Kent Green Party warns of a possible “fracking frenzy” in the county following confirmation that the British Geological Survey is “conducting a review of the shale oil and shale gas resource potential of the Weald area on behalf of the Department of Energy and Climate Change”(1) and that Kent County Council is processing 3 planning applications for exploratory drilling in the east of the county(2).
Party spokesperson, Ian Driver, said: “The planning applications for exploratory drilling and the British Geological Survey review of gas and oil resources in the Weald are very worrying developments. If significant gas reserves are located then companies such as Midmar Energy, IGas and Cuadrilla, who already hold Department of Energy and Climate Change exploration licences, will descend upon some of the most beautiful parts of Kent to begin a fracking frenzy.
“Apart from destroying picturesque landscape, growing evidence demonstrates that fracking pollutes water supplies, causes earthquakes and releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere”.
“Kent Green Party opposes fracking. We will work closely with campaign groups across the county to try to stop this dangerous method of gas extraction. Green Party members are already part of the Balcombe anti-fracking protest, where Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas, was recently arrested whilst protesting peacefully.”
“The Green Party calls for a moratorium on shale gas extraction until a full and definitive environmental impact assessment has been carried out. Instead of depending on fossil fuels, we propose major investments in developing new renewable energy sources such as tidal and wave power, concentrated solar power, bio-energy carbon capture and storage, electric transport, energy storage and dynamic demand technologies and the overall reduction in energy consumption through improved energy efficiencies(3).
(1)Text of e-mail from BGS
Dear Councillor Driver,
BGS is currently conducting a geological review of the shale oil and shale gas resource potential of the Weald area on behalf of the Department of Energy and Climate Change. We are not conducting any CBM investigations in that area. Work has only just started, and will take many months yet. DECC will publish the report when it is finished, probably some time next year. I understand that Thanet is beyond the area of study.
Phil Richards Manager, Hydrocarbons,British Geological Survey,Murchison House,West Mains Rd,Edinburgh, EH9 3LA
(2) Minutes of Kent County Council Planning Meeting The Head of Planning Applications Group also informed the Committee of the receipt of three (so far not validated) planning applications for exploratory boreholes in East Kent. To curtail any rumours to the contrary, she stressed that these were not applications for fracking and agreed to inform all Members of the Committee once the validation was complete and the consultation period had begun.
(3) Green Party Energy Policy http://policy.greenparty.org.uk/en