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News - 29 July 2014

National Parks protected from fracking.

 The Government has unveiled the latest bidding process for shale companies seeking licences to explore for oil and gas.

 
The Government has committed to going “all out for shale”, claiming development of the gas and oil resource is needed to improve energy security, boost jobs and the economy and bring down energy prices.
 
But opponents say it causes disruption and damaging development in the countryside, can cause minor earthquakes and the risk of water pollution, and that exploiting new oil and gas resources is not compatible with tackling climate change.
 
Lavinia Newman, Founder of ABDS and a business strategist comments:
“Ministers have unveiled new guidance plans which mean applications for developments in National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and World Heritage Sites should be refused other than in “exceptional circumstances and in the public interest”. This will be welcomed by the National Park Authority who pressed the Government to exclude areas such as the New Forest from fracking.”
 
The Department of Energy and Climate Change said where an application in these areas is refused and the developer launches an appeal, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles will consider whether to make the final decision himself to ensure the policy is being properly applied.
 
Business and energy minister Matthew Hancock said: “Unlocking shale gas in Britain has the potential to provide us with greater energy security, jobs and growth.
“As one of the cleanest fossil fuels, shale gas can be a key part of the UK's answer to climate change and a bridge to a much greener future.”
 
But Greenpeace warned that the National Parks policy would not appease campaigners against fracking.
 
Louise Hutchins, Greenpeace UK energy campaigner, said: “Ministers waited until the parliamentary recess to make their move, no doubt aware of the political headache this will cause to MPs whose constituencies will be affected.”
 
Fracking involves drilling thousands of feet underground and then pumping in pressurised water and chemicals to crack the rocks below and release trapped pockets of gas. The controversial process has been blamed for causing mini-earthquakes in Lancashire.
 
For those who are looking for a more personal approach on a range of individual and business related issues, contact us at ABDS.
 
ABDS Chartered Certified Accountants of Southampton.
Tel: 023 8083 6900 E-mail: abds@netaccountants.net
 
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