YP Letters: Current gas wells not on scale of fracking risk

Fracking protesters outside North Yorkshire County Council's offices.
Fracking protesters outside North Yorkshire County Council's offices.
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From; Josephine Downs, Highfield Terrace, Swinton, Malton.

JUST because 25 years ago no great damage occurred to the countryside and local tourism following construction of Knapton Generating Station is hardly a reason to claim that a new shale gas industry would, likewise have no marked effect (Lorraine Allanson, The Yorkshire Post, February 18). People in other countries who have experienced fracking recently can certainly vouch for its negative impacts.

I would not deny that 25 years ago Ryedale residents were concerned that ‘conventional’ gas (including sour gas) might have a detrimental effect on Ryedale’s countryside. As it turns out, no great quantities of ‘conventional’ gas were subsequently discovered in the Ryedale area, and therefore comparatively little infrastructure was needed to deal with it. There are currently only about six wells and these have had the benefit of 25 years growth of planting to hide them. The large number of fracking wells will have no such immediate screening (even though the industry ‘visualisation’ tries to suggest this).

When 84 per cent of peer- reviewed studies on the public health impact of fracking indicate risks, it is justifiable for communities to express disquiet.