17 January 2011
A controversial new technique for drilling gas wells, which campaigners say has polluted water courses in America, is to be tried for the first time in Britain this month.
The technique, known as fracking (hydraulic fracturing) has already caused pollution in parts of the United States. There have been claims of contamination of water supplies, and New York State has already introduced a moratorium on gas exploration. The technique is featured in the documentary film 'Gasland' which has been released today (17th Jan), promoted by the Co-operative as part of its Toxic Fuels campaign.
Blackpool Green Party have called for a moratorium on drilling at the Bowland shales site near Blackpool. Chair of Blackpool Green Party, Philip Mitchell, said:
"In America there have been examples in which the well has had to be blown out and explosive liquid has spilled out onto the ground, which causes a fire hazard and pollution hazard," he said.
"The pollution has many different ways of getting into the ground, gas is dissolved in water and can find its way into the water course. There has been little interest at any level of government in public safety and the impact on the Lancashire countryside"
Philip has written to the Department for Energy and Climate Change asking that further licences should not be granted until concerns have been addressed.
See BBC coverage here Picture from BBC Lancashire website