A major new scientific study has concluded that the controversial gas extraction technique known as fracking poses a “significant” risk to human health and British wildlife, and that an EU-wide moratorium should be implemented until widespread regulatory reform is undertaken.
The damning report by the CHEM Trust, the British charity that investigates the harm chemicals cause humans and wildlife, highlights serious shortcomings in the UK’s regulatory regime, which the report says will only get worse as the Government makes further budget cuts.
It also warns of severe risks to human health if the new Conservative government tries to fast-track fracking of shale gas across the UK. The “scale of commercial fracking” unleashed by the Government’s eagerness to exploit the technique “should not be underestimated”, it cautions.
The report is due to be published tomorrow – in the week that Lancashire county council votes on two highly contentious planning applications to frack in the county by the company Cuadrilla. If approved, they will be the first commercial fracking sites in the UK.
Last week, council planning officers recommended approval of fracking at one site, Preston New Road, but opposed a second site, Roseacre Wood, based on traffic concerns, overweight lorries perchance? Amber Rudd would be proud.