Police drag Green Party co-leader from N Yorks fracking site

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Green Party co-leader dragged from the gate at Third Energy’s site at Kirby Misperton, 10 November 2017. Photo: Still from a video by Kirby Misperton Protection Camp

The co-leader of the Green Party, Jonathan Bartley, was dragged by police away from the entrance to Third Energy’s fracking site at Kirby Misperton this afternoon.

Mr Bartley was making a speech to opponents of plans to frack the KM8 well at the site when police asked people to move away from the entrance to allow a delivery.

A single unlabelled tanker, escorted by three police vehicles, was waiting to enter the site.

Livestream video showed people at the gate shouting “arms together, lock together”. Members of the crowd were removed from the area by police. Some people were pushed and fell over

A spokesperson for Kirby Misperton Protection Camp said:

“At this point, Jonathan chose to sit to establish a sense of calm and hold a peaceful protest at the gateway. He was lifted by two policeman who dragged him aside to a verge where police held people in containment.”

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Jonathan Bartley, dragged by police from the gate at Kirby Misperton, 10 November 2017. Photo: Still from a video by Kirby Misperton Protection Camp

Superintendent Alisdair Dey, of North Yorkshire Police, said:

“A number of people were standing, sitting and lying in the road outside the hydraulic fracturing site at 1.15pm today. Officers explained they were blocking the road, and asked them to move on several occasions, but they refused to do so. Several people were then moved away by officers.

“We know that there are very different views about hydraulic fracturing, but as the local police, our responsibility is to carry out our duties impartially. That means we have a duty to make sure that people who want to assemble and protest do so safely, balanced against a duty to ensure that businesses can go about their lawful commercial activity.”

Before the police action, Mr Bartley had been speaking to a crowd of about 50 people as part of Green Friday. This is the Green Party’s adopted day of support for those fighting fracking in Kirby Misperton.

He said:

“It is simply unacceptable to go and pursue another industry like fracking that is going to contribute to climate change. We should be showing leadership

“The scientific consensus is absolutely clear, and going down this fracking route is entirely the wrong thing to do.”

The atmosphere had been described as calm and jovial. Among the crowd were children, dogs and group of friends who had visited the site as part of a local school reunion.

Mr Bartley said:

“The fact that the government has to bribe, has to pay local communities in order to allow fracking to go ahead, I think, speaks volumes.

“Michael Gove, Theresa May, where is your localism agenda now? Where is it? This is where it’s happening, on the ground, locally, people are making their voices heard.

“They are saying very clearly what they want for their local communities and you’re not respecting it.

“What kind of government allows local communities to stop onshore wind, but doesn’t allow them to stop fracking in their back yards? It’s frankly unacceptable.”

The Green Party’s energy spokesperson, Andrew Cooper, send a message to people outside the site:

“I’m very aware that you, at Kirby Misperton, are in the front line against climate change.

“All the work that you are doing to highlight the dangers of fracking both to our local and global environments is invaluable.

“Everybody who locks on, everybody who surfs a lorry, everybody who turns up, everybody who makes a cup of tea for the protectors there, is doing an amazing job.

“So my message to you is keep on doing it. Keep on fighting, keep on protecting, and let’s stop that fracking.”

21 replies »

  1. My faith in the British police has been returned.
    What is the point of this guy? How many leaders does a minor and declining party need? I thought it impossible for them to come up with a weaker “replacement” for the Australian person, but they did.
    If the UK Greens started to sort out their own unjustified consumption of the earths resources within the UK by doing some long needed pruning it would be very welcome. Remember, they will shortly lose all their MEPs too.
    Addressing around 50 people-including 2 Green officials? Or did they bring their own bus load. Were the dogs included in the total?

    If this little event was meant to galvanise the weekend press, I suspect it may be ousted by a cat stuck in a cat flap.

  2. Derisory? Moi? Look at the guy.

    He turns up to try and get coverage that his competence does not warrant. He is in rural Yorkshire but dressed (for the cameras) as if he is a second hand (diesel?) car sales-man. Surprised Rodney wasn’t there as well. Certainly not “one of the people”. The Yorkshire folk can see through him-but, we all know, he has no interest in them.

    You only have a “rally” to try and delay a defeat.

    • ‘but, we all know, he has no interest in them’ and just who a ‘we’? You?
      Referring to the people of Yorkshire as ‘The Yorkshire folk’ is very patronizing.
      It is insensitive to be derisive of a person’s attire, some would say a hostile opinion about some person or class of persons. Prejudice is socially learned and is usually grounded in misconception, misunderstanding, and inflexible generalizations

  3. How did Jonathan Bartley get to the site, by car? fueled by petrol derived from oil extracted from the Earth, transported by ships fueled by diesel. Will the wind turbines and solar panels provide enough energy to allow Jonathan to drive. to his protests, I think not? Note that 80% of UK households use gas, the UK needs gas for heating and industry. Stop these stupid protests and let the natural gas industry prove that fracking is safe.

    • Gasman. In the interest of fact sharing, you might want to check your statement with Mr Bartley before posting, otherwise it may make you look insensitive and bigoted?

      ‘Stop these stupid protests and let the natural gas industry prove that fracking is safe.’ You say natural gas? Natural gas is usually the term given to conventional gas extraction. Or are you are referring to shale gas and the fracking process, i.e. commonly referred to as unconventional gas extraction? In which case you may have information to share with us and the Scottish, Welsh and Irish Parliaments?

      Oh and don’t forget to cc the UN Climate Change Committee….

  4. What’s he complaint about? He illegally block the road, been asked to move and refuse to comply. So he got removed. Does he expect the police to wheelchair him or forklift him out of the way or something. He got dragged out of the way. So big deal. Good work the police.

  5. [Edited by moderator]

    If the arguments and actions of the antis are disturbed by my comments, perhaps seek to adjust the former rather than the latter?

    Censorship is a last resort, when the argument has been lost.

  6. Jonathan Bartley is a great leader. If only more MPs represented their people like he does. Terrific to see another one of them roll his sleeves up and join the growing public opposition to this new and dangerous action. Fracking should be dragged from our country and prosecuted for a breach of the peace. The UN should be making our government accountable for this proven dangerous and harmful practice, and industry should pay.

    Keep up the great work Jonathan.

  7. Ah the poor little guy. He’s had a hard time of it psychologically so has turned to be a greeny to find peace.
    Only thing is the greens aren’t really about peace, they simply promote their own ideology and will do anything to see it through.
    Hopefully he doesn’t make the trek up again anytime soon.

    • So of course by your post GBK you know Mr Jonathan Bartley personally? No? I thought not. I wonder if you are able to articulate your apparent hatred of those that don’t agree with you, face to face? Probably not.

      • Sher did I suggest any hatred towards him? I’ve argued lefties to the ground time and time again, they become even more aggressive when they realise they’ve got nothing more left. I gave up a couple of years ago as I felt I was being a bit of a bully.
        It’s easy to moan much harder to come up with viable alternatives. I’m a bit more of a doer than a moaner.

        • GBK. If you bother to read you will see I wrote ‘I wonder if you are able to articulate your apparent hatred of those that don’t agree with you, face to face?’

          I am pleased you have moved away from your negative behaviour as a ‘bit of a bully’; the use of patronizing description ‘Ah the poor little guy’ and name calling ‘greeny’ is so ugly.

          Well done.

        • That statement merely illustrates the condition that defines the attitude of all the posts you make peeny.

          The accusations towards others does not and will not ever define anyone else but your own actions.

          Everyone comes up with entirely viable and extremely advanced alternatives that blow the fracking debacle into a waste bin where it belongs.

          But all we get in return is this same rationally degenerating and aggressive personal attacks, nasty epithets, derogatory name calling and tabloid acronyms, but no constructive content, nothing technical, nothing of any factual or rational value, just empty angry rhetoric.

          Most of us are trying to build the basis for a better, more beneficial less polluting future for our children and their children. All we get from the fracking fraternity is more of the same jealously guarded profit motivated inertia imperatives to preserve the suicidal status quo.

          All that attitude intends is to extend the same proven disastrous operations that are provenly destructive and poisonous into an onshore invasion into our countryside just to preserve the old oligarchies fossil fuelled power base.

          The logical renewable alternatives will overtake, supersede and supplant such poisonous processes, it will take a while to overcome the industry inertia and temper tantrums, but the renewable energy sources time has come, and the oligarchies either take that and run with it, or they will fall under its unstoppable forward motion. Anything else is simply suicidal insanity.

          This present crisis is what that transformation is all about, people will no longer put up with the overbearing self serving, self preservation activities of the old and decaying guard.
          Change will happen, the old and decaying complacent guard will either ride that wave or go under, so far from all the recent cries of “but you need us!” shows is that they will go under.

          Many species in past millions of years did the same, they were so assured of their own food source they interbred and roamed in vast herds across the planet clear cutting every living thing in sight.
          Eventually the climate changed because of their own activities, the food sources ran out, they perished in their billions, starved of their so assured food source, and just before they did so, they turned on each other.

          Look around you, the old decaying insane guard is tearing each other apart, look at Saudi Arabia and the princely coup there, Quatar and Libya, Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Syria, look at USA, the insane growing civil war there, Europe and UK brexit and the inertia to preserve rice bowls, China and North Korea, they are ripping into each other for that last little advantage to be top dog on top of the abattoir. Just until the abattoir doors open of course.

          We would rather that didn’t happen to its inevitable conclusion, we are not monsters, unlike some, the clean up and paperwork will last for centuries if that is allowed to happen, so wake up and move towards a better future or the future will simply bypass you without a second look.

          • Phil C. Very well said. We are fighting for the survival of the planet and all that share it yet all we get is abuse. Incredibly short sighted. Thank you to all the protesters against cracking and the climate change denial industry and their friends

  8. Fracking is evil, and the UK does not need it, nowhere does, but noone is really bothered. This brusque-treatment by the police, calling it dragging away, when it seems to involve assisted floating? Still it is something, a potential caution. It’s good to see people sitting down for what they stand for, but so few.

  9. Would you go back if you had been carried or dragged away, repeatedly, or pushed out of the way if you are walking out of the way and the police are in a hurry? Yet local people have come back day in day out, some til they literally cannot safely do it any more, they get targetted repeatedly by the police. Yorkshire folk have shown gritty determination to oppose this industry, and continue to do so, to protect our families and environment, the County we love.

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