Comment: The Fracked North has Already been Written Off as ‘Desolate’, Don’t let it Become Dehydrated Too

Read time: 3 mins

By John Hobson, chair of campaign group Defend Lytham

This year we have experienced the longest heat wave since 1976, and we learned this weekend that the North West of England is heading for a hosepipe ban in a couple of weeks. We also discovered recently that Cuadrilla has applied for the final consent from BEIS to start fracking.

For those of us who have been looking into the impacts of fracking over the years, the timing is striking.

Fracking is an extremely water-intensive process. So Cuadrilla could be set to frack it’s first well while the rest of us are looking at our yellow lawns and dirty cars.

DeSmog UK’s Climate Year in Review

Read time: 9 mins
Science is not an alternative fact

From the endless stream of news surrounding Brexit and Trump to devastating extreme weather events across the globe, 2017 has been a monumental year.

So, as the final days of 2017 wrap up and everyone attempts to have a moment of brief relief before kicking off 2018, DeSmog UK takes a look back at the headlines and events that have streamed across everyone’s screens and impacted our everyday lives.

Looking Back Over the Year: 11 Faces of 2017

Read time: 9 mins
Trump and Theresa May

1. Theresa May

What a year the prime minister has had. An election she won but also basically lost, Brexit negotiations that she’s pretty much losing but claims she’ll ultimately win, and a climate action agenda that despite her recent strong words still seems pretty uncertain at best.

As May is keen to point out, on her watch the UK has reaffirmed a pledge to phase-out coal by 2025, the UK had a coal free day for the first time since the industrial revolution, and the government has made some positive noises about electric vehicles.

But at the same time, members of her party having been busy meeting with climate science deniers in the US, and continue to push disinformation about climate change in the national media. And that’s not to mention what Brexit could do to the UK’s environmental regulations.

Watchdog Calls for ‘Urgent’ Review of Police Tactics at Fracking Protests

Read time: 7 mins
Protesters behind Police van

A police watchdog has today called for two reviews into law enforcement tactics handling anti-fracking protests, in what has been described as “an authoritarian war” against the right to protest at a shale gas site in Lancashire.

In a new report, Netpol called for an “urgent” review into the national policy on policing anti-fracking protests as well as an external review to be done into the way police have conducted operations in Lancashire.

Information on Shale Gas Company Cuadrilla Resources and its Fracking Activities

Cuadrilla Resources has been trying to frack in Lancashire since 2011.

Cuadrilla Resources is a UK oil and gas exploration company. Founded in 2007, Cuadrilla has been working to exploit Britain’s shale gas resources.

The company is, as of March 2016, owned partly by Australian engineering firm AJ Lucas (45 percent), Anglo-American equity firm Riverstone LLC (45 percent) and the remaining 10 percent is owned by Cuadrilla management.

Read time: 2 mins

Fracking Company Cuadrilla Pushed Lancashire Council to Remove ‘Biased’ Community Group Chair

Read time: 7 mins
Cuadrilla protest sign in hedge

Shale gas company Cuadrilla asked Lancashire county council to help it remove the chair of a group set up to discuss the local community's concerns about its fracking site, DeSmog UK can reveal.

In an email exchange with the council, obtained by DeSmog UK through a freedom of information request, the company said it had “significant concerns” about how the group was being run, and asked the council to “support the appointment of a replacement chair”.

Drilling Begins at Cuadrilla’s Lancashire Shale Gas Site

Read time: 4 mins
UK fracking: drilling begins at Cuadrilla's Lancashire site

By Ruth Hayhurst at DrillorDrop.

The shale gas firm, Cuadrilla has confirmed that drilling began today at its site at near Blackpool.

The Preston New Road site at Little Plumpton will see the first horizontal shale gas exploration wells in the UK.

A spokesperson for the company said drilling began early this afternoon but was unable to give a precise time.

Shale Gas Company Backed by Cuadrilla Founder Wants to Frack West London

Read time: 5 mins
Shale gas company wants to frack West London

A new shale gas company backed by a former Cuadrilla founder has announced plans to explore for natural gas in a West London borough that has banned fracking.

In a release published quietly on their website in June, London Local Energy claim to believe that there may be a huge shale gas reserve below the site of the former White Heather Laundry in the Harlesden area, which it says could provide 12 percent of London’s natural gas demand.

The firm argues that locally sourced shale gas will be much less carbon intensive than exports currently shipped to the UK from countries like the US and Nigeria. They believe that environmentalists are undermining efforts to tackle climate change by stifling dialogue on fracking.

'Cuadrilla Were in My School Today' — Fracking Company's New PR Trick

Read time: 6 mins
Cuadrilla bib

As tensions continue to rise between Cuadrilla, police, and anti-fracking campaigners in Lancashire, Cuadrilla continues looking for ways to buy local people’s support.

One of its main targets for advertising? Young children.

Throughout Lancashire, shale gas company Cuadrilla is promoting its brand and putting its logo in front of hundreds of children through the sponsorship of sports clubs and school competitions.

Cuadrilla-sponsored sports teams pose a unique ethical dilemma as fracking has been linked to air pollution. A 2016 study found that young children and infants’ lungs, hearts and immune systems especially were at risk if they lived near a fracking site.

Fracking Progress Stalled as Protesters Step Up Action Against Shale Gas Company Cuadrilla in Lancashire

Read time: 3 mins
fracking protest

By Laura Creighton, reporting from Lancashire

Two lorries attempting to make their way in and out of shale gas company Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road fracking site have been stopped in their tracks by protesters.

Two men managed to jump on top of the lorries after several people ran in front of them to slow them down. The first lorry was stopped at around 12.30pm, with the second vehicle mounted a couple of hours later.

Protesters said they expected them to remain on the lorries “for several hours”, disrupting supplies to and from the site.


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