Invisible Dust

London | Sunday 17 February
Pollution level: Moderate

Fracking will be allowed under national parks

South Downs National Park. Photograph: Slawek Staszczuk / Alamy/Alamy

The guardian have just reported that fracking companies will be allowed to drill horizontally under national parks and other protected areas, provided the wells start just outside their boundaries. The new series of weakened regulations were passed on 26 January. They also allow shale gas operations to go ahead without the need to notify residents, unless gas leaks of methane are recorded.

Energy and climate change minister Amber Rudd told MPs on Wednesday: “In the case of areas of outstanding natural beauty and national parks, given their size and dispersion, it might not be practical to guarantee that fracking will not take place under them in all cases without unduly constraining the industry.” Rudd also refused to define the meaning of “protected areas”, potentially leaving most ground water source protection zones without any protection at all.

Read the full guardian article here.


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