The UK’s next prime minister will be pro-fracking but only if local people want it.
Liz Truss had already suggested the current moratorium on fracking in England should be lifted and decisions left to local people.
Last night, her challenger, Rishi Sunak, said he also backed fracking with local support.
In the TalkTV/Sun leadership debate they were both asked: “fracking yes or no?”.
“Yes if local communities support it.”
They were not asked how local opinions would be measured.
The shale gas industry wants decisions to be taken out of local control and made by planning inspectors or ministers, rather than councillors.
The government is currently considering a review by the British Geological Survey (BGS)on scientific developments in fracking.
The review was commissioned by Kwasi Kwarteng, a Liz Truss supporter, after pressure to lift the moratorium in England.
This was imposed in November 2019 after ministers said it was not possible to predict accurately whether fracking would cause earthquakes and how big they would be.
Fracking by Cuadrilla near Blackpool in Lancashire had caused a series of small earthquakes, some of which were felt across the area.
Earlier this week, the energy minister, Greg Hands, said the government would publish the BGS review and decide on the next steps “in due course”.
The new Conservative leader and prime minister will be known by 5 September 2022, when the UK parliament returns after the summer recess.
Keep saying it, Pat. Otherwise they don’t, no, won’t, understand.
They might just understand that the silent majority does not always stay silent.
Maybe that is the concern?
Communities still say no. Given fracking will not lower energy costs/bills, remains unproven and any semblance of an industry many years away, it cannot possibly be considered a solution to the energy crisis. As before, fracking has been over promoted by those with vested interests and political ideologies. Very sad to mislead the public at a time of national crisis. But I have no doubt whatsoever that the falsehoods will fall like dominoes once the facts surface, which they will. It really is a case of Deja vu. We can all remember the days when fracking was sold to Mr Cameron as a game changer, when people were so taken in by fracking that a now convicted US fraudster, who had never fracked in his life, was invited to lecture Parliament, TV and printed media on fracking numerous times!
And now the industry and a few ideologically driven politicians have exploited the war in Ukraine and energy crisis to hijack the narrative and oversell fracking again. Another case of the Emperor’s new clothes.