Letter: Concerns over potential fracking risks

Fracking will become a massive problem if it is allowed to go ahead.
Fracking will become a massive problem if it is allowed to go ahead.

Re letter in The Scarborough News, Thursday, July 6:

There is no correlation between the re-election of particular Tory MPs and the acceptance of fracking for shale gas by the public. People vote for a political party for many reasons.

Fracking was hardly mentioned nationally in the General Election campaign, but it will become a massive problem if it is allowed to go ahead.

Who are these “eco-extremists from London”? The anti-fracking groups in North and East Yorkshire and further afield are made up of local people who are deeply concerned about the damage that fracking would do to our country.

Many people do not realise how bad the problems of fracking would be, if fracking goes ahead the process of gas extraction would need huge numbers of wells to be drilled to make the process economically viable. There would also need to be associated pipelines, storage and processing plants around the wells. The 2015 DEFRA draft report stated “Shale gas may transform a previously pristine and quiet natural region, bringing increased industrialisation.”

Fracking would also require enormous numbers of heavy goods vehicle movements, bringing in equipment, and the sand and chemicals needed for the operation of the wells as well as the removal of contaminated water.

The “bright new shale gas sector” does not exist; fracking will damage our communities. There is now a vast body of scientific evidence highlighting the risks and harms of fracking to human and animal health, the environment and climate. Reports from around the world have shown water contamination and air pollution in fracking areas. Fracking would damage tourism and agriculture and property prices could fall.

Methane has been proven to leak from fracking wells. It is a more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide and combined with the carbon dioxide produced when the gas is burnt, means that using shale gas as a fuel impacts climate change as much as burning coal.

Supporters of fracking say that in the UK we would have a strong regulatory framework and that fracking could be done safely, but given all the possible risks do we want our countryside to be a huge experiment? The answer is no. Fracking has been banned in many countries including Scotland, Wales, France, Holland, Germany and parts of the USA and Australia.

It is time for a moratorium on all fracking operations.

Steven Milner

Spring Lane