Tory MPs angrily defy Reese-Mogg’s fracking plan | cracking


Ministers face backlash from Tory MPs afterwards Breach of pledge statement Stop fracking until proven safety, then indicate that drilling can be enforced without local support.

Outlines a return to shale gas extraction in England after three years, Jacob Rees-Mogg He dismissed concerns about earthquakes caused by this practice as “hysteria”, claiming that this was often due to a lack of scientific understanding.


But while speaking in the House of Commons, the business and energy secretary was repeatedly confronted by Tory MPs, who asked how domestic support for fracking would be assessed and sought reassurance over Liz Truss’s pledge that this was necessary.

Reese-Mogg declined to be inferred, saying only that fracking companies would be urged to financially compensate people affected by shale gas drilling, a practice he said was “in the national interest”.

The Guardian has also learned that the Rees-Mogg . department crushing sites can be set As Nationally Important Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs), allowing them to bypass normal planning requirements.

Such a classification, which a government source confirmed is being considered, is typically used on projects such as roads and power generation systems. Applying it to fracking sites would anger many Tory MPs.

Mark Menzies, Conservative MP for Fylde in Lancashire, where fracking occurred before ministers halted the practice in 2019, told the Guardian that using the NSIP would clearly breach Truss’ promise during her campaign for the Tory leadership that drilling would only happen with local approval.

“IF BEIS [the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy] They are doing it, and they are doing it in the face of the clear commitments made by the Prime Minister – there is no stipulation or but, what she said is crystal clear,” Menzies said.

Let’s give her a chance to prove to the people of this country that she is a prime minister who does what she says she will do. Let’s hope we don’t get into the territory of people who feel like they’ve been told one thing and something else happened.”

Another Conservative MP in his constituency said the only way he could support it would be if the schemes were approved by local planners, with no possibility of overturning decisions.

“I will wait and see what the government will do,” the deputy said. “But I marked their card. I am not a fan of smashing, and I am not convinced at this point that it is safe to move forward.”

It presents another political risk to Truss, with continuous polling Show that hydraulic fracturing is not commonThere is scant evidence that England has enough accessible shale gas to make a noticeable impact on energy prices.

The governor’s 2019 statement pledged to temporarily halt hydraulic fracturing unless there is greater scientific certainty about its safety, particularly about seismic activity from drilling.

a British Geological Survey reportCommissioned by ministers and finally published this week, he said, it is still difficult to predict the frequency and magnitude of fracking earthquakes.

But in a notably combative appearance in the House of Commons, summoned by an urgent question from Labor after announcing the resumption of hydraulic fracturing in a press release, Reese-Mogg said opposing it was “pure an insult,” adding, in some cases, with funding from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

He said, “It is safe.” “Proven to be safe. Scary stories have been disproved over and over again. I think the hysteria about seismic activity fails to understand that the Richter scale is a logarithmic scale.”

Reese-Mogg said that the previous limit for fracking earthquake activity – with a magnitude of 0.5 – was very low, and that 2.5 earthquakes were a perfectly routine natural phenomenon globally.

Ed Miliband, Shadow Minister for Climate Change, called the plan an “earthquake charter”, and Reese-Mogg promised that Labor would “break that broken promise around their necks in every part of the country between now and the next general election.”

Business hopes to make Upcoming elections in West LancashireMotivated by the departure of Labor MP Rosie Cooper, a de facto referendum on hydraulic fracturing is being held, given that the constituency is another area where drilling can take place.

Exchanges in the House of Commons have revealed just how skeptical the Conservative Party is about the new policy, with a series of MPs lobbying Reese-Mogg on how and whether to measure domestic support.

Sir Greg Knight, a Conservative MP in East Yorkshire, another area with shale gas reserves, told Reese-Mogg that safety evidence for fracking simply does not exist: “Is he aware, that public safety is not a currency some of us choose to speculate? “

Menzies, a clearly enraged, responded to Reese-Mogg’s comments about opposing fracking by starting: “There is nothing to worry about about the people of Lancashire or Field.”

Mark Fletcher, Conservative MP for Bolsover in Derbyshire, has expressed concern about Reese-Mogg’s repeated argument that the locals concerned could be compensated by fracking companies.

“I listened intently to the Secretary of State, and I must say that the plans for domestic approval do not seem to be running out,” he said. “It seems to come down to communities being bought rather than voting.”

Ministers also expect to face significant resistance from campaign groups, and most likely protests and blockades, if they push ahead with their fracking schemes.

“There’s no cat chance in hell that people will accept fracking in their area,” said Tom Fiance, interim CEO of rural charity CPRE.

He said, “It is very unpopular and unsafe, which is why it was banned in the first place. That is why there is a real fear that the government will try to use the planning system to force the intrusion of unwilling communities. Doing so would be an astonishingly underappreciated attack on local democracy.” “.