Posted by: westlancashirerecord | February 28, 2019

Labour Seismic Reaction To Fracking Vote Abstentions

Do you remember “Gasland”?

the 2010 Sundance award winning documentary on the dangers of hydraulic fracturing, fracking, in natural gas extraction, particularly on the effects of clean, safe drinking water? It could be making a comeback if local political clashes raise the temperature between our West Lancashire councillors.

There was a fracking Motion

Included on the WLBC Agenda by Councillor I Moran, on Behalf of the Labour Group.”This Council resolves that “While being totally opposed to shale gas extraction (Fracking) and the damage it threatens to our health, safety, environment and countryside, the Leader and Chief Executive write to the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Minister of State for Energy and Clean Growth, asking them to reaffirm their position that there will be no weakening of the existing traffic light system, as proposed by Cuadrilla, to allow fracking to continue where it causes seismic activity in excess of 0.5 magnitude”.

It’s well known that there is public concern following 57 seismic events during fracking at Preston New Road in the latter part of 2018 and is at the crucial moment for the future of fracking in England. The motion was passed at Full Council last night. Labour voted unanimously for the motion. The Tories abstained and, according to Councillor Ashcroft (in Councillor David Westley’s absence), they were abstaining as they are following the government (myths?) on the national need for fracking. Ashcroft stated they believe we will need our own fracked gas for cooking and heating going forward and to counter imports from the EU and Russia! This notwithstanding the BEIS statement last year, that “Claims we rely on gas from Russia are false. Almost half of our gas comes from Great Britain, with Norway and Qatar being our major international suppliers”

The OWLs also, surprisingly given their stance on fracking, abstained.

Their leader Adrian Owens is reported to have stated “that the government had said a decisive “No”, but Labour Cllr Mills countered that by quoting the WMS by Ed Davey that Cuadrilla (and the industry) are relying upon to increase the 0.5 limit in their “presentation”.

Labour claims “This lack of support for the motion will be very disappointing for residents of West Lancashire facing the threat of fracking from both Cuadrilla (PEDL 165) and Aurora (PEDL 164).

“These PEDLs slice Halsall in two! We know from local farmers that Cuadrilla are hunting around for sites in Ribble Valley and West Lancashire for test boreholes and Aurora have categorically stated they will be submitting an application to explore and frack at Altcar Moss”.

There must be more mileage in this subject for the upcoming local elections?


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