The government’s decision to overturn Lancashire County Council and to allow shale gas exploitation, otherwise known as fracking, should worry everyone in North Oxfordshire.
We know that Cherwell has long been on a list of areas seen by the government as ripe for exactly what we are about to see in Lancashire. With this case now out of the way, we could be next.
The industry may argue that fracking offers greater energy security and less reliance on imported fossil fuels; often from despotic regimes.
But my worry is that even if this is true; at what cost?
The evidence that fracking is responsible for earthquakes may be scarce, but there is plenty of evidence that it contaminates local water supplies and pollutes the air. Fracking is therefore bad for the environment because of the damage it does to local eco-systems and wildlife.
But worse than that, fracking is a risk to peoples’ health. The compounds released by fracking have been linked to very serious health problems such as cancer, birth defects and neurological diseases. That’s without mentioning the impact of hundreds of extra HGVs on our area’s roads.
I call on our MP Victoria Prentis to get some answers from government about whether we are next.
Story from 2013 on fracking coming to Oxon
Story from today on fracking in Lancashire