Opposition

Anti-fracking campaigner walks from Blackpool for Downing Street to “bribe” Prime Minister

Gayzer Frackman PNR

Gayzer Frackman outside Cuadrilla’s proposed fracking site at Preston New Road near Blackpool this morning

A Lancashire opponent of shale gas exploration set off this morning on a 230 mile walk to London, in his words, to “openly bribe” Theresa May not to frack his home.

Gayzer Frackman, from Lytham, plans to deliver a cheque for £10,000 to 10 Downing Street at the end his 15-day walk.

He said the “payment” was inspired by the Prime Minister’s proposal to give money from the shale gas fund to people living in fracking areas. Many news reports said the payments could be £10,000. Opponents of fracking described the payments as bribery.

Mr Frackman, who changed his name by deed poll, said his cheque was “openly bribing” Theresa May not to frack his home, Blackpool and Lancashire.

“After the announcement last month that the new PM was offering £10.000, to be paid directly into people’s accounts if they allowed fracking in their communities, I thought it would be rude not to offer the same opportunity.

“It seems the expert evidence and science is not enough to expose the many flaws in the fracking processes.

“Add to this the testimonies of communities and countries who have been blighted by this industrial process, then it may be a good idea to take the Conservatives lead and outright bribe them not to do it.”

Mr Frackman said opponents of fracking in Lancashire had “tried every other legal means” to stop shale gas development in the county.

Cuadrilla’s proposals to frack up to four wells each at Roseacre Wood and Preston New Road were turned down by Lancashire County Council in June 2015. The outcome of a six-week public inquiry on the applications will be decided by the Communities and Local Government Secretary, Sajid Javid. An announcement is expected by Thursday 6 October.

Mr Frackman said:

“We need to ask why Theresa May – knowing that we do not want it and will not allow it – is proceeding with the commitment of her predecessor, knowing he had failed to convince the UK”.

His walk began at about 8am this morning from Blackpool Football Club, the scene of the public inquiry. From there, Mr Frackman was due to walk to Blackburn.

He is expected to arrive in London on Monday 19 September and will deliver the cheque in a brown envelope at noon. Later that day, he said he would announce a legal challenge to fracking on the grounds of human rights and climate change.

Walk itinerary

4 September: Blackburn
5 September: Burnley and Hebdon Bridge
6 September: Halifax
7 September: Barnsley
8 September: Doncaster
9 September: Gainsborough
10 September: Lincoln
11 September: Nottingham
12 September: Leicester
13 September: Corby
14 September: Northampton
15 September: Leighton Buzzard
16 September: St Albans
17 September: Edgware
18 September: central London
19 September: Downing Street

And a cheque for an MP

Kevin Hollinrake cheque and health

Kevin Hollinrake MP (pictured right) receives cheque and details of research on health impacts of fracking

Opponents of fracking in Ryedale in North Yorkshire presented a “cheque” for £10,000 to their local MP Kevin Hollinrake yesterday outside his meeting with constituents in Malton.

Kevin Hollinrake cheque.jpg

The campaigners also gave him a copy of recently published research by the Public Health Department  at John Hopkins University. It found an association between people living near fracking in Pennsylvania and migraines, severe fatigue and sinus symptoms.

Dr Liz Garthwaite, Malton resident and medical doctor, said:

“I do not accept this fracking bribe. The health evidence in the latest health paper, such as migraines, severe fatigue, chronic nasal and sinus problems, are not trivial symptoms, but have a debilitating effect on people’s lives. They cause a huge amount of lost days at work. This is a serious piece of research that residents and government alike would be very unwise to ignore.”

14 replies »

    • Our money comes from the tens of thousands of people who know that shale gas is not needed, is dangerous , and has no competitive edge over conventional sources and is therefore not economically viable.

      We write out many cheques for thousands of pounds. If you have been following you will have noticed we employ the best environmental consultants, the best legal teams and the best specialists. They work for us and are happy to do so.

      We have the numbers and we have the resources.

      We have gone from strength to strength whilst support for the industry constantly falls.

      The drilling companies now look very small against the might of the people and the Government’s applied inevitability that the industry will develop has completely backfired. The more they push the more resilient we become. New groups form and resources swell.

      Whether handing out flyers, walking to raise awareness or sitting down with our legal teams, together we are a force which cannot be stopped and grows increasingly stronger.

  1. +TW How very pathetic insulting and boringly typical of the pro fracking trolls who cant abide a positive challenge to their pernicious agenda. Where do you get your funding from? Do you declare all your tax? and do you use off shore tax havens to run your business? Perhaps you should answer those points before making such pathetic insinuations.
    oh yes, how is the pro fracking hippie commune these days?

  2. Hi Ruth,I work for the anti-fracking group Lock the Gate in Australia as the coordinator of the south west region of Western Australia. We have a company here CalEnergy that is trying to drill for tight gas in the Whicher Range east of Margaret River. The area has previously been test fracked including one failed attempt that saw the then company use diesel as the fracking fluid in 20054. More than 500,000 litres of diesel is still down the fracked well and can’t be recovered.CalEnergy now wants to go back and get the tight gas out but says it won’t be fracking because the gas can’t be extracted this way. They claim the footprint of the project will be very like the Saltfleetby Gasfield. The following is a quote from CalEnergy’s brochure on the Whicher Range project: “Natural gas production facilities for projects such asWhicher Range are small. The UK’s onshore SaltfleetbyGas Field located in rural Lincolnshire is very similar tothe type of facility that would likely be set up at WhicherRange. Saltfleetby’s gas facilities occupy a footprint of < 0.3km2with the total cleared area including the initial drillingsite being approximately 0.8km2. This scale would besimilar to a CalEnergy facility at Whicher Range thatwould include production, processing and export to endusers." Just wondering if you had an intel on that project and any images, especially ariel that might help in our campaign here. I have attached a pdf of the company's brochure to give you a fell of what we are up against with this project. RegardsJane Jane HammondSouth West Coordinator Lock the Gate Alliance  Jane Hammond, freelance journalist & filmmaker Fremantle Freelance mob: +61 (0)40 392 6467 http://fremantlefreelance.com.aut:@hearyanow

      

  3. thanks to the man doing something to raise awareness of the planned ‘ecocide for profit’ that is fracking and CBM- anyone opposed to this is either ignorant of the facts or being contentious to wind people up. This industry so obviously wrong and dangerous(see the destruction in US and Australia) that doing it on any kind of scale on our small island is lunatic, anyone investing in this is going to lose against huge public objection.

    • What is this ecocide, 2,000, 000 wells have been fracked worldwide and some in the UK too and nothing untoward has happened to the planet. So where is your proof that this industry is dangerous, where is this large scale destruction of American, Australia. I would have imagined that the press would be telling us about it. The best expectation of a frack site is 40 year and then it is returned to nature, and a few years after that you would not know it had been a fracking site if nobody told you. And how is profit a sin ? The clothes you wear the house you live in, the electricity you use, the car you drive, the train or bus you use, the food you eat, it is all derived from somebody making a profit . So if you are worried about profits then burn your cloths go and live in woods and eat snails or bugs. Regrettably we have to pay income tax, so that too is derived from profits, unfortunately before long you would either be ill, or starving, and we the people who pay our taxes would have to fund the NHS and social services for your care

  4. Fracking with diesel is gross negligence and almost certainly illegal, this is what we can expect when the fracking feeding frenzy starts for earnest in UK, and the ‘ecocide for profit’ trolls cannot stop the fracking rot.

    • If they wanted to frack here with diesel I’m sure they’d be allowed to. After all, George Osborne said, ” Give Cuadrilla their ‘asks’ in order to accommodate the nascent fracking industry. The Gold Standard Regulations are going rustier by the day.

  5. Yes, more like Cheap Painted Plastic Standard Regulations, i wonder where they will dump all those micro plastic beads and French and Chinese nuclear waste we are storing up on UK land? Its becoming more and more obvious we have always been, and always will be lied to right down the line.

  6. Don’t worry yourselves to death… Diesel will not be used as a frack fluid onshore in the UK. At one time you could drill with diesel based drilling fluid. This was stopped (quite rightly) in the early ’80s or late ’70s I think. Some companies used Low Toxicity Oil Based Mud (and later Synthetic Oil Based Mud) in the mid ’80’s to drill extended reach wells. This included wells around Stockbridge in Hampshire. From a drilling standpoint these wells were technically successful in that targets were reached on time in budget and wells were logged. Commercially they were never the big producers expected although I understand some wells are still on production. The issue was what to do with the waste drilling fluids and cuttings. The drilling fluid was recycled, the cuttings were dried and then mixed with waste fly ash from a local power station. The resulting material was used by local farmers FOC to metal tracks – the material made an excellent surface when dried and was not impacted by rain. I expect these tracks are still in use today.

    Apart from anything else think aout the cost of a BBL of Diesel vs a BBL of water? There are complex issues with using diesel other than the obvious toxicity issues including explosion risk (with any air in the system).

    Diesel will not be used as the HVHP frack carrier fluid or as a drilling fluid onshore UK so you need to find something else to worry about.

    • It is sad when you look back at the lack of standards in the past in the UK, sadly still being used in other countries. I hope we don’t regress.

      What is FOC to metal tracks, please?

      • FOC = Free of charge. Metal = surface. I recall that the main reason diesel was excluded in drilling operations was health issues for workers exposed to it. In those days there were more volatiles, including benzene, in diesel which were the main cause of the health issues. It is made worse because it is heated up by the geological thermal gradient as it is circulated during the drilling operations and the well is drilled deeper. Standards evolve with time as experience is gained and new things are learnt with experience and R & D. Diesel / oil based fluids were introduced offshore when deviated welIs were required. The existing water based fluids were no good drilling shales and claystones at high angles due to reaction of shales with the water in the drilling fluids. Now new water based and synthetic drilling fluids have been developed which overcome these problems and oil based fluids are generally not necessary any more. It wasn’t that long ago that Tobacco was thought to be okay. Look at the state of our health in the UK today – obesity, diabetes, out of control. We now understand the problems and causes but it is getting too late for the current generation. All lines of business are continually evolving standards. The UK’s oil and gas standards have been ahead of nearly every other country, the exception was Norway. However we may actually be ahead of Norway now due to recent EU intervention.

    • Fine to say that, but without on site presence and regulations, what is to stop any well from being fracked, not just with diesel, but with any illegal chemical? When cost is at a premium, once it all gets going, there is nothing to stop any of them from doing what they want. No enforceable regulations, no on site monitoring, no powers to close a drill site, no laws to enforce it. The Fracking operators will have a field day just as they have done all over the world. And they can always say, Oh sorry, that was a mistake. its too late then, the damage is done and there is no way of undoing it. There are no gold standard regulations, as far as i can see, there are no enforceable regulations at all, no limits on emissions, no control over traffic of propellants and waste, spillage and accidents, no obligation to inform the public or admit there has been an accident, unless it is six months later, just hide behind the police cordons and government protection. The police are looking in the wrong direction.

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