Two days before the royal wedding, the government produced a ministerial statement which aims to make exploratory fracking 'permitted development'. This would mean that fracking well sites for exploratory drilling would be treated as the same as a garden shed or a conservatory by the planning system, and would not require planning permission from local councils.
This is nothing less than an assault on local democracy on an unprecedented scale and would result in local communities left without a voice about whether their countryside should be fracked. Even Kevin Hollinrake, the pro-fracking MP for the Thirsk and Malton constituency, has serious concerns about this plan -and so does everyone else who cares about local democracy.
And it gets worse. The government is also planning to make fracking a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project, which would mean that full scale production would also avoid the local planning process and be decided by central government and their friends in the oil and gas industry.
This 'nuclear option' shows that the Conservative government have realised that they are never going to win the argument on fracking, and have given up trying to get 'social licence' for this unwanted, unsafe and unnecessary industry. Rather than put their support behind renewables, they seem intent on forcing fracking on unwilling communities, and at the same time ignoring the huge weight of evidence of the harm this industry causes, and their own climate change commitments. Click on the banner at the top of the page to find out more.
Click here to find out why the government thinks that an exploratory fracking well pad is the same as a garden shed.
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At the Barclays AGM Chairman John McFarlane said they still want to sell in-the-red fracking company Third Energy. More on Drill or Drop.
Even Kevin Hollinrake supported a 500m setback distance from people’s homes – but the industry still aren’t happy. Read more here.
Please download and sign the Frack Free Declaration and tell the Government to halt all fracking in the UK.
To find out why Third Energy never managed to frack at Kirby Misperton, check out this Yorkshire Post article.
Click here to read the letter written in solidarity with the National Trust, who are being taken to court by INEOS.
Find out why the Wildlife Trusts in the UK are standing against shale gas production in this Drill or Drop article.
Another suppressed government report, with this one suggesting that fracking may not be viable. Find out more in the Yorkshire Post.
After Third Energy’s retreat from KM8, residents celebrated the re-opening of the footpath. Find out more here.