Fracking is a real threat

Fracking is it worth it?
Fracking is it worth it?

Last month I sent the enclosed letter to all our six Burnley county councillors as well as Coun Azhar Ali, of Pendle, and Hyndburn’s Coun. Dad.

I might just as well have dropped them in a litter bin for all the response I’ve had (and I used first class stamps too!)

So I wonder if you could perhaps publish it as an open letter please?

Dear county councillors,

As fracking becomes more of a threat to this area, a local group “Keep East Lancashire Frack Free” (KELFF) has been formed to oppose it.

We have addressed local councils and had several stalls handing out leaflets. We are finding that although some people want “cheap gas”, more people are opposed to it. (Incidentally, minister have admitted that gas may be no cheaper). I have been asked to write to you stating our concerns.

On Friday, September 12th, the respected Radio 4 programme “You and Yours” broadcast an item about fracking and home insurance.

Already, some companies are considering refusing cover in fracked areas. Now this is very worrying for home insurance is very important. However, for most of their time on this planet, humans managed without it but they struggled to cope with polluted air and filthy water. So did many plants and creatures.

Fracking requires vast amounts of water to be pumped into the ground. No-one has been able to tell me what powers the pump and no-one will tell KELFF what chemicals will be in the water. It is a trade secret but toxic spills have occurred in the USA.

At least 10% of the concrete-lined wells fail, allowing this “water” into aquifers, polluting rivers and drinking water. Returned water will be taken away from the fracking well by tankers, causing congestion and emitting CO2.

Over in the Fylde, fracking caused earthquakes. In Burnley, the canal goes above the town centre along the Straight Mile and the railway goes along the viaduct. Not a good place to risk earthquakes! Underground, Lancashire is honeycombed with old coal-mining works. Who knows what fracking will do to them?

Most importantly, shale gas is not just some wonderful fairy dust that will supply clean fuel and masses of jobs. It is a fossil fuel emitting CO2 and there are more jobs to be had in developing green energy.

But on the same Friday, BBC1 reported that a salmon had been found swimming in the Calder at Burnley. This would have been impossible 50 years ago when the river was black, filthy and lifeless. Now there is a choice: sell out for “cheap gas” or continue improving our environment.

At KELFF, we hope you will give serious consideration and representation to our concerns.

Avril Hesson

KELFF