Saturday, 25 July 2015

Fracking and lobbying

There is a lot of politics around fracking:
Futures Forum: Fracking in Fort McMoney: a web documentary and strategy video game about Fort McMurray, the oil sands capital of Alberta, Canada
Futures Forum: "Public consistently backs solar over shale."
Futures Forum: The Infrastructure Bill, trespass law and fracking .... Parliament votes in favour
Futures Forum: How to interpret a study comparing fracking, solar power and wind turbines... “That makes it look like we are saying that solar panels are all around worse than shale gas, which... is not really what we’ve said. We are certainly not trying to say that shale gas is greener than renewables.”

And there is a lot of lobbying around fracking:
Fracking the Future - Gas Industry Lobbying Muscle
Is the Fracking Lobby Setting the EU Energy Agenda? | DeSmog UK
Green groups accuse EU shale gas panel of fracking lobby takeover | Environment | The Guardian

Just before the general election, the public interest investigator Spinwatch produced this piece:

Access all areas: Westminster's (vast) fracking lobby exposed

Wednesday, 29 April 2015 00:00By  and Andy Rowell

With the manifestos published and May's general election just a week away, fracking is looking politically toxic for candidates in communities threatened by drilling. Those in marginal seats could find themselves booted out if a recent ComRes survey proves right, with a third of people polled less likely to vote for pro-fracking politicians.

Access all areas: Westminster's (vast) fracking lobby exposed
UK Fracking Task Force calls for improved safety standards

There are ordinary people doing their own lobbying:

From HS2 and fracking to Heathrow's third runway, meet the new face of protest in the UK


Barbara Richardson, retired IT manager

It is Friday afternoon and Barbara Richardson is on her way home from speaking to her local MP. The 59-year-old retired IT manager has broken a self- imposed rule. “Friday is Frack-Free Friday,” she explains. “I always say I won’t go to any meetings – especially in the evenings – but I always end up doing it.”
In 2011, Mrs Richardson persuaded her husband to move from their  detached house on the outskirts of  Preston to a converted barn in the hamlet of Roseacre. She was after the quiet rural life. Then, in February last year, the energy company Cuadrilla announced plans to build a fracking facility 600 metres from the Richardsons’ house. Mrs Richardson found herself setting up, and then chairing, an awareness group. She now puts in 40-hour weeks on the campaign. “I was brought up a true blue Tory but this has made me question everything,” she says.
“I left my job because I was getting older and wanted to relax. So it’s surprised me how involved I’ve got in this. But it’s something I believe in so strongly. You just do everything you can.”
Last month, Lancashire County Council rejected Cuadrilla’s application to undertake exploratory drilling on the Roseacre site. But Cuadrilla has the option to appeal the decision or resubmit its plans. And is is pushing ahead with the installation of 91 seismic monitors in the area. Mrs Richardson says her fear is that drilling could yet happen 24 hours a day and that the site will resemble a high- security prison, lit up through the night. “And yet we’re not even allowed to put a satellite dish on the front of our house because it’s ‘out of keeping with the area’!”
Mrs Richardson and her fellow campaigners are waging war on a number of fronts – holding meetings, issuing newsletters, lobbying politicians and speaking to the media. Recently, somebody in a restaurant recognised her. “They said, ‘Oh, you’re that fracking lady, aren’t you?’ I was mortified!” They have also set up a Facebook account. “We’ve got a large following. But we don’t do Twitter. A woman in the group did try to get to grips with it, but we just don’t understand it.”
The hours may be long but when I ask if she would do it all again, Mrs Richardson answers unhesitatingly. “It’s made me open my eyes at the age of 59. I’m more aware about the environment, about democracy. It’s made me think, how do we get our energy in the future?”

From HS2 and fracking to Heathrow's third runway, meet the new face of protest in the UK - Home News - UK - The Independent

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