Politics

Labour government will ban fracking in the UK + reaction

barry-gardiner-labour-conference

The shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary confirmed this morning that the next Labour government would ban fracking.

Barry Gardiner told delegates at the Labour conference in Liverpool:

“Today I am announcing that a future Labour Government will ban fracking”

He said:

“There are technical problems with fracking. And they give rise to real environmental dangers.

“But technical problems can be overcome. So on their own they’re not a good enough reason to ban fracking.

“The real reason to ban fracking is that it locks us into an energy infrastructure that is based on fossil fuels long after our country needs to have moved to clean energy.”

The new policy goes beyond Labour’s previous support for a moratorium on fracking until environmental conditions were met. It comes just days before a government announcement is expected on whether Cuadrilla should be allowed to frack at two sites in Lancashire.

Mr Gardiner said this morning that a future Labour government would concentrate on developing a low-carbon energy industry.

“We will consult with our colleagues in industry and the Trade Unions about the best way to transition our energy industry to create the vital jobs and apprenticeships we are going to need for the UK’s low-­‐carbon future.”

  • See the end of this post for an extract of Mr Gardiner’s speech dealing with fracking

Reaction

caroline-flint-labour-conferenceCaroline Flint, former Shadow Energy Secretary

“80% of our heating is derived from gas. We have been a net importer of gas for decades now. If you’re going to say ban an energy source you have got to fill it with something else and we can’t just be against things, we have to explain what our policy is and what we stand for when it comes to energy. How do we replenish the gas we’ve got, which we’re importing, which leaves us hostage to volatile gas markets around the world and the costs being put up. We have to have policies that make common sense and address the issues of energy security and keeping the lights on and keeping our houses warm.” Source: Sky News

CarolineLucasCaroline Lucas, co-leader of the Green Party

“Labour’s commitment to a fracking ban is extremely welcome. Not only does fracking pose risks to local communities, but drilling for gas under our countryside risks undermining our climate change commitments too.” Source: The Guardian

Hannah Martin, energy campaigner at Greenpeace UK

“With opposition to fracking an all-time high across the country, this ban on an unproven and inexperienced industry will be widely welcomed.”

jesse-norman-mpJesse Norman, Minister for Industry and Energy

“As Labour themselves have said, the safe development of shale can create jobs and improve our energy security – that’s why the Government supports shale and will ensure local residents benefit from the proceeds.

‘Labour are totally divided over how to provide the energy our country needs, and even Labour-supporting unions say their plans ‘will not keep the lights on.’

‘Labour are not a credible alternative government and they have nothing to offer as we work to build a country that works for everyone.’ Source: The Mail

Gary Smith, GMB Scotland secretary

“Britain needs gas. The first fracked gas from America arrives tomorrow at Grangemouth.Carting gas across oceans is not good from the environment and not good for security of supply in the UK.

“Given we will need gas to heat our homes and power industry, the question is therefore where are we going to get our gas from.

“We are increasingly going to be dependent on regimes fronted by henchmen, hangmen and head-choppers for the gas we need.

“That isn’t ethical and is surely an abdication of our environmental and moral responsibilities.” Source: Politics Home

FrancisEganFrancis Egan, Chief Executive Officer, Cuadrilla

“We are disappointed that Labour has reversed the positive view of shale gas it has held to date, without a proper Party debate.  This runs contrary to the views of many of Unions and Labour MPs who understand that it will play a vital role in ensuring Britain’s energy security for 80% of UK homes that rely on gas for heating and cooking and create much needed jobs and investment in Lancashire and across the UK.”

Frack Free South Yorkshire

“Frack Free South Yorkshire welcomes The Labour Party pledge to ban fracking.  The United Kingdom already uses less gas year on year thanks to increased insulation, energy efficiency and renewable energy. This downward trend can be accelerated by using more safe, non-polluting renewable energy to reduce our dependency on imported gas, keep our energy bills down, keep the lights on, and create hundreds of thousands of long-term sustainable jobs.  The world has to reduce its use of fossil fuels and the Labour Party pledge is another important step forwards.”

BalcombeNo Fracking in Balcombe Society

We are delighted that Labour has finally gone ‘Full Monty’ and opposed fracking. Barry Gardiner is right in saying that fracked gas is unacceptable in terms of climate change.

There is so much that he had no time to mention. Useful volumes of fracked gas would require wells ‘back to back’ across large swathes of the Bristish Isles – a sacrifice the Tory government seems keen to pursue. It would create vast quantities of waste, and no one has a viable plan for its treatment or disposal.

There are technical problems that cannot be resolved, such as the toxic pollution from flares, underground migration of liquids and gases, and the inevitable ultimate crumbling and corrosion and leaking of wells. And ‘side issues’, such as accidents and spills, and the terrible waste of that rare kind of sand.

We hope the GMB is studying the effects of fracking on workers’ health in America, Australia and elsewhere. And we hope that one day soon Labour will also come out over the sister issues of acidisation, coal bed methane and underground coal gasification. In the meantime three cheers for Labour (and the Lib Dems and of course the Greens) for facing the facts and supporting the majority of the British public who oppose fracking!

Frack Free Ryedale

Peter Allen, Frack Free Ryedale

“We are pleased to see that mainstream political opinion is now aligning itself with the views of the Great British public, who are overwhelmingly opposed to fracking. The Labour Party now joins the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party in calling for a ban on this unwanted, unnecessary and unsafe industry, and pro-fracking councillors will now be wondering if they can hang on to their seats in next year’s council elections, particularly in areas threatened by fracking.”

Ken Cronin, Chief Executive of the industry body UK Onshore Oil and Gas

“We import over 50 percent of our gas usage today and that is set to rise to 80 percent, while at the same time 84 percent of our homes use gas for heating, 61 percent for cooking, up to 50 percent of our electricity comes from gas and a large number of everyday products use gas as an integral feedstock.

“Imports of gas as LNG [liquefied natural gas] are 15-percent more carbon intensive than locally-produced shale gas. If we want to maintain the right of the general public to access heat and power securely, manage climate change and create UK-based jobs, then we need to develop renewables, nuclear and natural gas from shale. To go for a narrow one size fits all approach will lead to more imports and a detrimental impact on the environment and economy.” Source: Rigzone

Extract from Barry Gardiner’s speech

“Last year they [the government] cut support for solar and their own figures show deployment has fallen by 93 per cent, losing 12,000 jobs..

They’ve walked away from onshore wind, attacked biomass tariffs without consultation and scrapped two world leading carbon capture and storage projects at the last minute

In fairness; not everything has been cut. Before he was sacked, George Osborne managed to pass what he proudly referred to as “the most generous tax regime for Shale gas anywhere in the world”.

Well that will change under Labour.

You see, there are technical problems with fracking. And they give rise to real environmental dangers.

But technical problems can be overcome. So on their own they’re not a good enough reason to ban fracking.

The real reason to ban fracking is that it locks us into an energy infrastructure that is based on fossil fuels long after our country needs to have moved to clean energy.

So today I am announcing that a future Labour Government will ban fracking.

And we will consult with our colleagues in industry and the Trade Unions about the best way to transition our energy industry to create the vital jobs and apprenticeships we are going to need for the UK’s low-­‐carbon future.

Energy is the cornerstone of our industry, our economy and our daily lives.

Clean energy and low carbon technologies now employ more people in the UK than the entire teaching profession.

They represent just six per cent of our economy but are responsible for 30 per cent of its growth.

We must unlock the full potential of this sector. It means skilled jobs, it means growth, it means clean air and a healthy secure future for our children.

Britain is at the beginning of an incredible transformation of our energy system. The next Labour Government will launch a new programme called Repowering Britain that puts you in control.

It will build on the innovation and leadership of 70 Labour Councils who have already committed to run their towns on 100 per cent clean energy by 2050.

We need to localise the way energy is produced and stored. I want people earning from the energy they produce on their rooftop solar or their community wind turbines, not just consuming what the Big Six sell.

We need to create smart networks and local grids to make energy work to pay people rather than people working to pay their energy bills.

How can it be right that when the government found out that we were being overcharged by £1.4bn a year on our energy bills they said “It’s all the customers fault – we should shop around more!”

Well we do. We need to shop around for a new government.

Updated 27/9/2016 with reaction from Ken Cronin, UK Onshore Oil and Gas

42 replies »

    • This is fantastic news for the O&G industry. Labour will only lose more relevance by proposing pixie dust policies which many of its members oppose. Corbyn has already answered the question of how to fill the energy hole – he will mine more coal. A very sensible strategy – ahem. LOL What a bunch of nutbags!

    • After listening to the evidence presented by both sides at the Roseacre and Preston New Rd Committee meetings why do you suppose there were 4 Conservative Development Control Committee Members who voted to refuse the applications?

      This was against their partie’s policy of promoting shale.They must have heard some damming evidence unchallenged by the best shale gas representatives during the 30 minute pre determination presentations and on the decision day.

      If the small minority of fracking supporters are against the views of the labour party on shale they presumably have no respect for the decisions made by Conservative committee members. You are clearly as confused on political issues as you are on understanding how renewable s work and the realities of climate change. It is not surprising the pro fracking supporters are frustrated with nothing to show in six years and that it is partly due to the decisions made by Conservative members.

      Confusing times for the UK’s dwindling number of shale supporters.

    • “It is a nonsense that any political party serious on forming a government after the next planned general election in 2020 could promote a ban on shale gas extraction outright. With our national dependency on gas consumption set to increase in the immediate future, ruling out the possible use of a natural fuel that exists beneath our feet in parts of the UK is ridiculous

  1. Banning fracking and moving to cleaner energy sources would help combat climate change and be the best solution for energy security. Rapid deployment of renewable energy developments and energy saving projects will mean our home grown North sea reserves of 20 billion barrels will last longer and our energy imports will decline. Renewable energy costs are reducing fast meaning long term cost reductions for the consumer from energy generated from a free source.The UK has a proven need to move to renewable s as quickly as possible.

    • I agree John.

      This is good news. I think the strength of the Labour Party is building; I believe it now has the biggest membership in Europe. Will this mean that any further decisions on fracking will be opposed by Labour Councillors?

    • John, did you not read the speech, “The real reason to ban fracking is that it locks us into an energy infrastructure that is based on fossil fuels long after our country needs to have moved to clean energy.” . North Sea gas is natural gas, a fossil fuel, and so this policy is attacking North Sea exploration, just not quite so overtly as shale gas. He, a member of the Labour Party, wants to put you and your mates out of work, let’s not forget that. Thank heavens for Caroline Flint’s common sense intervention although I suspect no-one’s listening.

      • The 29th offshore licencing round is looking good.Over 1200 licences up for grabs and loads of interest since the Conservatives £20 million pound surveys of areas in the North sea the size of Britain. 20 billion barrels plus left to go at. 20 billion barrels of proven reserves and all the infrastructure and workforce to extract it. That is serious home grown energy security.

        https://www.gov.uk/government/news/oga-awards-contracts-for-second-20m-uk-seismic-campaign

        $10 a barrel and plenty to go at

        https://www.energyvoice.com/oilandgas/north-sea/111413/beryl-40-trim-fit-future/

        With shale being stated at $60 a barrel no wonder it could never be considered as economically viable.

        Very relevant articles showing the size of the proven reserves, the interest in the new surveys, and the low prices of North sea production costs.

        • John – thanks for the links. Good to see our Government investing £20million of our money in something useful for a change, the seismic spec survey. I expect most people on this BB will not be happy with this investment of tax payers money in fossil fuel exploration. Or perhaps they will be as it is offshore?

          Beryl is 40 years old – have you ever been out there? I have, a long time ago (A). Great to see it is still producing. I could not get into the energy voice article but I assume this is where the $10/bbl costs come from? Is this operating costs or does it include finding costs and CAPEX? Yesterday’s BBC article notes $15/bbl – for existing production.

          The best indicator of where the North Sea is going is the exploration rig count. According to the report linked below the exploration forecast for UK North Sea in 2016 is between 7 – 10 wells only. In 2015 only 13 exploration wells were drilled. Not very encouraging as rig costs are very low at present. Cairn are rumoured to be contracting a 7th generation drillship for less than $200,000 / day. A couple of years ago you could not get one of these for less than $600,000 / day – and you had to wait.

          http://oilandgasuk.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Oil-Gas-UK-Activity-Survey-2016.pdf

          The summary of findings in the linked document notes that OPEX costs of existing fields in 2016 will be around $17 / bbl. However nearly half of the existing fields (which contain the infrastructure for most of the more recent production) will lose money this year.

          The North Sea is focusing on decomissioning the old mature fields. This is where the most expenditure is to made in the next 10 years and will keep some jobs going. But it is not going to increase production.

          • Thanks for the link. I think it is important to look at what is being said in it regarding the potential and the ways to achieve that potential

            ‘ We have a huge task ahead of us but the prize is worth fighting for. The UK still holds up to 20 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) which can continue to provide a secure supply of energy for the country, support hundreds of thousands of jobs, generate several billion pounds in corporate and payroll taxes from the supply chain and stimulate countless technological innovations.’

            In order to do this the report states

            ‘However it is absolutely crucial that in support of the basin in the immediate and as well as the longer term, the tax regime be adjusted as follows. A significant permanent reduction in headline tax rates for old and new assets alike across the UKCS is required, a move which would be consistent with HM treasury’s ‘ Driving investment plan’ for a fiscal reform and would send a signal to investors that this government has confidence in the long term future of this industry in the UK.’

            There is no shale gas industry in the UK. There is no infrastructure. There is no workforce. There is no certainty of supply. The costs have been stated as high. There are provable environmental concerns. It would need many developments in Green Belt near peoples homes.

            Or the Government could pick up the phone and alter the tax system.

            I have no doubt about your technical abilities Paul but surely you see the sense in maximising one of the UK’s largest assets rather than attempt a new industry surrounded by uncertainties. There is no need to do it ‘as well as’. We have 20 billion barrels plus our contracted secure imports. Is that not enough when we are starting to use less and climate change targets will see more renewable s in place meaning what we have would last longer?

  2. So, fracking becomes a political issue. At least this will create a political forum, and that cant be a bad thing. I’m sure this will cause more Corbin bashing by the tory owned media. Will it have any effect on the short term outcome? I don’t think so, but it might draw the attention of the “don’t knows”?

  3. Interesting to read that Mr Egan said he is “disappointed that Labour has reversed the positive view of shale gas it has held to date, without a proper Party debate”.
    We are equally disappointed that Mr Egan won’t engage in public debate with the anti fracking movement. Heigh ho.
    What Egan doesn’t understand is the overwhelming opposition to fracking amongst the Labour Party rank and file.

  4. In 2008 LABOUR issued 1st PEDL LICENCES in UK for Fracking !! As Labour have as much chance being in Gov. as i have of being the PM,they will not have a chance to ban it!!! Thankfully

  5. I see that Gary Smith, GMB Scotland Secretary, says that “We are increasingly going to be dependent on regimes fronted by henchmen, hangmen and head-choppers for the gas we need.” He has obviously met the people in charge of INEOS, Cuadrilla and Third Energy, then …

    • Ellie, very funny but in some of the countries Gary Smith was referring to, you wouldn’t be allowed to drive or work without a male relative’s consent. Do we want part of our gas bill to be going to those regimes. Think about it.

      • We have 20 billion barrels of home grown North sea gas left. Enough for decades. Do you want your gas bill to be going to your own North Sea industry. Think about it.

        • I am so glad we have people like you who can present such articulate arguements . I get so upset and angry it makes me appear insane .

  6. Also, Caroline Flint is being very economical with the truth. The announcement does not ‘ban an energy source’ – ie gas – it simply bans fracking as a way of producing this particular energy source. Everyone accepts that some gas will be needed while we transition to a low-carbon green energy economy, but there are adequate supplies of conventional gas available while we tackle the wider issue of reducing our use of fossil fuels and building the infrastructure for a renewable energy system. And with all this talk of ‘energy security’ and ‘keeping the lights on’, nobody ever mentions that we currently EXPORT over 30% of our natural gas production. Perhaps if people are worried about energy security, this might be something they should be concerned about?

    • Ellie, our exporting of natural gas is not as simple as people think. In 2015 we imported 500 Terawatthours equivalent, we exported 160 Terawatthours and we used around 800 Terawatthours. All this really means is that we exported or re-exported gas volumes equivalent to 32% of our imports – this is not necessarily UK production and may be just re-exported gas we have imported.

      There are currently four gas interconnector pipelines, which run from the European continent to the British mainland:

      The UK-Belgium interconnector (IUK): This pipeline runs between Bacton in Norfolk and Zeebrugge in Belgium, and connects Britain to the mainland Europe gas network. This pipeline has an import capacity of 25.5 billion cubic metres (bcm) a year. It is the only pipeline that is bi-directional, meaning it can both import gas to Britain as well as export gas to mainland Europe. The direction of flow depends on supply and demand and relative prices.
      The UK – Netherlands pipeline (BBL): This runs from Balgzand to Bacton in Norfolk. This pipeline has an import capacity of 14.2 bcm a year.
      The Vesterled pipeline link: This pipeline connects St Fergus in Scotland to a number of Norweigan gasfields. This pipeline has a capacity of 14.2bcm a year.
      The Langeled pipeline: At the time of its commissioning in 2006 this pipeline, which runs from Nyhamna in Norway to Easington in Yorkshire, became the longest underwater gas pipeline in the world at 1,200km. The pipeline has a capacity of 26.3 bcm.

      More detailed information on gas volumes can be found:

      https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/540923/Chapter_4_web.pdf

    • We may export or re-export some gas but we IMPORT well over 40 percent of our energy. If the Labour Party had any guts it would see off the Tory nimbys & their green stooges & get on with maximising home energy production . Not all their worthy policies can be financed on credit. But perhaps protesting is more fun.

    • Ellie, Sure there are ample supplies of gas to buy. But much of that gas is fracked gas, and it is all more environmentally harmful than domestically produced gas So, the point is (and you acknowledge this) that the country must keep using gas for an indefinite time period, it might as well try to produce its own in the name of sparing the environment. Let’s ban NIMBYs instead of fracking.

      • I know hball that you struggle to understand the fact that one of the UK’s biggest industry’s is the North Sea oil and gas industry. Would it help if we paid for you and your friends to go on a guided tour of the North Sea. Maybe if you spoke to the 375,000 people who work in the industry they may be able to convince you of the fact there is still 20 billion barrels left. In the UK 20 billion is a big number. So you see we already produce home grown gas.

    • Ellie where are the “adequate supplies of conventional gas”, the only glut in the gas market at the moment is imported LNG which has a higher co2 profile than home produced shale. I think about 20% of our imported LNG comes from Qatar. We also currently have a shortage of gas storage due to problems with the Rough facility in the North Sea which will make us more dependent at times of cold weather on regular imported shipments this winter. Luckily as I said there appears to be a glut.

  7. So the Tory’s Mr Norman says ‘safe development of shale can create jobs and improve our energy security’ etc . Where is the evidence for that safety? I’ve been searching constantly for 3 years and have yet to find it. There is currently a completely divisive process of regulation and control, with some areas overseen by planning authorities, some by EA, some HSE and some Oil and Gas authority. This rather conveniently – for this govt and industry – gives piecemeal approval, while allowing important considerations to go unaddressed. One could almost believe the responsibility shuffling to be deliberate.

    I have yet to see anyone even considering performing the absolutely vital and necessary function of assessing the whole industry and its implications and cumulative impacts. This would need to include climate change impact (both immediate and ongoing implications), economic, regulatory, policing and enforcement, environmental, social, air, water, waste water, traffic, health and safety issues. Economic issues must encompass the development of stranded assets (i.e. in 10-20 years or even less, with the possible exception of the chemical/plastics industry, hydrocarbons will inevitably be largely dead, whether the earth is still inhabitable or not), sustainability (once the word has been correctly defined), actual and perceived effects on agriculture, tourism and any other industry vulnerable to unsustainable and short-term fracking development. This all-encompassing study must be rigorously independent and peer reviewed, using existing independent studies augmented by new studies where required. To summarise; a whole life, all encompassing assessment of the fracking industry. How could any responsible government possibly refuse such a blindingly obvious move? Dares you!

    Mr Norman also says ‘as we work build a country that works for everyone’. Prove it! Provide the hard evidence. It needs to work for existing industries too, for the mental and physical health of everyone, for the safe future of our water supplies and our long term future on this planet. Prove that it really can benefit everyone, not just a nice earner for a few. Rhetoric and enthusiastic assurances are just not good enough. Sound science, sound engineering and facts are needed.

    Finally, GMBs Mr Smith says ‘The first fracked gas from America arrives tomorrow’ and ‘We are increasingly going to be dependent on regimes fronted by henchmen, hangmen and head-choppers for the gas we need’ Is that a wise description of Mr Trump or even Mrs Clinton, given that one will shortly be the US president – heaven help us if it’s the former.

    • ‘The first fracked gas from America arrives tomorrow’

      Is that the ‘fracked gas’ that has been produced by a company with a very dodgy record of regulation compliance and environmental damage?

      Shame, shame, shame

      • Mike, a complex comment but just to say probably the best evidence of the safety of shale is the thousands of wells drilled safely in the USA – yes of course there has been bad practice and accidents but compared with other fossil fuels (which we will inevitably want until renewables solve the intermittency problem) shale is the safest option. I do wish the media would direct their attention to the dangers to our fuel supply at least as much as they do to climate change issues. While we are working on developing renewables, we do need to keep warm.

      • Tell you what, if a company has a dodgy record of regulation compliance I know let’s ban their feedstock and threaten the livelihoods of many working class Scots, or maybe what we could do is make sure the regulatory regime is fit for purpose and applied rigorously.

        By the way good to see the GMB is standing up for the ordinary working bloke while Corbyn is engaged in jumping on an irrational, populist bandwagon.

        • ‘By the way good to see the GMB is standing up for the ordinary working bloke while Corbyn is engaged in jumping on an irrational, populist bandwagon’.

          I would read this the opposite way around. Corbyn stands for the majority. Corbyn is anything but a wagon jumper. He believes in the right for all to choose, not just a ‘chosen’ few. That’s why the media don’t support him.

          Are you advocating the use of a product even though it has caused, and will continue to cause, great harm on many plains? Lives destroyed for a plastic bag?

          Regarding union support, Start Fegan and the GMB have around half a million members whilst Unite, who has over 3 million members, supports renewables and does not support fracking. Both unions are part of the Labour movement.

          Unite have put forward a viable campaign for 1,000,000 climate jobs in the renewable industry; a hundred times more than those currently employed at Grangemouth.

          If the regulatory regime was indeed fit for purpose, they would shut down the industry now. That’s not what the ‘bet fred’ investors want, because it would ruin their ponzi scheme. Instead the government has reduced the regulatory bodies to a skeleton force that cannot possibly keep up, and leave it to the individuals affected to police and sue, which would take years after the event, by which time the shale gas company has likely liquidated and buggered off!

      • Yes Sherwulf, it is the company that has an appalling record of reg compliance, coming to England to join all other violaters of reg compliance over here. The EA, helped by frackers and drillers, has re written its regs to say set up your dirty industry in our flood prone zones and once floods roll out we wont be enforcing our regs due to flooding…..easy work if you can get it. Visit the EA site to see all violations taking place under gold plat reg standards….and weep with despair.

        It isn’t there is not enough money for reg enforcement and monitoring, it is that there isn’t the will to avoid pollution trading in England.

  8. A nice flurry of statistics flying around here, but none of these estimable figures, pro or anti, address the simple issue that is really at the heart of this furor. That is that the plans to frack invade and destroy what remains of our rural countryside, the results of that are simple and need no statistics, realistic or otherwise, and that is that peoples land air and water will be polluted to the point where they will be forced to leave in a mass migration to those areas still unpolluted, that effort will be crippled by a catastrophic drop in house prices, land which cannot be sold, livestock dying of contaminated water, air and feedstocks, adults and childrens health compromised, noise of constant growling traffic of massive trucks too big for local roads and the pollution and accidents resulting in that, leading to more pollution and making everyones lives a misery. the inevitable loss of industry, farm products, the destruction of organic produce. The massive increase in the number of drill sites and extraction compressors and distribution networks, look at any satellite map of America or Canada or Australia and you will see the incredible number of extraction and compressor sites, massive depletion of water resources and no where to take the waste, it will be ‘re-injected’ back into the drills and only a small amount of that will stay down there, most of that will find its way to the surface, springs, streams rivers fissures, all will become conduits for the waste. It wont just be the ones we see here at the moment, as land and houses and businesses become worthless they will be bought up in the fracking feeding frenzy and more pads, more pollution, more accidents. no gold standard regulations, no monitoring, no on site presence, no legal recompense. And then what, no responsibility to clean up the waste, it cant be done anyway, its too expensive even to think about it, so it will be hidden, excuses made, apologies six months or more later and it will all ready be too late. The depleted wells will then become cash cows, they will be used to dispose of nuclear waste, UK is stock piling this from all over the world, where do you think it will be put? there will be no maintenance of these dry drills, the steel pipes will rust, the concrete seals will crumble and fail, joints protecting aquifers will fail and more pollution will pour into the environment. Make no mistake, this WILL happen, dont be fooled by clever words and assurances, statistics and estimates, the real result will be the permanent destruction of this countries environment, radiation, pollution, CO2 methane, these will seep into the atmosphere, result, a polluted land where nothing can live. Nothing less than eco suicide, and its not even necessary, its a con, a short term profit motive, the Hegelian dialectic, proposes this, create a problem, control the reaction, impose the solution you always intended right from the start. Boris and brexit, the MO is to own all the sides of the argument, dumb down the population, play them like a cheap plastic violin. And we fall for it right down the line. Go figure.
    Have a nice day, start counting good days.

    • Wow. That was enlightenment and educational but I feel really depressed now of such pessimistic and brackish outlook and view of the world. I shall stock up organic food and fresh water now in my garden shed just in case.

      • I don’t mean to be pessimistic, I just see all these fine words, pro and con and that is little more than a discussion on the pros and cons of ice bergs on the deck of the sinking Titanic. Edifying though that may be, it fails to address the real problem. I would suggest stopping the Titanic entering the ice berg field in the first place. Stocking up on deckchairs isn’t the answer.

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