assessments are no longer required for fracking.
Just how fracked is our democracy? No Kent MP’s voted against these measures….Time for them to go ?
Locally the present situation is that Coastal Oil & Gas say that they have” surrendered Guston, Shepherdswell and Woodnesborough but have retained the Tilmanstone area”. They also mentioned that they were interested in the Snowdon & Betteshangar areas. The fact that they have given up these other sites does not mean that they will not be passed onto other companies. Sadly there is little to cheer about yet..