Maria Eagle MP

FIGHTING FOR GARSTON AND HALEWOOD

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Questioning the Government’s Fracking Regulations

This morning, I and other Labour MPs voted against a Statutory Instrument that appears to allow fracking in national parks and other protected areas, despite Government assurances that they would outlaw this.

Fracking Stock

Click here to watch my speech

Or click here to watch the full video of the committee

This morning, I and other Labour MPs voted against a Statutory Instrument that appears to allow fracking in national parks and other protected areas, despite Government assurances that they would outlaw this.

The regulations, which came into force last December, were “prayed against” by Labour, meaning that there had to be a committee to consider them.

I am concerned that the definition of “High Volume Hydraulic Fracking” used by the Government leaves open the possibility of a plethora of wells, in protected areas, including our National Parks not meeting the minimum water volumes to fall within the protection.

Up to 45% of fracking taking place in the USA has been at these lower volumes of liquid used in the process. This leaves open the possibility that there could be huge numbers of well in protected areas which don’t meet the Government threshold for protection.

The Minister, Jesse Norman was shifty – he did not give the assurances sought and was so unconvincing that two Tory MPs on the Committee refused to vote for the regulations and abstained instead.

We lost the vote 8 – 5 and will now see if we can bring the matter to the floor of the House of Commons. One thing is sure, people who are concerned about the environmental impact of fracking will not believe the Government intend to meet their promises if any fracking is allowed to take place in these sensitive and valuable areas.

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