Hove MP criticises fracking protesters

Posted On 20 Aug 2013 at 5:07 pm

Mike Weatherley, the Conservative MP for Hove, has criticised “lifestyle protesters” for poisoning the debate about fracking.

More than a dozen people from Brighton and Hove have been arrested over the past few weeks along with more than 50 others as the protests against fracking company Cuadrilla have intensified.

Those arrested include the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion Caroline Lucas.

Cuadrilla said that it was trying to carry out test drilling for oil and would only seek permission for fracking – hydraulic fracturing – if it was not viable to extract oil from the area.

And if the company decided to start fracking for gas, it would need fresh permission to do so.

Mike Weatherley

Mike Weatherley

Mr Weatherley said that professional protesters, who relished altercations with the authorities, were obscuring the legitimate concerns of local residents.

He said that lifestyle protesters, the likes of whom regularly attended an array of protests throughout the county, had blindly galvanised support against fracking.

And they had cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of pounds in additional policing, he said, while dismissing any facts surrounding shale gas extraction.

As an opponent to new nuclear power stations, Mr Weatherley said that he was keen to ensure that a legitimate debate could take place on how we could keep the lights on in the future.

He said that he appreciated that local residents had concerns and wanted an open debate based on tangible evidence, not one tarnished by reports of fighting with police.

Mr Weatherley said: “Professional protestors from all walks of life have latched on to the anti-fracking cause without really assessing the evidence and have been exploiting local residents’ fears by perpetuating myths about the drilling.

“I fully support Sussex Police as they protect the exploratory site in Balcombe.

“Democracy, not criminal antics, must be allowed to take precedence.

“I personally would choose fracking over nuclear power but am keen to hear all of the arguments for and against the practice.

“I have actually been contacted by several constituents about fracking who have been strongly in support of it, simply because professional protesters are against it.

“The serial protesters are poisoning the debate.

“We need to hear all views if we are to take a mature decision.”

 

  1. alan tootill Reply

    It is incredibly arrogant for an MP to assume that people who are opposed to shale gas or any unconventional hydrocarbon extraction have not studied “the evidence”.

    The reason there are protests in Balcombe is precisely because the evidence from the US has been studied. The evidence of the UK scientific reports hgave been studied. The government’s response to those reports and refusal to accept the reports’ recommendations has been studied.

    The evidence is heavily stacked up against unconventionals. It is MPs like Weatherly who are “blind” to these truths.

  2. Valerie Paynter Reply

    Unnecessary and unhelpful reactionary intervention from my MP. What a shame. Just being mean instead of making a positive point.

    What does he gain by slagging off people who have a position they wish to defend and promote? He has positions he defends and promotes and does not appreciate venomous disdain. He’s capable of better than this.

  3. Valerie Paynter Reply

    I have to say this. My MP is abusing his position to bait protesters with inflammatory language and its not right! Indeed it is becoming something of a habit and its a terrible shame. His comments here will be seen by some protestors as slanderous.

  4. pachallis Reply

    @Valerie Paynter – Mike Weatherley is my MP as well as your MP and I happen to agree with his views about the eco-activists.

    If you don’t agree with his views then you can vote for someone else at the next elections. I’m very pleased he is sticking up for common sense.

    I have no sympathy for the non-peaceful protestors and I was very pleased to see Lucas arrested. Or do you think I am being slanderous as well?

  5. Valerie Paynter Reply

    Pachalis there is a mighty big difference between having an opinion and having an opinion that is attached to the responsibilities of high office.

    He just comes across as bitchy in this case without having anywhere to go with it. What is he proposing? A new law, maybe, to ban attendance at demonstrations if you have been to other demonstrations in the past? Come on! What is he ACHIEVING with these bar-room gossipy sneerings?

    He IS better than this and he is wasting his term in high office messing about like this.

  6. Young Baron Reply

    Mike doesn’t like ‘travellers’ very much, so that makes him alright by me.

  7. Concerned Resident Reply

    @Valerie Paynter – and is it slanderous that you are suggesting Mike Weatherley will propose a new law on demonstrations?

    IMHO he is expressing an opinion that some people (including me, and excluding you) agree with and that he “wanted an open debate based on tangible evidence”.

    Groups such as No Dash for Gas, and No Fracking …, Greenpeace and the Greens (left & right) seem to have decided the argument already – not only “No Fracking” but also “No Carbon” as well with no real plan to migrate to sustainable – or are you going to accuse me of being slanderous for suggesting this too?

    Yes – let’s have an open, peaceful, reasoned, non-emotional debate on the issue.

    BTW – are you also saying that there weren’t any “professional protesters” involved?

  8. pachallis Reply

    @alan tootill – and isn’t it equally arrogant of you to have your own web site http://www.frackingtheuk.co.uk/ publicising your own book, and assuming that you know everything about fracking? Similarly isn’t it arrogant to have convinced yourself that fracking is wrong and therefore that everyone who questions this must be wrong?

    I saw the 5 reviews of you kindle book on Amazon – 4 were in favour, but 1 said “This book is a poorly -informed ,heavily biased tirade against fracking, useful to get a perspective on the attitudes of the anti’s ,but beware of expecting a cool, critical analysis-It just isn’t there.”.

  9. Clive Reply

    In Cuadrilla’s own words:

    http://www.cuadrillaresources.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Geomechanical-Study-of-Bowland-Shale-Seismicity_02-11-11.pdf

    page 52, first bullet under ‘Objectives and Conclusions’

    Apart from the earthquake (and with that, water pollution) possibilities, the worst of this is that even if fracking delivers the goods in terms of useable gas, it will only delay the moment when we have to look to some other form of energy: i.e. renewables. Why not think long term and put the investment into this now?

    Protesters can’t win. If they are local they are derided as ‘nimbys’. If they aren’t they are ‘professional protesters’. Weatherley gives the impression that he’d rather everyone sat quietly behind their chintz curtains and did what they’re told. As Val says, he ought to be more respectful, and then he might find people would be more likely to respect him.

  10. pachallis Reply

    @Clive – the problem is that cost effective forms of sustainable alternative energy sources aren’t there yet. The UK already has a gigantic wind farm program and lots of houses and buildings have solar panels all producing electircity. Many vehicles are now available in electric only (short range only) or hybrid, but even these need gigantic subsidies to make them cost effective for users. Apparently hydrogen (electrolised from water) looks a good long term source for vehicle usage, but that is still in development, and you need a cheap source of electricity for this (perhaps solar/wind/nuclear).

    Until then carbon and hydrocarbon based fuels offer a good long range solution for vehicles. In Brighton the bus company has some hybrid vehicles but they have stopped buying more as they need someone to subsidise the cost.

    There is also the question of what energy sources are suitable for cloudy days when the wind drops. Perhaps store water in valleys and then release for hydro-electric power? Perhaps nuclear is the right way for “on demand” sources. Who wants a nuclear power plant near them (now really watch out for nimbys!)?

    IMHO the “stop all carbon now” protestors are living in “cloud cuckoo land” and as well as migrating to newer, sustainable, sources, we need to ensure we have energy sources to keep us going in the interim.

    What the Greens, Greenpeace, No Fracking and No Dash for Gas are missing is a workable, cost effective, proposal for migrating to sustainable. Now if these groups could produce something akin to the German scheme for the UK then perhaps they would be viewed more seriously.

    IMHO they do just look like “professional protestors” saying “no to fracking” but with no realistic alternative. Go on – do something positive rather than whinging!

    P.S. I made sure I put “IMHO” everywhere I could in this to stop Valerie threatening to sue me for having an opinion.

  11. Pingback: UK: Hove MP criticises fracking protesters « ShaleMarkets.com – Oil and Gas (O&G) Shale Supply Chain

  12. Clive Reply

    @ pachallis yes, there is are certainly issues about sustainable energy’s readiness to step up to the plate just yet, though I’m not sure that your description of UK wind power programme as ‘gigantic’ is accurate, certainly compared to other countries. And it doesn’t alter my fundamental point – that fracking, long term, cannot be the answer. Yet the government are happy to let local objectors put a stop to wind farms, but fracking must be allowed. ‘Democracy, not criminal antics, must be allowed to take precedence’, says Mike, without a trace of pomposity or humbug.

    Talking, as Weatherley does, of ‘poisoning the debate’ (not the water though, no siree), there is a piece in Private Eye this week about Tory MP Dan Byles all-party group on fracking, which he has touted as being framed to cut through ‘rhetoric and hyperbole on both sides’. Since it was formed in February, this group has taken money from, among others Cuadrilla, the petrochemical giant INEOS, and the UK Onshore Operators Group – the trade body. Their secretariat is being provided free of charge by Edelman, the lobbying firm that represents Cuadrilla. How very cosy!

  13. pachallis Reply

    @Clive – trouble is the eco-activists seem to be saying we should stop all carbon based uaage now and invest ni wind and solar and we are just not ready yet. I agree that fracking is not a long term (whatever is meant by “long term”) answer but it can give us breathing space to use an allegedly lower polluting fuel whilst the new solutions are developed.

    And talking about back-handers, who do you realistically expect to be helping fund a debate into fracking? An energy company or (as an example) a beverages company? I agree it looks dubious, but in business in general isn’t this quite normal and an accepted part of lobbying? I don’t know but I’m not an expert on how government works.

    Why don’t those against fracking provide financial support as well to the committee, rather than just whinging? Why didn’t Caroline Lucas get herself on the committee?

    Similarly, did any of the anti-fracking groups fund the Balcombe protests?

    @Valerie – are you alright with my comments or do you think I should be sued?

  14. sally singer Reply

    This man is talking utter nonsense…It is transparent that he is the one who has not studied the data….and by that I don’t mean the manipulated information put out by MSM…I mean looking at things like the ‘Halliburton Loophole’which highlights why there have been no reports of contamination in the states…..Oil & Gas Industry were made exempt from disclosure by Dick Cheney – looking at things like the 4 new technologies used in fracking NOW…not in the past and to research the that there have not been 200 Wells fracked in this country using the methods used now!

  15. Jaybe Reply

    I have spent two weekends at Balcombe and I have never participated in protest about anything before this.Has there at any point been any chance for the public to debate this? I think not as our government have told us time and again that they are going to push this through and no regulation should stand in its way while at the same time telling us that they have the most rigorous regulations in the world in place, which is the same line that every government in the world have already told their people where fracking is happening. Only yesterday I was stopped in my local post office by a lady whose home has cracks in the walls following Cuadrilla’s fracking at the Preese Hall site near Blackpool, she is among many others who have reported similar happening to their homes at the time of drilling only to be fobbed off with the usual lines of ‘how long ago did you last have a structural survey’? That could be down to subsidence or your home could have been in disrepair! There are people in the gas fields in Tara Queensland Australia and People in Pennsylvania US all with the same terrible health symptoms. Do you wonder at all why those people receiving shipped in water in the US have been forced to sign disclosure’s and indeed why doctors have also been gagged? The industries own documentation Shlumberger etc states that 6% of all wells fail immediately and that all of them fail over a period of time, then all that toxic water finds a path. Flaring also pollutes the air with noxious gases from the chemicals and the methane pumped into it.Just this week we see that the government are to close down air pollution monitoring stations across the country, some 600 of them! This industry is massively energy intensive, it is not just about the fracking but of the masses of heavy traffic that is part of it bringing equipment, chemicals, silica sand and water.The machinery needed on site to complete 1 frack operation using millions of litres of diesel, the millions of litres of water and chemicals. When these wells go into full production they deplete at a rapid rate and so the reason that so many wells need to be fracked. Is it right that debate should only come after these wells have been fracked? Gas Compressor stations will also have to be built in between the pads and miles of pipe lines constructed. Hindsight may be too late for many people and future generations will be left with the headache how to get out of the mess that we put them into if they can fix it at all! We will not meet our carbon emissions and the costs to our road infrastructure, emergency services, police and national health service etc will be enormous, who do you think will pay for all that? What the media have reported is not how it is on the ground at Balcombe and if you take from the kitchen you leave donations, many also leave tins of food and all manner of other food, tea, coffee etc. We have exhausted all options writing to MP’s MEP’s filling in countless petitions etc and to date our voices have been ignored.

  16. pachallis Reply

    @sally singer – perhaps you are the ones talking utter nonsense and quoting situations in other countries that may (or may not) be applicable to the UK because?

    I suggest you have a look at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-23794663 where one group “Transition Dorking” has apparently looked at all the information and decided that they are in favour of exploration and fracking.

    @Jaybe – so a lady in a post office told you she had cracks in her house that were caused by fracking! I think you’ll find that it might well have been something else or her house could have had cracks all the time. Just because she spotted a crack does not automatically mean it was caused by fracking – this is not “fobbing off” – it is just IMHO anti-frackers grasping at straws to back up their arguments.

    And everywhere where nothing is reported is because they were “gagged”? Have you heard of conspiracy theorists?

    There was another person on The Argus comments stating that their entire family got food poisoning and they were going to sue Cuadrilla because fracking had poisoned their water supply. IMHO only 3 problems firstly it might have been something else that their family had all eaten; secondly it appears the problem was not reported to any authority to investigate the cause; and thirdly Cuadrilla have not done any fracking.

    Perhaps they didn’t talk to the authorities because they too were frightened of being “fobbed off”?

    IMHO the rest of your diatribe is just typical anti-fracking qualitative scare-mongering. Please can you provide a sources to your various claims – i.e. the millions of litres of diesel required to complete 1 “frack operation” (whatever that is?).

    I couldn’t be bothered to analyse all your claims but the one in Tara was, I believe, where several residents had “strange symptoms and other headaches in Tara and they have been wondering whether it wasn’t from leaking methane”. Nothing was ever proven – probably because the leakage was quite low, and methane isn’t poisonous – it’s just inflammable. So IMHO this is yet more anti-fracking propaganda.

    And why don’t we have a full public debate – 2 reasons – firstly because that is what we elect governments and councils for – so we don’t have to have a referendum on every topic – and secondly because it only encourages (IMHO) those who don’t or won’t understand all the aspects to come up with all manner of reasons why something should not happen.

  17. Julka Reply

    @pachallis. I hope you don’t live in or near one of these areas in the south (Southwater, billingshurst, adversane, Washington, West Chiltington, Singleton, Bolney) else it will be on your doorstep next and it will be you breathing toxic air and not being able to turn on the tap and use the water without worrying what you are putting into your body. Never mind the infratstucture in West Sussex which cannot cope with exploration of this magnitude. We are not the States and shouldn’t be compared to a country with such a large land mass. Regardless of it coming to these places soon, there is ample evidence on the net regarding the dangers of fracking. It’s a pure myth that it will reduce energy bills. Perhaps you’d like to look up Cuadrilla’s success rate. Do some proper research and then perhaps someone will have a reasonable debate with you!

  18. Janel Reply

    I too have spent a good amount of time at the Balcombe protest site. We have a small business in Sussex and when able three generations of my family give their support in person. There seems no middle ground here. You either believe you will be unaffected by the fracking process or have gathered as must information as possible on the subject and choose to make a personal stand against the risks There are non so blind …….just one last suggestion, should fracking be coming to your area I advise you to check with your insurance company if your cover is adequate. The residence of Balcombe have been advised to photograph their properties before Caudrilla started their drilling. Villagers have been quoted a building insurance cost to rise 37%. .

  19. Janel Reply

    At a recent vIllage meeting in Balcombe. we were informed that since Caudrilla have been in Balcombe they have changed their business name three times. I suspect it would be very difficult to hold them accountable for anything .

  20. Sarah Chalk Reply

    Mr Weatherley should have the decency to refrain from making derogratory remarks about protestors, especially as some of those are his constituents. Does he really think that with this attitude he will be relected again? I for one, hope that any of Mr Weatherley’s constituents see him for what is is, a spiteful snob !

  21. Satch Reply

    Mr Weatherly is completely out of touch with reality – and I guarantee that he has not been anywhere near the Balcombe protest camp to meet some of the wonderful people he so arrogantly labels as “lifestyle protesters”. It’s the tory government that need to wake up – they have been and still are guilty of complete misinformation about the realities of the dangers of fracking. I suggest Mr Weatherly puts his mind in gear and does some proper research into the dreadful state of pollution on fracked sites in the USA and Australia, and I suggest he gets of his high-horse and actually gets out to meet the people of Balcombe, some 80% of whom are against this drilling!

  22. Hazel d Reply

    With reference to the bbc article above, i would suggest those wishing to quote transition dorking are fully aware of their spokesperson, nick wright’s, employment as a petroleum geologist it’s on LinkedIn for those who want to check http://www.linkedin.com/pub/nick-wright/8/8/15?_mSplash=1

  23. Valerie Paynter Reply

    What have Balcombe and protesting there got to do with being MP for Hove? And looking out for Hove interests and issues? No. connection. Sadly, this comment from our MP is another example of publicity for its own sake. His office issues a LOT of Press Releases to keep his name in the news. But its almost always about just giving an opinion and not about what he is doing for Hove. Mistake (IMHO!).

  24. pachallis Reply

    @Hazel d – so who do you think is suitable for analysing fracking and the benefits and dangers? How about a green MP who believes in homeopathy? Or a fashion designer from the 70s? Or the daughter of a pop star from the early 80s?

    What do you think about No Dash for Gas spokesperson being a Guardian reporter and the Guardian always supporting the anti-fracking stance?

    I’d, personally, put my money on someone who is involved in the industry and might well know what they are talking about…

  25. pachallis Reply

    @Valerie Paynter – so the MP from Hove is not, according to you, supposed to get involved in debates on fracking because he is MP for Hove.

    What do you think about Caroline Lucas being the independent MP (well she is the only green MP) for Brighton Pavilion and taking part in the anti-fracking demonstrations? Or her getting involved in feminist; international; and drug related topics at Westminster?

    I’d say Mike has just as much right to get involved in this, as you have as being leader of Save Hove and commenting on this? Should you go back to only commenting on articles that directly effect planning applications in Hove?

  26. pachallis Reply

    @satch – so Mike has an open mind and wants to hear arguments from both sides – what is wrong with that?

    So you seem to have a closed mind and have definitely decided fracking is wrong and do not want anyone else to discuss the matter?

    I prefer someone with an open mind to discuss subjects…

    BTW – what scientifically validated facts do you have to backup up your claims of the dangers of fracking?

    And I thought the poll in Balcombe was now 40% in favour 40% against – not 80% against?

  27. pachallis Reply

    @Julka – sorry I didn’t respond earlier. Please can you elaborate on the toxic air and poisonous chemicals in water supplies that result from fracking?

    The only air pollutants, AFAIK, are methane (which is inflammable but not poisonous and the major component of natural gas), and possibly some carbon dioxide (which is not poisonous either) if flaring takes place.

    What are the poisonous chemicals in drinking water that you talk of? In the UK, the chemicals used in fracking fluid have to be published openly and AFAIK are not poisonous.

    Personally I would have no problems with fracking taking place close to where I live. There is a gas power station near to me and a biofuel power station about to be built (although opposed by the Greens). Both of these, according to eco-activist, are pumping poisonous chemicals into the atmosphere.

    I have tried to have a sceptical view of both sides of the arguments and IMHO the anti-frackers are, in general, just scare-mongering and have not even tried to understand what is happening with fracking in the UK versus other countries.

    Of course, as I’ve commented above, most of the anti-frackers don’t want to discuss anything. To them, Cuadrilla and the UK government are evil and in collusion to “pull the wool” over the eyes of everyone and they are only interested in making money.

    Perhaps you are the one who needs to do some proper research, rather than repeating the same unjustified claims time and time again.

  28. pachallis Reply

    @Janel – “The residence of Balcombe have been advised to photograph their properties before Caudrilla started their drilling” – definitely worth doing – then if there is any subsidence, or tremors, causing building damage as a result of fracking then you’ll have good evidence to support any claims.

    “Villagers have been quoted a building insurance cost to rise 37%” – do you know what the cause of this was? Did the insured say their houses were now susceptible to subsidence? Was it all building insurance for everyone or was it just a few? Have they tried switching to a different insurer?

  29. Educator Reply

    Just reading through the comments here. UNCONVENTIONAL exploration of gas and oil is a new industry to the UK and we all have a right to know how well protected we are against any accidents and incidents. I would suggest you ask yourselves these questions:

    Why did it take Friends of the Earth to point out that a Radioactive Waste Permit was needed (currently being applied for)? Why didn’t the Environment Agency or Cuadrilla Balcombe Ltd have this in place to start with? Are all the operatives at The Lower Stumble Hydrocarbon site qualified in handling radioactive waste? Are these qualifications accredited to a University Examination Board or are they a ‘self regulated’ qualification by the gas / oil industry? Within the planning applications for Balcombe, is there a ‘Strategic Emergency Response Plan’ to ensure when incidents or accidents happen all emergency services know how to react? If there is one, was it agreed by all emergency authorities? Is the site at Lower Stumble a full impermeable site? Has the cementation of the well casing been pressure tested and independently verified by a third party? Was Southern Water approached to give a ‘Consultant Response’ on the planning application? Did the information submitted by Southern Water include the depth of the aquifer including seasonal / flood depths? The company test drilling at Balcombe is called Cuadrilla Balcombe Ltd, not Cuadrilla Resources Ltd. Where does the issue of Corporate Responsibility and Limited Liability lie? What happens when something goes wrong now or years after the company has left the site if the cement casing to the well cracks and leaks NORMs / hazardous waste etc into the ground? Is it statutory for local councils to receive an up front payment (Bond) to cover any initial clear-up operations when incidents and accidents occur so they don’t have to wait for insurance claim pay-outs?

    If anyone wants scientific facts, google ‘Professor David Smythe’ (including (a) the English Summary of German Academic Report, which is a report funded by ExxonMobile and (b) the geologists report from the University of Montpellier), ‘The Endocrine Disruption Exchange (TEDX)’, ‘The Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP)’, ‘Physicians, Scientists, and Engineers for Healthy Energy (PSE)’ and the peer reviewed documents, ‘New York Times article by Professor Anthony R Ingraffea’, ‘Venting and leaking of methane from shale gas development: response to Cathles et al.’ (peer reviewed document), ‘Why oil Wells Leak by onepetro.org’, ‘The International Energy Agency Golden Rules for a Golden Age of Gas’ and check if these rules have been implemented by ANY unconventional onshore gas / oil company.

    It’s up to the DECC, Councils, the Environment Agency and the Health and Safety Executive to protect us and the environment. They each have a responsibility to monitor and regulate what happens with unconventional onshore gas / oil exploration and extraction. Can you can find the above questions are answered to your satisfaction?

    I have yet to find any evidence that confirms the gas / oil industry is working to a high enough standard… conventional / unconventional, offshore / onshore. All the evidence I have read (including Government documents, House of Commons Library Briefing papers, reports presented to the Government etc) state regulations should be put in place to ‘limit’ or ‘reduce’ accidents and incident… not to totally prevent them. Recommendations have not been implemented.

    I am not scaremongering, educate yourselves, ask questions, find out the answers. It’s irrelevant if you are pro or anti… what’s relevant is that you and your loved ones are SAFE.

  30. pachallis Reply

    @Educator – you pose a lot of questions – but why don’t you provide answers? Leading people to assume the worst sounds like scaremongering to me!

    Why don’t you provide a list of your answers to the questions?

    You seem to have done a lot of research into the standards of the gas/oil industry. What do you see as the level the industry should be working? How does this compare to other industries?

    Are you Emeritus Professor David Smythe?

  31. Educator Reply

    Firstly I am not a professor I am just a local resident who decided to do some research into this.

    If I posted up the answers, it would defeat the object of people educating themselves and coming to their own conclusions.

    On the whole, most people are finding the issue of unconventional onshore gas / oil exploration and extraction confusing. It is only confusing if you rely on the media, because that will give snippets of information bulked out with opinion which leans towards the political stance of the newspaper. That’s the same with all reporting.

    I have offered you and any other readers plenty of ideas to start finding out for yourselves. I have stated that I cannot find any evidence to say the gas / oil industry IS working to a high standard, that which is recommended by the International Energy Agency and the Royal Society or Royal Academy of Engineering.

    There are plenty of independent bodies in the USA now collating scientific evidence. In the USA, the onshore gas / oil industry is exempt from 7 statutes including the clean air act, the clean water act, the clean drinking water act. This has meant collating evidence from the US gas / oil industry does not HAVE to be done. However the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) does have lots of evidence relating to toxic waste spills and leaks by the sub-contractors.

    I re-iterate, educate yourselves and come to your own conclusions.

  32. pachallis Reply

    @Educator – sorry – it is up to you to explain you concerns about “fracking” to your audience rather than expect everyone to read all the web sites articles to find out the problems for ourselves. I assume you never had a job in marketing.

    I don’t have time to read all the web sites you list, but I thought perhaps I’d try a few just in case.

    So starting with “The Endocrine Disruption Exchange (TEDX)” – seems to relate to a lot of chemicals that could be Endocrine Disruptors. No idea what this is about or it’s validity to fracking – please explain? What is Endocrine Disruption? Do I need to be worried?

    Next “The Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP)” – web site for residents to get information on air and water safety. Seems main concern is about methane in water supplied which is inflammable but not poisonous. Mainly of issue to this who take water from their own wells, Unclear whether this relates to methane caused by natural sources or fracking. Is this an issue on the UK – how many people draw their drinking water from their own wells?

    “Physicians, Scientists, and Engineers for Healthy Energy (PSE)” one recent report is “Modern Natural Gas Development and Harm to Health: The Need for Proactive Public Health Policies”.

    So it says that health should be monitored in case there are any side effects – I agree this is an excellent proposal – doesn’t this happen anyway in the UK?

    AFAIK the potential danger from the fracking liquids does not seem to apply in the UK as the fracking liquid components have to be published.

    It then goes on to explain the dangers of methane released into the atmosphere – the same potential dangers as methane from natural gas from under the sea, or from decay of organic material.

    At this point I lost interest – you just pointing to web sites and expecting readers to find what you want me to find is IMHO doomed. You might have read into these sites different concerns to what I found.

    IMHO these are typical sites that anti-frackers would highlight and they don’t convince me that the concerns apply to the UK if it is suitably regulated and monitored.

    Just because the US might have made some mistakes with implementing fracking doesn’t mean the same issues will occur here. Can’t we learn from other’s mistakes?

    Rereading your loaded questions again points to a typical conspiracy theorist approach? Asking questions that imply wrong doing – yes – you are scaremongering. There may well be very simple answers to the questions but you want to make people think “CONSPIRACY”!

    Going back to the original article – it stated that Mike Weatherley wanted wants to hear arguments from both sides. Your posting does not offer any arguments. Please provide some.

  33. Educator Reply

    Accidents, incidents, spillages, leaks etc from ANY gas / oil well, unconventional or conventional are a reality. History has already proved that, over and over again.

    You have pointed out that the websites I have directed you to are ‘typical sites that anti-frackers would highlight’. From that remark perhaps you are not interested in peer reviewed documents, scientific and medical professionals talking about the hazards of unconventional onshore gas / oil exploration and extraction.

    If you are unwilling to educate yourself, so be it.

  34. pachallis Reply

    @Educator – you are right – I am NOT interested in learning everything about oil/gas exploration – that is what experts are for. Lot’s of people talking about potential hazards and scaremongering is not my interest – lot’s of people looking after the interests of the UK whilst minimising risks and ensuring safety is much more important.

  35. Educator Reply

    Yet the experts I have pointed you towards are not worth taking notice of? Perhaps the experts hired by the gas / oil industry are the only ones we should take notice of?

    So far I have heard that (a) you don’t want to educate yourself (b) experts are there to educate you (c) experts who are not telling you how safe the gas / oil industry is are not worth taking notice of (d) you are interested in knowing that safety is ensured and risk is minimised (e) you have no interest in finding out if and how that is being done.

    There is no point communicating with you.

  36. pachallis Reply

    @Educator – You posted loaded questions and refused to provide answers – implying conspiracy.

    I didn’t ask to be “educated” in the way you demand. I don’t want to be “educated” in the way you demand (i.e. becoming paranoid that the oil/gas industry are out to destroy the planet and mistrusting everything anyone says).

    I expected you to do some educating by answering the questions that you have posted – but you won’t do that.

    I wonder if anyone else following your comments believes they have been “educated”? Please respond if you do.

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