A fourth survey of residents in Cheshire has found more than 75% oppose fracking.
The latest poll in Helsby, a village between Chester and Runcorn, was released last week.
- 9.0% of respondents believed fracking would be a good thing for the area
- 79.7% believed fracking would be a bad thing for the area
- 11.3% didn’t know or had no opinion on whether fracking would be good or bad for the area
Women were slightly more opposed to fracking than men (82.1% compared with 78.1%). Younger people were more opposed to fracking than people aged 75+.
Surveys in neighbouring Frodsham and in Mickle Trafford and Guilden Sutton near Chester have also put opposition to fracking at more than 75% and support at under 10%.
Helsby is in exploration licence area PEDL190, awarded to IGas in 2008 and now held in partnership with INEOS Upstream. IGas drilled a well at Ince Marshes in 2011 to explore for coal bed methane. Planning permission for this site, granted for 25 years, covers appraisal, production and electricity generation. Another coal bed methane well, Kemira-1, was drilled in 1994.
In 2016, INEOS held a series of private meetings about shale gas with parish and town councils. Members of Helsby Parish Council attended a meeting in May 2016.
INEOS is the licence operator of PEDL194 (map right), which includes Frodsham, where a similar survey was carried out last year. It is also a partner with IGas in PEDL189, where surveys were carried out at Mickle Trafford and Guilden Sutton.
Helsby survey details
The Helsby survey result was released on 17 February 2017. It was conducted by Frack Free Frodsham and Helsby and, like the others, analysed by Fusion Data Science.
- 1,200 questionnaires were distributed door-door to a random sample of households in the Helsby Parish Council area
- The questionnaires were collected over the following three weeks and a minimum of three collection attempts were made
- 687 completed questionnaires were received (57.3%)
- Of these, 11 were blank, spoiled or ambiguous leaving a valid total of 676 questionnaires (56.3%)
The valid questionnaires included the views of 1,227 local adult residents. 4,059 adults were estimated by the Office for National Statistics to live in the Helsby Parish Council area in 2014
The count, on 22 October 2016, was supervised by Fusion Data Science and observed by local councillors and residents.