Anti-fracking campaigners gather at court for challenge against government on shale gas consent

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Opponents of Cuadrilla’s fracking plans near Blackpool have gathered outside the High Court in Manchester for a challenge against the Communities’ Secretary, Sajid Javid.

In October 2016, Mr Javid granted planning permission to Cuadrilla to drill, frack and test up to four shale gas wells at its site at Preston New Road, Little Plumpton.

He followed the recommendation of a planning inspector after a 19-day planning inquiry. But his decision overrturned the refusal of consent by Lancashire County Council in June 2015.

The campaigner, Gayzer Frackman, and local residents, the Preston New Road Action Group are bringing separate statutory challenges against Mr Javid.

They will argue during a hearing, expected to last three days, that Mr Javid’s decision was unlawful and should be quashed.

DrillOrDrop will be reporting throughout the hearing, which begins at 9.30am.

Cuadrilla began the site work at Preston New Road on 5 January 2017 and is expected to begin drilling during the three months between April and June 2017.

Key facts about the Preston New Road site

Photos of the Preston New Road site 

Climate change becomes fracking’s legal battle ground

11 replies »

  1. Good luck to both sides. The best rational argument will win the day. Our judicial system and judges are the best in the world and this is why our society are better than other corrupted failed states. So whatever the decision I think it is consistent with the law and is in the best interest of the society.

    • This raises the issue of whether UK law is consistent with our obligations under international law agreements. And there is a blurred line between government policy, the law, and imposition of planning guidance which is not law. Not so clear cut, TW, I’m afraid.

    • One major flaw in your statement:…”Our judicial system and judges are the best in the world and this is why our society are better than other corrupted failed states….” The judiciary have been shown to be as corrupt as any other judiciary as they continue to uphold the corporate structure, part of which is the state government, so I suggest you reconsider your assertions which come across as not just inaccurate but naive…Please do your own research on this…but a typical example for starters could be an examination of the 1997 “scrutiny of evidence” in respect of the Hillsborough disaster which was carried out by one of our “Lord Justices”….Bearing in mind all the covered up evidence now absolutely proven to the people (much of which was available to the CPS/DPP/judiciary at that time)…if this example of judicial decision-making cannot be considered “corrupt” please tell me what your definition of corruption is??
      My hope is that our judiciary, for once, will represent the interests of the people of Lancashire and this country…and NOT the corporate elitists. After all, no matter which side you support on the fracking issue, it is evident that our government has overridden democracy by autocratically dismissing a local council decision which represented the PEOPLE’S requirements.

      • You sound a little bit narrow minded and somewhat self-serving. The government also represents people’s essential requirements such as energy security and supplies, economic growth and jobs, national deficit and taxes etc. And not just your me me tranquility of locak leisure life style. And to call our judicial system as corrupted is an insult to most law biding citizens and the people who work hard to maintain it.

  2. I would lose the “and is in the best interest of the society” bit TW – the law is just the law and sometimes leads to “interesting” outcomes.

  3. I hope some of you understand the difference between law and legal. Legal is more on legislation. Law is lawful as in the magna carta . law of the land.corporations favour maritime law. As it is !anipulated and changed to suit corporations. Huge differance.

  4. It’s planning law that is being considered. Laws which have been deliberately manipulated by the government to suit their corporate friends rather than the general public. Laws are man made, they are not necessarily morally right.

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