Residents Action on Fylde Fracking

Tell Greg Clark to refuse fracking permission now

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As you’re probably aware, drilling commenced at the Preston New Road site on 17 August, but before fracking can start the Secretary of State for Energy, Greg Clark MP, must sign Cuadrilla’s fracking consent application. Friends of the Earth have telling created a petition, telling Greg Clark to refuse fracking permission now.

Together we’ve already stalled Cuadrilla’s plans and people power has kept the UK frack-free for six years. Now, the more people who write to Greg Clark and tell him that fracking must not take place, the more pressure he’ll be under to say no.

.Please sign the petition here.

Green Mondays, Preston New Road

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As part of the on-going protest campaign against fracking at Preston New Road, local people have organised ‘Green Mondays’, as a follow-on from the Rolling Resistance campaign which Reclaim The Power helped organise throughout July. This idea is now being promoted by various North West environmental groups, including the Green Party, Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth. At the same time, the national organisations are assisting by providing speakers for most of the ‘Green Mondays’ between now and the end of September. Natalie Bennett has attended, as have a number of Green councillors.

Monday 4 September: Amelia Womack (Deputy Leader) will be the main speaker on that day – and there is the possibility (not yet confirmed) that there will also be a national Greenpeace speaker.

4. Monday 18 September: Caroline Lucas, MP is confirmed as the main speaker for that day. One of the other speakers will be Stephen Hall – president of Greater Manchester Assoc. of TUs, & Chair of Unite the Union/GM Area Activists’ Cttee – who will be speaking about the One Million Climate Jobs campaign.

How to get there: For those using public transport, the nearest station is Kirkham & Wesham: from there, cross over the road outside the station and catch the #61 bus, which takes about 15 minutes. There is a bus stop very close to the fracking site. Alternatively, you could take a bike and cycle from Kirkham-and-Wesham station, which also takes about 15 minutes.

For those coming by car, the best route for getting there is as follows: Come off the M55 @ Jnc 4, onto the A583, signed Preston/Kirkham. Free parking is available at: Maple Farm Nursery Garden, Moss House Lane (off Preston New Road), PR4 3PE – Tel: 01772- 685166. The farm is less than a 20-minute walk from the fracking site.

 

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What Are You Drinking Fylde?

55% of Water in Your Tap is from the Fracking Zone and 40% from Forest of Bowland

Thanks to Mike Hill for investigating the issue of Fylde’s water supply. Where does Fylde’s drinking water come from?

A reply from United Utilities reveals that a property in the middle of St Annes, Fylde gets 95% of its water from local boreholes, the River Wyre and Stocks Reservoir in Bowland. Only 5% is a mix of river and lake water from the Lake District. So 55% of all Fylde’s water in your taps comes directly from the Fylde – a potential fracking zone and a further 40% is from the greater fracking zone!

Mike Hill, together with local anti-fracking groups such as RAFF, have repeatedly drawn attention to the potential contamination of our drinking water by fracking activity. We have also repeatedly been accused of scaremongering and told it could never happen as our drinking water comes from the Lake District or other areas. Well here we have it from the horse’s mouth – 55% of water in your tap is from the fracking zone and 40% from the greater fracking zone, the Forest of Bowland.

 

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Women’s Peace Walk Every Wednesday, Preston New Road

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Ladies’ Peace Walk, Call For Calm, to PNR Fracking gates and 15 minutes silence- every Wednesday. This is proving to be a popular and very moving event as women call for calm and peace.

Please share the information round. Try to wear white if you can… as you can see from the photograph, it looks really effective when there is a lot of us together.

We meet at 9.30 a.m at Maple Farm and together we walk slowly up to the site. The police have been happy to facilitate this event and trust us because we are women standing united for peace. It’s a moving and safe action, and is a good one to take part in if you are new to anti-fracking and feeling uncertain about taking part in an action outside the site gates.

How to get there: For those using public transport, the nearest station is Kirkham & Wesham: from there, cross over the road outside the station and catch the #61 bus, which takes about 15 minutes. There is a bus stop very close to the fracking site. Alternatively, you could take a bike and cycle from Kirkham-and-Wesham station, which also takes about 15 minutes.

For those coming by car, the best route for getting there is as follows: Come off the M55 @ Jnc 4, onto the A583, signed Preston/Kirkham. Free parking is available at: Maple Farm Nursery Garden, Moss House Lane (off Preston New Road), PR4 3PE – Tel: 01772- 685166. The farm is less than a 20-minute walk from the fracking site.

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‘GREEN MONDAYS’ AT FRACKING SITE

Members of environmental movements across the North West are joining forces today to keep up peaceful pressure on both the shale gas industry and the government by bringing in more people to stand in protest at Cuadrilla’s fracking site at Preston New Road in Lancashire.

Former Green Party leader, Natalie Bennett, who will today speak at the launch of ‘Green Mondays’, said:
“I’m disappointed to be having to make my third visit to the Preston New Road site. The public of Lancashire, indeed the UK public, have made it very clear that they do not want fracking. Lancashire County Council said no, the protectors on site, working day and night for months in the face of aggressive policing, have said fracking must not happen here, yet still Cuadrilla is throwing its shareholders money into a project that doesn’t have community consent.”

Liz Stanton of Greenpeace Preston said:
“Greenpeace are joining with other anti-fracking groups to try and stop Cuadrilla from fracking Lancashire. It has not brought employment to Lancashire, it won’t bring our energy prices down, but it will damage our environment. We need to look to the future and make sure our energy is clean. Renewable, clean energy has brought jobs to the northwest, it makes energy more affordable and its clean!”

Dot Kelk of Friends of the Earth – Central Lancashire, UK said:
“Fracking – the unconventional and risky extraction of shale gas and oil – poses a serious threat to our world’s climate, and to local environments and communities. Catastrophic and abrupt climate change is the biggest threat facing humanity, and extreme weather events are already having an impact in the UK and around the world. To avoid the worst impacts of global warming, the world needs to stop burning fossil fuels as fast as possible.”

Gina Dowding (Lancashire County Councillor) said:
“Our voices have not been listened to, so it’s now time to take action with our bodies. Being at the site demonstrates our strength of feeling against this toxic industry, and reminds the company and the Government that the community will not roll over.”

The ‘Green Mondays’ idea follows on from the month-long Rolling Resistance protests organised by Reclaim The Power throughout July. As a result of the protests which have been taking place since January – works at the site are currently five months behind schedule.

Natalie Bennett added:
“The Green Party has supported anti-fracking campaigns from the start, and the campaigns have been highly successful in preventing the start of an industry whose existence is indefensible on climate change, safety and wellbeing, and economic grounds. We, and the protectors, are also championing the alternatives – community-owned renewables and energy efficiency, which create business opportunities, jobs and energy security.”

First Green Monday organised for 14 August, 10.00 am – 4.00 pm

Organised by the North West Green Party, this is the first of a series of ‘Green Mondays’ for members of the Green Party and environmental groups such as Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace, who will join the ongoing protests against fracking at the Preston new Road site. This Monday (14/08) we will be joined by former Green Party Leader Natalie Bennett.

For those using public transport, the nearest station is Kirkham-and-Wesham: from there, cross over the road outside the station and catch the #61 bus, which takes about 15 minutes. There is a bus stop very close to the fracking site. Alternatively, you could take a bike and cycle from Kirkham-and-Wesham station, which also takes about 15 minutes.

For those coming by car, the best route for getting there is as follows: Come off the M55 @ Jnc 4, onto the A583, signed Preston/Kirkham. Free parking is available at: Maple Farm Nursery Garden, Moss House Lane (off Preston New Road), PR4 3PE – Tel: 01772- 685166. The farm is less than a 20-minute walk from the fracking site.

You can go to the gates directly or meet at the Preston New Road Community Action Hub at Maple Farm (see above) at 10.00 am, from where we can walk up to the site together. The Hub will provide hot drinks, food, information, etc.

Shell and Exxon face censure over claim gas was ‘cleanest fossil fuel’

Arthur Neslen, Monday 14 August 2017

The Dutch advertising watchdog will on Tuesday censure Shell and Exxon for claiming that natural gas was “the cleanest of all fossil fuels” in an advert earlier this year.It will be the second time this summer that the Netherlands advertising standards board has ruled against the fossil fuels industry, after it slapped down Statoil in June for calling gas a “clean energy” and “low emissions fuel”.

In a bid to pre-empt the latest ruling, online versions of the advert were changed a few weeks ago to redefine gas as “the least polluting fossil fuel”.

The Dutch watchdog waived punitive action against the NAM company, which is part-owned by Shell and Exxon, in that light.

Paul de Clerk of Friends of the Earth Europe, which co-filed the complaint with Milieudefensie, said: “This clear ruling by the advertisement standards board is of great importance. Time after time we see how oil and gas companies are misleading citizens and politicians.

“They want us to believe that gas is clean and they support the transition to renewable energy. Behind the screens we see how the same companies lobby against this transition. To prevent catastrophic climate change we need to end the dependency on all fossil fuels – including gas. ”

The issue is highly contentious, after a Trump administration push for gas to be described as a “clean technology” at a G20 summit in July split the meeting.

The US disassociated itself from the final communique, inserting text into the document saying that it would help countries “access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently.”

But gas is seen by many policy-makers as a “bridging fuel” to a renewable-powered future and the EU’s research wing has also described it as a low carbon energy source, making about £100m available for research grants on that basis.

Natural gas emits around half as much carbon dioxide as coal when burned, although this is still far more than from renewables.

But the picture is less clear when it includes methane – a short-lived but much more potent greenhouse gas – which one recent study found was being emitted by gas plants at levels up to 120 times higher than reported to US regulators.

The ruling by the Dutch Advertising Code Authority, which the Guardian has seen, found that “the absolute term ‘cleanest fossil fuel’ is not in line with the MRC [Dutch advertising code].”

“It is suggested that fossil fuels can be clean in that they do not cause environmental damage. It is firm – and recognised by NAM – that that suggestion is not correct.”

Antonetta van Beem, a spokeswoman for NAM, said her company’s decision to change the advert was not an admission that the original had been misleading.

Welcome Wednesdays at Preston New Road

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If you’ve ever wondered why ‘somebody’ hasn’t done something about fracking, it’s time to be that somebody . If you have a few hours to spare or can make a donation, we need YOU! If you have skills to share or tools you can use, there is always something to do. Our aim is for the Community Action Hub at Maple Farm to be a positive space for change where everyone is welcome. We want the space to be inclusive. Come and see us at the Welcome tent and get involved.

How to get there: For those using public transport, the nearest station is Kirkham & Wesham: from there, cross over the road outside the station and catch the #61 bus, which takes about 15 minutes. There is a bus stop very close to the fracking site. Alternatively, you could take a bike and cycle from Kirkham-and-Wesham station, which also takes about 15 minutes.

For those coming by car, the best route for getting there is as follows: Come off the M55 @ Jnc 4, onto the A583, signed Preston/Kirkham. Free parking is available at: Maple Farm Nursery Garden, Moss House Lane (off Preston New Road), PR4 3PE – Tel: 01772- 685166. The farm is less than a 20-minute walk from the fracking site.

The world’s largest frack pad takes shape

Preston New Road is set to become the world’s largest frack pad. Hundreds of wells are planned for the Fylde.

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Despite attempts by protectors to stop deliveries to the site, Cuadrilla has made progress on the rig this month.

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Photo: Ros Wills

 

Welcome to Frackpool Illuminations – the illuminated pad can be seen clearly from many Fylde villages now, as well as the M55 and surrounding area.

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Photo: Katrina Lawrie

 

There seems to be a problem with surface water. Where has it come from? Where is it draining to? What’s in the water?  Whatever is on the surface of the pad is being transferred to local roads by lorries leaving the pad.

 

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Photo: Ned Skywalk

November date for Preston New Road lock-on trial

Three local councillors were amongst 13 people who were involved in a lock-on protest at the gates of Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site in July. One person has accepted a caution; seven of the group appeared at Blackpool Magistrates Court this week charged with obstructing the highway and offences under the Trades Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act. All pleaded not guilty. The other five will appear at the court shortly.

The trial will begin on 13 November  and is expected to last all week.

 

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