Opponents of Third Energy’s plans to frack at Kirby Misperton in Ryedale, carried Yorkshire white roses as they gathered at the Royal Courts of Justice in London where their legal challenge will be heard this morning.
Campaigners from Friends of the Earth and Frack Free Ryedale are seeking a judicial review of the decision by North Yorkshire County Council to approve fracking and gas production at the KM8 well.
If the court agrees to hear the case, it will go ahead later today. DrillOrDrop will be reporting on the proceedings.
The two groups argue the decision was wrong in law because councillors did not properly consider the climate change impact of burning gas from the well at Third Energy’s nearby Knapton power station.
They also say the council failed to secure long-term financial protection from the company against the risk of long-term environmental damage.
Rev Jackie Cray, one of the campaigners bringing the case for Frack Free Ryedale, said this morning:
“Fracking is harmful to the environment, health and the land. We don’t want fracking in this country, in our village, for these reasons. We don’t think it is a safe industry.
“The Third Energy development will mean 900 traffic movements for just the test frack on a very narrow road in our village. It will be difficult for children getting to school and parents dropping off toddlers. My greatest fear is for children in the village.
Friends of the Earth’s Yorkshire and Humber campaigner, Simon Bowens, said:
“We are really fired up for our day in court.
“We think we have a strong case on both grounds. The council has not assessed the climate change impact fully and they have not put in full protection for any long term damage.”
North Yorkshire County Council said its planning committee “gave proper regard to all material planning considerations before approving the application”.
Third Energy said it had “every confidence” that the council followed “all due procedures” in reaching their decision.