Adur, West & East Worthing Party including East Arun

Bearder backs fracking fight

Plans to continue extracting natural gas from shale from sites in the South East of England using the “fracking” technique were today criticised by local MEP.

The Government has given the go-ahead to allow a controversial drilling method to extract Natural Gas from Shale, as long as tighter controls are also introduced. After a Government-appointed panel highlighted the potential for seismic activity, but believed an seismic activity will be too minor to cause any structural damage.

Hydraulic fracturing known as “fracking” involves pumping water and chemicals into rock at high pressure to extract Natural Gas. The process sparked seismic activity in Blackpool in 2011.

Residents living near Balcombe, in West Sussex, wrote to their local Liberal Democrat MEP Catherine Bearer following concerns over plans to drill in their local area.

Catherine believed the risks are too great to allow drilling to continue and responded by saying: “It is clear we must invest in uncovering new forms of energy, but is it sensible to pursue a method which triggers earthquakes? But that’s not the only negative: the fracking process uses a lot of water – not exactly something we can afford in the current climate. There is a raft of clean, green, sustainable and, importantly, safe forms of energy supply and we should invest our time in making them even more affordable. Let’s not waste time with fracking.”

The Department of Energy and Climate Change is expected to publish a set of regulations following a six-week consultation period ending on 25 May. To respond to the consultation visit the Department of energy and Climate Change below: