No Fracking in Balcombe Society- PRESS RELEASE

‘How predictable that the government is trying to bury its announcements today on shale oil and gas under an avalanche of news about Nigel Farage and the Euro elections!  The report revealing billions of barrels of shale oil under the Weald was ready for release back in late winter – but could not be allowed to alienate the Tory heartlands before yesterday’s election. For the same reasons the government has also chosen today to details its plans to bribe local communities to allow the oil and gas industry to drill under their land.
‘We’e talking about an area stetching from Kent through Sussex and Surrey into Hampshire: rural, outstandingly beautiful, quite densely populated. We are talking about fracking. It’s the only way to extract shale oil. There would be flares burning off unwanted gas, pipelines, compressor stations, thousands of wells across the South East – we estimate that they would need 3,500 wells to get just 10% of the oil announced today. That would supply the UK’s oil needs for only 290 days!  
‘It’s increasingly clear from the experience in North America and Australia that fracking is a danger to the environment and public health, a source of serious air pollution as well as water pollution, and a huge dilemma in terms of waste disposal – large volumes of waste that is contaminated with radioactivity and heavy metals flushed out from the depths, as well as the original fracking chemicals.
‘Government and industry are wrong when they say that fracking in the UK would be well regulated. The regulations are weak, and were designed for off-shore. Monitoring is inadequate. The industry is allowed largely to self-monitor. We’ve seen that in Balcombe.
‘For us here in Balcombe, this fight has now gone way beyond the village. We’re in close contact with communities fighting fracking across the UK, including the potential gaslands of Lancashire, Yorkshire, Ireland, the West Country, and the former coal mining areas (Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire, Kent, Wales, Scotland…) who are also in line to become ‘unconventional’ gas fields. There are a lot of us, activists, campaigners, ordinary citizens up against a bullying government and industry. Imagine how many there will be once planning applications go in right around the country – two thirds of the country will soon be under licence.
‘Communities, people power, that’s who will win this battle. Our environment and our health are not for sale. They can keep their bribe money!
‘Our climate is not for sale either. The British government has committed us to be on our way out of fossil fuels by the time this ‘unconventional’ oil and gas would come on tap. This oil and gas must quite simply stay in the ground.
 ‘Latest opinion polls show that support for fracking is falling steadily in Britain and is now under 50%, despite government and industry propoganda.
‘The politicians who continue to mis-judge the country’s mood over fracking will be looking for jobs after the next election.’