￼04 September 2013, News Wires – Greenpeace has erected a mock drilling rig outside Lancashire County Council chambers in protest over Cuadrilla Resources’ shale exploration activities in northeast England.
Around ten campaigners dressed as workers from hydraulic fracturing contractor Frack & Go staged the demonstration in Preston.
Their protest coincides with a meeting by the council’s development control committee, which is responsible for deciding on Cuadrilla Resources’ application to hydraulically fracture its Grange Hill well in the area.
The group has written to members of the committee urging them to reject the explorer’s plans.
Campaigner Liz Stanton said that “Cuadrilla is proposing to invade precious parts of Lancashire with trucks, drills, flares and chemicals”.
“Most experts agree ‘fracking’ in the UK will make little or no difference to people’s energy bills, yet it risks industrialising swathes of Lancashire countryside, and has been associated with water contamination, earth tremors and reduced house prices,” she said.
Stanton said the council’s decision on the application was a test case for hydraulic fracturing around the UK.
“This isn’t just an issue for Lancashire – fracking is a huge concern nationally and Lancashire councillors should understand that their decision has national significance. If they give Cuadrilla the green light that will be seen as paving the way for ‘fracking’ across the UK,” she said.
If approved, the plans would see the UK onshore-focused explorer conduct the first hydraulic fracturing in the region since a moratorium was placed on the technique in May 2011.
The ban, lifted in late 2012, came after a pair of seismic events that a subsequent study said was “highly probable” to have been caused by hydraulic fracturing operations on the Preese Hall 1 well.
In May, a study by the British Geological Survey hiked the in-place reserves in the Bowland-Hodder shale to as much as 1329 trillion cubic feet.