FRACK FREE RYEDALE PRESS RELEASE 15/05/2017
BARCLAYS PULL OUT OF THIRD ENERGY
Last week at their AGM, Barclays’ Chairman John McFarlane told a packed hall of their shareholders that the bank would be pulling their money out of Third Energy – the company they own the majority of and that is licensed to frack at Kirby Misperton in Ryedale, North Yorkshire. Reports suggest that this could be happening within 2 months. This could be massive news for residents of Ryedale and the anti-fracking movement.
Over the last two years campaigners have been protesting outside Barclays branches across the UK and the pressure from campaigners and now politicians from across the country has been building on investors and shareholders to divest from the fracking industry.
Ryedale resident and FFR campaigner Monica Gripaios attended the Barclays AGM to hand in a huge petition organised by Friends of the Earth and Sum of Us, and it was her question to Chairman John McFarlane that prompted him to announce the plans in front the shareholders in a packed hall.
Monica said after the meeting: “After coming to the AGM for three year running, I was so delighted to hear the chairman say the bank are planning to divest from this area. I hope they will follow through on the promise and this is not an empty commitment. I certainly feel reassured and hope that I don’t have to go back next year”.
Steve Mason of Frack Free Ryedale said: “This is amazing news! Clearly fracking is a bad investment environmentally, socially and financially, with the majority of political parties in England are now opposed to fracking, I think potential investors should take heed. Where is the long term future of this industry? Why would you put money into an industry that is increasingly rejected by communities and could get banned at anytime? I wouldn’t want my investments relying on election results! Especially after what has happened in recent years”.
Frank Colenso ,a resident of Ryedale, added: “It is great to hear that Corporate Business Managers are catching up with main stream thinking on climate change.” Frank went onto say “We hear today that Barclays Bank are moving their investments in shale gas with Third Energy. This will be great news for the residents of Ryedale. However, the North Yorkshire County Planners need to have a rethink regarding a bond if Third Energy finally go ahead. With a net worth in excess of minus £50m, who now is going to pay the bill if anything goes wrong? We will continue oppose all fracking of any kind in Ryedale, North Yorkshire and the UK to protect health, the landscape, tourism and the community”.
Third Energy are part of what Barclays refer to as “non-core” activities. Note the statement that “The good news is that Non-Core closure is now less than two months away.” The Barclays Statement can be found here.