IN less than one month, North Yorkshire County Council’s planning committee will decide on the first application in the UK to frack for gas at Kirby Misperton since the earthquakes in Lancashire four years ago.
I can only hope that everyone is aware of what is potentially about to be unleashed upon the entire region.
The application is being described as a test frack, but one that comes with up to nine years production.
Other sites around the country are already being described as ‘exploration’ sites.
The reality is, and what the companies and the Government do not want you to know, is that exploration will inevitably lead to full production, which will have a devastating industrialisation impact upon the region, owing to the sheer numbers of fracking wells required.
The technological limitations of extracting gas from shale by fracking mean that hundreds then thousands of wells will be needed, each taking around 90 days to drill, so if the precedent is set by granting permission for the exploration well, the consequences of full scale production must be understood.
The companies do have a medium/long term plan, but has anyone been made aware of that, other than those who will profit from it?
The rhetoric around ‘we need the gas to heat our homes’ has somewhat changed, too. It is now stated as ‘for homes and business’. The business referred to is that of the chemical industry, a significant player being Ineos, which now holds numerous exploration licences in North Yorkshire.
If our MP, Kevin Hollinrake, has had meetings in Westminster with the ‘industry’ to determine what fracking would look like in his constituency, is it not about time he shared that information with his constituents before it is too late?
Go easy on Cameron
From: BJ Cussons, Curly Hill, Ilkley.
JAYNE Dowle, who has written so many excellent columns, has sunk to the level of the increasing number of journalists and newspapers who waste time on personal criticism of politicians (The Yorkshire Post, March 28).
I wonder if a fraction of them give as much of their working life to their job as David Cameron does to his? No one person can do everything. Despite reservations on some decisions, I would take a bet that Mr Cameron has done, and is doing, more for our country than any other leader does for theirs.
Get real Jayne. The man needs a break. Not only do we expect him to deal with our own problems but the millions of people who are deserting their own countries because their leaders are truly incompetent
Our weather disasters are terrible for those who have suffered them but they cannot be dealt with all at once and huge efforts are being made from many directions. Don’t undermine a Prime Minister who is doing all that is humanly possible under impossible circumstances.
Brexit won’t end trade
From: Nick Martinek, Briarlyn Road, Huddersfield.
SIR John Major claims that a free trade deal with the EU is “self-deception”, “disingenuous”, a “delusion” and even a “fantasy”.
His hyperbole is both absurd and hysterical. Our biggest trading partner in the EU is Germany. Trade statistics show that in 2015 Germany exported £69.65bn to the UK, well over twice UK exports to them at £29.84bn.
Even allowing for German GDP at £2.36 trillion, and UK GDP £1.81 trillion, that still means Germany sold 79 per cent more pro rata to the UK than we sold to them.
Does Sir John really think that Germany is going to stand by whilst their valuable export trade to the UK just disappears? Of course not. Common sense will prevail and we will get a trade deal (or deals), which is what the Leave campaigns have been saying all along.
From: D M Loxley, Hartoft, Pickering.
WE have heard much about the effect of the 2016 Budget on industry and personal taxation. Nothing much has been said about the parlous condition of the UK economy.
In the 11 years, 2005 to 2016, our National Debt has risen from £0.5 trillion to £1.53 trillion, an average annual increase of 10.7 per cent. GDP has risen from £1.316 trillion to £1.735 trillion, an average annual increase of 2.5 per cent.
Is anyone concerned?
The joys of a happy ending
From: David T Craggs, Shafton Gate, Rotherham.
IT was both interesting and encouraging to read that JK Rowling had a recent story rejected by publishers (The Yorkshire Post, March 26).
It does indeed give hope to all we aspiring writers. A rejection letter is always disheartening, but what is far more so is the knowledge that a publisher or agent hasn’t even bothered to open your work and read the first line.
As I’ve often said to those who ask about my latest efforts, writing a few thousand words is the easy bit. The hard bit comes when we try to get them published. At least we can now get our efforts into the public domain through websites.