30 January 2015

Fracking Ban in Important Countryside Areas Welcomed

CPRE Kent has welcomed the government’s commitment that there should be a ban on fracking in national parks, sites of special scientific interest and areas of outstanding national beauty.

Richard Knox-Johnston, Vice President of CPRE Kent said “We are very pleased that the government has pledged to protect important landscapes under threat of industrialisation due to fracking. This would have had a devastating and irreversible impact on our countryside, so we are pleased these beautiful areas will be preserved,”

Evidence was submitted to the committee last month that fracking could damage the aquifer which supplies one million people with drinking water. The gas and oil deposits in East Kent are less than 600-700m below the aquifer, the Chalk of the North Downs. There is also a risk that geological faults in the area would be re-activated, allowing gases and fracking fluids to leak into the chalk and so contaminate the water supply.

“We also have serious doubts about the effective regulation of the operation, which would require 24-hour on-site monitoring by competent, independent inspectors. We question how this would be achieved when the regulatory bodies are already insufficiently staffed and facing further cuts.”

For more information visit the CPRE website at http://protectkent.org.uk/news