Fracking at the Conservative conference

181001 preview for Conservative Conference rally

Women from across the UK, dressed as Suffragettes, are expected to gather outside the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham on 1 October 2018. Photo: Friends of the Earth

This year’s Conservative conference, which starts in Birmingham on Sunday (30/9/18), is expected to see two events about fracking and a rally by opponents of shale gas.

A fringe meeting on Sunday (30 September 2018) debates the case for a Conservative rethink on fracking.

On Monday, dozens of women, dressed as Suffragettes, are expected to travel from across the country to highlight public opposition to fracking and the proposals. They will be gathering outside a fringe event on energy security at which the energy minister, Claire Perry, is expected to speak.

More details


The North East Derbyshire MP, Lee Rowley, is the headline speaker at Sunday’s meeting. He has opposed shale gas exploration by Ineos in his constituency at Marsh Lane. At a recent parliamentary debate, he opposed government proposals to fast-track fracking by changing the planning system.

He will be joined by: Daniel Carey-Dawes, senior infrastructure campaigner at CPRE; community campaigner Frank Colenso from Ryedale; and Kenelm Storey, president of Thirsk and Malton Conservative Association and owner of the Settrington Estate in North Yorkshire.

The meeting publicity suggests that shale gas developments would have a limited impact on energy security but could lead to thousands of industrial fracking sites across Conservative marginal seats.

Steve Mason, of Frack Free United, a collective of residents, campaign networks and politicians  opposing fracking, said:

“It’s time to take the fracking issue into the heart of government. The Lib Dems and Labour conferences have had a visit from us. It makes sense to take the discussion directly to the Conservative Party. Fracking affects all walks of life. Time to express that concern to all sides of the political spectrum.”

On Monday, women living near Cuadrilla’s shale gas site in Lancashire will be among those taking part in a rally outside the conference.

Their day-long protest will focus on the fringe meeting hosted by the onshore oil and gas industry body, UKOOG, titled: Energy security: is shale gas better for Britain?.

180925 UKOOG tweet

The event is chaired by John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance. As well as Ms Perry, advertised speakers at the event include: Mike Bradshaw, professor of global energy at Warwick University; Ken Cronin, chief executive of UKOOG; Natascha Engel, the former Labour MP for North East Derbyshire (Mr Rowley’s seat) and now director of Palace Yard Communications; and Stuart Fegan, national officer for the gas and water sectors at the GMB Union.

Ruth Owens, a mother from Thornton in Lancashire who will be travelling to Birmingham, said:

“Fracking is being forced on our communities against the wishes of local people and democratically-elected Councillors. We are at the Conservative conference to say enough is enough.

“If the Government’s proposals to fast-track fracking go through then the Conservative party will be remembered for opening the door to industrialisation of our precious countryside, undermining local democracy and silencing people on decisions which affect them.”

The former Green Party leader, Natalie Bennett, will also be attending the rally. She said:

“Conservative MPs and Councillors up and down the country are rejecting the Government’s plans to make gaining permission for shale gas drilling as easy as for building a shed, and to take fracking decisions away from local authorities.

“If these dangerous proposals go ahead it will seriously undermine local decision-making and silence the voices of communities. The Government must listen to colleagues in their own party and to the general public and scrap these deeply unpopular plans.”

61 replies »

  1. Whoever said turkeys don’t vote for Christmas obviously forgot about the Constituency of Fylde, a Tory stronghold but still going to be test fracked anytime soon!
    Propaganda has overwhelmed the determination of precaution here but I think now, too late, the penny is starting to drop.

  2. Anyone gullible enough to believe in Corbyn probably should have their voting rights removed. Still waiting to hear a plausible energy plan from the antis that doesn’t feature fairy dust and unicorns from Scotland.

      • There are many belief systems in the human psyche; many are valid; too many lead to death and destruction. The belief that fossil fuel will be the energy of the future is the later, but like religion, it takes generations for the awakening. Soon, those who have relied on the black stuff will move on to whatever eternity they hold dear, leaving the young to pick up the pieces and hopefully create a better heaven on earth.

        No unicorns here; trot on

        • Gas keeps me warm in Winter

          Religion causes wars and discrimination

          Keep your fairy stories to yourself

          What keeps you warm this coming Winter?

          Faith or Gas, you choose…

          • You do have a very short memory Kishy; am happy that you are warm this winter, not so happy for those in the world whose islands are flooding due to your burning fossil fuel, no cosy place for them this winter, am afraid.

            Of course, we will remembers your name in history [if the human race survives?]

            • You have brought religion into this sher, do you have a some divine right to dictate to the many to feel guilty being warm this Winter. What is your solution to keeping the U.K warm? You don’t have one…

              By developing U.K shale Gas we will take responsibility for our own energy needs and as a result of this we WILL bring down our CO2 emissions, so those people most at risk of climate change will thank us

              It is an absolute truth that the U.K can’t power itself through 100% intermittent renewables, a strive to do this will result in the Position Germany finds itself in. Burning mountains of coal to supplement its failing wind turbine project. Now it is trying to turn away from coal by using Gas. The Nord Sream 2 pipeline isn’t fast enough so I am in Australia at the moment on a Gas project which will send said Gas LNG to Germany!!!

              carry on praying sher…

              I’ll carry on providing…

              Please send me that water into wine recipe from that book you put your faith in, I could do with a glass…

    • ‘Still waiting to hear a plausible energy plan from the antis’

      For pro frackers who have not done their homework

      The overall demand for gas including heating gradually decreases and is replaced by renewables.

      Natural gas use is projected to fall by 24% between 2016 and 2035. Currently, the amount of natural gas used for electricity generation approximately equals that used for cooking and heating in households. However, the amount of gas used for electricity generation is projected to decrease by 70% whereas the amount used by households is projected to increase by around 17% over this period.

      By 2035 renewables will be producing 180 TWh of electric generation whereas gas will only be producing 40 TWh.

      After 2025 our import requirements will be dropping

      Click to access Updated_energy_and_emissions_projections_2016.pdf

      Meanwhile output from the North sea is enjoying it’s third year of increased production


      Of course these stats are correct under Conservative control which is trying to strangle our massive renewable potential. Imagine how cheap and clean our energy could be if the Government maximised our renewable potential.

      UK shale has everything stacked against it. To dear by far, to environmentally damaging, and not needed now or in the future.

      Unicorns and fairy dust comments. Very professional.

      • Here you go John – choose one of these NG options for UK:


        Are you talking about the UK only or saving the planet? I’m sure you are very aware that UK going to 100% renewables tomorrow makes no difference to climate change globally? And it will make a big difference to us keeping warm and our lights on. As I said before, 7x zero = zero despite what JC says…..


        “The global energy mix is the most diverse the world has ever seen by 2040, with oil, gas, coal and non-fossil fuels each contributing around 25%.”

      • I have been part of a team that installed an Offshore wind farm.

        Without subsidies it would take 50 years to pay for itself. The turbines are scrap after 20 years.

        If you feel you can make statements about the future using the internet, chicken bones and crystal balls feel free.

        Or did good old renewables poster boy Elon Musk tell you this on Twitter?

        • “The UK is well on the way to a new era of subsidy-free renewable energy projects that will largely kill off prospects for new gas power stations, according to industry analysts”.


          Meanwhile the tax payer has to subsidise fossil fuels.


          • John – subsidy free renewables are great news. We look forward to it. And we also look forward to continuing with fossil fuels to ensure we have electricity and heating on demand. And if that needs to be subsidised aka the Guardian definition then so be it. It is essential.

            • Paul; why should one energy system be ‘subsidized’ and another not? It is not the Guardian definition, it is the reality. Any tax break is a subsidy, often used to hide state intervention so that other trading partners don’t cry foul!

              We should take all ‘subsidies’ off all energy production and let the people know the real cost of the energy; let’s see how many start to use more wisely? And indeed, how quickly the price will fall and less super yachts bought.

              Electricity and heating on demand? How about reducing the demand? Let’s say electricity and heating when needed, then maybe we will be getting somewhere.

              The demand mentality will be what destroys our climate and ultimately, us.

            • A tax break from a different tax level…..

              Global demand is going up and up and up – we have discussed this….

              And super yacht construction is booming.

            • Global demand is going up and up….your point?
              Yes 600 ordered this year, and more children below the poverty line in the UK than ever; what a legacy.

            • UK gas needs are going down down down. Renewables construction is booming.

              We have discussed this

              Natural gas use is projected to fall by 24% between 2016 and 2035. Currently, the amount of natural gas used for electricity generation approximately equals that used for cooking and heating in households. However, the amount of gas used for electricity generation is projected to decrease by 70% whereas the amount used by households is projected to increase by around 17% over this period.

              By 2035 renewables will be producing 180 TWh of electric generation whereas gas will only be producing 40 TWh.

              After 2025 our import requirements will be dropping

            • Sher I think you’ll find it’s the Putin Puppet protesters causing £Millions to be spent on policing

              Tax alone on road tax for trucks, tax duty on fuel, business tax etc etc are paying for roads

              I see you stopped after that…

          • According to industry analysts???

            The Offshore Dutch wind farm you are referring to has struck a deal for a fixed high price per MW produced and arranged with the Government to install the infrastructure!!! Basically subsidies in disguise, but nice try; looks a good headline though. Shame it’s BS…

            The U.K taxpayer doesn’t subsidise U.K shale Gas. In fact the U.K tax payer will benefit to the tune of £Billions of Pounds in tax revenue to the U.K Treasury.

            Don’t worry the U.K tax payer will still be paying 9% of their household energy bill as a green tax to the green gangster ponzi schemes…

    • So I looked at your facts and figures – yes the con vote went up by 9.5% and Green down to 1.5 from 2.5 but the Lab went up 14.5% so it wasn’t a case of Tina losing votes but of more people voting for Lab as they were the only party in with a chance. As for life long Con voters they are amazingly difficult to get any message through to.

      But then seems you are too.

      • Cuadrilla drill bit in the ground at the time of General Election.

        Tina Rothery The Green Party actually lost more votes than the previous General Election.

        The Labour Party issued the exploratory drilling licences in 2008 to start the U.K Shale Gas industry

        Spin it however you like but these are the cold hard facts…

        • So it seems kishy, that to be a credible person in your schema, you can only stick to the original decision with no deviation to be right? Am sure many will disagree with you.

          The purpose of research, data and information extracted from data, is to inform on current and future decisions. Sadly, like the Cons, your record seems to be stuck in the groove and you refuse to acknowledge any new findings as they do not fit your belief system. Fortunately you are only a little minnow in the grand scheme of things – although there are a lot of stubborn Tetraodontidae in the current governance 😉

            • No you haven’y you have stated ‘old’ in now irrelevant ‘facts’ Kishy…[you don’t need to shout].

              Something that sits well with the obsolete point of view….

          • Still FACTS sher

            Try stating some Facts yourself?

            Just stating that while a shale gas drill bit was drilling in the ground at the PNR site during the last General Election last year actually reduced votes for Tina Rothery and the green party

            Have you more recent information on the General Election that was held?

            If you want more up to date FACTS why not talk about the imminent extraction and results of GAS flow rates at the PNR site and the huge benefit it will give the U:K…

            Get your teeth in that sher…

            • Before the world was described as round; the fact bandied about was that it was flat…..I see you are still holding a torch for the past.

              You seem to be repeating yourself, a sure sign you don’t have a valid argument. [And if you shout, it doesn’t make it any clearer, just bad manners].

              Get your mouth round that one Kishy.

  3. So who is so gullible to believe the myth that fracking has anything to do with energy security? It’s a Ponzi scheme and environmental disaster. The barriers to wind/solar/tidal/hydro/wood and other sustainable renewables meeting ALL our energy needs are NOT technological, but political and cultural. And that point came from a former UK Government CHIEF SCIENTIST.

    • A rather child like statement Ian

      I would say extracting Gas a couple of hundred metres away from point of entry into the Gas grid is meeting security of supply criteria wouldn’t you?

      If you honestly believe the U.K could provide for itself all its energy needs from 100% intermittent renewables try doing it for yourself for one day and please let everyone know how you get on…

      • ‘I would say extracting Gas a couple of hundred metres away from point of entry into the Gas grid is meeting security of supply criteria wouldn’t you?’ – NO

        • ‘ 100% intermittent renewables try doing it for yourself for one day and please let everyone know how you get on…’ – yep, doing it, works fine; you just have to change your mindset and adapt 🙂

        • Why NO…

          You couldn’t get a better security of supply, a couple of 100 metres away from where it is needed

          Or do you prefer a secure supply from Norway, Russia, Qatar, U.S.A, Peru, Egypt, Holland… Thousands of miles and political lines away???

          Please explain your logic

          Can’t wait…

            • Don’t make me laugh

              For a start they come from China

              The financial cost won’t cover the electricity they produce

              What do you do on a cold winters night

              Pray for daylight???

            • You are funny Kishy, you really don’t know how it all works; just narrow minded and stuck in a fossilized rut; there’s no telling you, is there?

              You know it all? – not

              ‘Better to be the head of a dog than the tail of a lion’…

  4. Tory MPs and councillors are waking up with the Permitted Development proposals to the vast scale of fracking and it’s impacts as compared to its tiny and temporary impact on meeting our energy needs. Coal is being replaced with renewables and soon gas will be too. There is no future in gas. Investors beware: even the free market is turning against shale in Europe as are many nations.

  5. There is NOT going to be any Fracking in the Weald valley Sussex or any where in southern England .So stay up north you ignorant protestors

  6. Whether the planning laws are change or not will ultimately make no difference the Government will ride roughshod over local planning decisions and the opinions of local communities.

        • errata
          The Labour Party would reverse the obscene austerity policies of the Cons and their oil and gas lobbyists.

          The Labour Party would likely borrow as much as than the Cons and distribute this to the many not the tax dodging multi nationals.

          This party would be led by Corbyn for a while and passed to younger leadership over time .

          The Labour Party would support the expansion of renewable energy generation so that only a small amount of fossil fuel is used, create more jobs than the fossil fuel industry and spend less on energy due to the reducing costs of green technology. They could, by their support of non-climate destroying energy generation aka gas aka fossil fuels, literally save the world!

          Above all, Labour will be a democratic party, where people have opposing views, talk about it, resolve the issues and move forward.

          No human is perfect; this we would call a god.

          Those who have others at the centre of their leadership will always succeed over those who only have their own self interest at heart.

          • Exactly Corbyn would Destroy the U.K

            There is more chance of you sher realising the U.K is going to enter a golden age of shale gas..

            At what point will you admit you are wrong?

            • It seems you are afraid of the truth Kishy, your fear shows in your rhetoric; I understand your pain at the thought of losing the life you have known a loved for so long, but nothing is forever in this world, sometimes you need to accept the change and move on.

              Am not sure what you mean by the last phrase; it would appear that the rights and wrongs of shale will become apparent, as you say, in weeks. In months things will change rapidly and in years the judgement will begin.

              Right and wrong are only tools to cause conflict. Judgement is based on opinion that causes pain to one and obscene joy to another.

              The world is not made up of right and wrong, it is made of choices.

  7. Ian-if you are such a specialist on Ponzi schemes suggest you take a look at Mr. Musk. Now that really is alternative! Burning through $1 billion per quarter, and under all sorts of legal and financial scrutiny. Share price dropping like a stone. Seems there are many alternative ways for investors to lose money. What is the financial situation currently regarding the Swansea Lagoon promotors?

    Is this the same Europe that agreed to purchase more gas and oil from USA, derived from shale? Maybe they would like to buy some from UK as well? (The country that will need to export more after Brexit.)

    Interesting you left out ECONOMICAL from your list! If you do that it is understandable, because based upon your other comments it is more than an Achilles heal! Just one day after a report came out stating how many in the UK were desperately worried about energy bills this winter and would be cutting back on their heating to be able to meet the bills, even though they realised it could damage their health.

    Little bit of research required for Sherwulfe on the realities of fixed term parliaments? Or, stick to the fictional unicorn approach. I think the answer to that is pretty certain. A poor but educational attempt to suggest better times are just around the corner, when that corner is a long way off and may just be a mirage. Mind you, it is the same approach used by thousands of football supporters every year as their club teeters on relegation. Hope versus despair. Unfortunately, the reality is that false hope applies to those who look for such comfort.

  8. Yes, you should spend your time laughing (or yawning, or snoring), Sherwulfe. It will fill the void of you posting anything of substance. If anyone doubts that, scroll back up through this particular subject.

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