YP Letters: The five great perils of fracking in Ryedale

Campaigners fear fracking will ruin Ryedale's countryside.
Campaigners fear fracking will ruin Ryedale's countryside.
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From: Sir Richard Storey, Settrington Grange; Nick and Kate Bentley, Bils & Rye; The Right Rev Bishop Cray; The Lord Downe, Wykeham Estate; The Hon Jake Duncombe, Duncombe Park; Benoit and Bridget Guerin, Low Northolme; The Hon Nicholas Howard, Castle Howard; Major Ian Kibble; The Lord Middleton, Birdsall Estate; Tony Porter; Mal and Jayne Potter, Helmsley Wines; Mark Preston; Stuart and Elizabeth Smith, The Vine House; Lord St Oswald, Nostell Priory; Dr Tim Thornton and Sir William Worsley, Hovingham Estate.

MINING gas, fracking, (millions of gallons of high pressure water fracturing shale 10,000 feet down), new to England, has not produced one molecule of gas.  This brutally invasive process, viciously disturbing countries worldwide, has five massively serious disadvantages that would industrialise Ryedale, eliminate its serenity, and devastate residents’ quiet enjoyment.

Huge numbers of heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) importing equipment, exporting contaminated waste – all polluting with noise, smell, roads’ and verges’ destruction – and endangering residents. 

Noise from drilling rigs, from powerful pumps forcing water down thousands of feet.

Long periods of flaring – burning and releasing untreated gas and noxious chemicals.

Methane emissions exacerbating global temperatures.

Rural Ryedale’s countryside ruined by many concreted well sites each equalling at least two professional football pitches containing 125 foot rigs, compressors, HGVs, Portakabins and dealing with millions of gallons of water.

The applicant seeking to frack at Kirby Misperton cannot identify friendly fracking anywhere in the world without all these damaging disadvantages. 

Kevin Hollinrake, Thirsk and Malton MP, studied fracking in the USA and proposes five safeguards:  inspectors’ independent supervision; a North Yorkshire County Council Local Plan; one mile between fracking and homes; drilling sites six miles apart; and all sites near an A road.

Unfortunately, none of these proposals can be introduced at Kirby Misperton.

English fracking regulations are not robust. The Environment Agency soon listed 14 permit condition breaches at West Newton’s conventional drilling, but did nothing. 

The English fracking site, Preese Hall, suffered fracking-induced earthquake damage, finding the regulators unprepared, wilfully ignoring foreign evidence, and failing to publicise results – only revealed under the Freedom of Information Act.

The meticulously researched Bristol University report found that “the system governing fracking [in England] is far from satisfactory” at present and that “the regulation governing fracking will continue to be inadequate”.

Regulations cannot protect Ryedale residents. This letter’s signatories now join the thousands, including at least 200 business people, who have already formally objected to fracking, custodians of Ryedale, who enjoy the values our forebears entrusted us, and who have conserved the beauty and structured today’s confidence in rural life. 

We owe our children the right to live in our inherited Ryedale’s balance of residential, agricultural, woodland, and ecological environment protected from fracking – especially so in view of the moratorium recommended by the House of Commons’s own Environmental Audit Inquiry.

Unsolicited mail solution

From: Roger Backhouse, Orchard Road, Upper Poppleton, York.

SORRY to hear of Sarah Todd’s unwanted requests from charities but there is a simple way to end a torrent of unsolicited mail (The Yorkshire Post, December 12). Cross through the address and write on “Gone away – address unknown – return to sender”. To be even more effective write “Deceased” instead of “Gone away” even if, as Mark Twain said, the rumour of your decease is much exagerrated.

Unwanted letters will eventually go back to the mailing company – few major charities do bulk mail themselves – and they will remove your details from their mailings. It takes time but is effective. No organisation will keep mailing a person who won’t respond.

The real problem is not mailings but the “chuggers” –charity muggers- who infest York’s and other main streets. Ever ready to accost passers by with a false mateyness they show early signs of wanting to become politicians. They don’t work for the charities on their tabards, but for agencies, who take a hefty cut from any standing orders set up by their salespeople. Regrettably legal powers available to local authorities do not allow “chuggers” to be barred.

It’s unfortunate that Government cuts have forced some charities to pick up the pieces increasing demands on their fundraising. Most charities do good work and deserve donations. Collectively we could give them more support them but I will not give to those using intrusive methods like “chugging”. The traditional flag day caused no problems to anyone!

Perspective on Mourinho

From: Terry Maunder, Kirkstall, Leeds.

THEY just never learn do they, the BBC ? They were roundly criticised for the blanket coverage of a Royal birth (unimportant to most of us) and events in Paris (very important but other things were happening in the world). Now a football manager has been sacked from a London football club and they’re doing it again: every time I put the news channel on there he is with a bunch of footballers in the background wandering around doing their “training”.

Let’s get some perspective: the only important thing here is how much compensation Jose Mourinho gets for failure, surely?