Watching fracking wheeze carefully

York Press: Prime Minister David Cameron looks on  during a tour of the IGas shale drilling plant oil depot near Gainsborough, Lincolnshire. On Monday, French oil giant Total announced it will become the first major oil company to explore for shale gas in Britain Prime Minister David Cameron looks on during a tour of the IGas shale drilling plant oil depot near Gainsborough, Lincolnshire. On Monday, French oil giant Total announced it will become the first major oil company to explore for shale gas in Britain

DAVID CAMERON’S latest wheeze is to allow councils to retain 100 per cent of the rates for allowing fracking operations in their area (The Press, January 14).

We will have to watch carefully how City of York Council reacts to this latest “bribe” from central Government as they have form in this area.

For example, the overcooked housing targets in the Draft Local Plan have clearly been influenced by the Government’s introduction of the New Homes Bonus, which pays councils a sweetener for every house built in their area.

Will fracking be another case where the people of York are caught between a Tory Government bent on economic development at any costs and an empire-building Labour council leader?

David Farnsworth, Old Orchard, Haxby, York.

 

• THIS year is all going to be about fracking. The Government has made its mind up that fracking is a wonderful thing that will cure all the country’s problems. The EU is rightly telling the Government to be more cautious.

Tax incentives have been given to the fracking companies; now the companies want to bribe local councils to allow them to go ahead. One of the conditions the fracking companies will impose on councils is a confidentiality clause, as they have done in America.

Once the fracking companies get the go-ahead, there will be no turning back. Once they start, it will be too late to say you are poisoning our land, or drinking water, the air we breathe.

Coun James Alexander is right to stop and think about accepting the money offered to the council.

York and surrounding councils should consult with their citizens in a form of referendum after the facts for and against fracking are put to them.

The benefits from fracking sound good until you look at the downside experienced in America.

When the fracking companies have gone, the people of this country will be left to clean up and live with any problems left behind.

Chris Mangham, Lindsey Avenue, Acomb, York.

 

• COULD I suggest that Julian Cole’s regular Thursday column be rechristened “Julian’s anti-Tory rant”.

The latest subject on which to castigate at least the Tory part of the Coalition is the emotive subject of fracking, an issue that has largely cross-party support, to proceed only after full consultation and safeguards.

Yet here we have Julian once again berating his favourite target “Call me Dave” Cameron who has replaced “Mrs Hacksaw” (Thatcher) as his bête noir.

There is nothing that Dave or the Tories will ever do that will satisfy Julian. I am sure he would prefer a situation where perhaps Government was shared permanently between Red Ed and his cohorts and the wishy-washy, all-things-to-all men, Liberal Democrats.

I remember one of his columns during the Blair years claiming that somehow things felt better or nicer under this regime. Perhaps I could remind Julian of the results of this “nice” period; illegal wars, pension fund disaster, unbridled expansion of the Welfare (Entitlement) State, gold reserve sell-off at the worst possible price, plummeting educational standards, uncontrolled immigration and financial ruin – the list is endless.

No doubt he will be cheering from the rafters in 2015 when it seems likely that we can revisit this “Nice” place on Red Ed’s election. Who’s for beer and sandwiches chaps?

Martin Smith, Main Street, Elvington, York.

 

• AT LAST the Prime Minister has encouraged fracking companies to start drilling for gas all over the country.

We have needed to get this natural gas from under the ground for a long time.

The company Total has confirmed it has taken a 40 per cent share in drilling to go ahead between Doncaster and Lincoln.

This will be good for the workforce, and it is estimated this could produce 74,000 jobs and more than £3 billion in income.

Councils where the drilling for shale gas takes place are in for a windfall. Hopefully, the leader of City of York Council will take heed of this.

Tom Mitchell, Mendip Close, Huntington, York.

 

• IT IS not very often that I agree with David Cameron but, as regards drilling for shale gas, I do agree.

The North needs jobs and wealth creation, and our entire nation needs more affordable energy and less reliance on foreign countries supplying our requirements. Fracking has worked well in America, and we have been fracking in the North Sea for many years without serious dangers.

I hope we can start this process quickly and reap the benefits soon.

David Quarrie, Lynden Way, Holgate, York.

Comments (6)

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12:40pm Sat 18 Jan 14

ColdAsChristmas says...

Too much red tape has put a halt for now from Fracking in Poland. It is therefore comforting that the PM has given the green flag to get going on much needed energy.
But where are all the British mining companies? This 'should' mean even more 'British jobs for British workers.' But still, this is more useful than investors being scammed into buying worthless carbon credits. (Or investing in fresh air, more to the point)
Too much red tape has put a halt for now from Fracking in Poland. It is therefore comforting that the PM has given the green flag to get going on much needed energy. But where are all the British mining companies? This 'should' mean even more 'British jobs for British workers.' But still, this is more useful than investors being scammed into buying worthless carbon credits. (Or investing in fresh air, more to the point) ColdAsChristmas

12:49pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Pinza-C55 says...

ColdAsChristmas wrote:
Too much red tape has put a halt for now from Fracking in Poland. It is therefore comforting that the PM has given the green flag to get going on much needed energy.
But where are all the British mining companies? This 'should' mean even more 'British jobs for British workers.' But still, this is more useful than investors being scammed into buying worthless carbon credits. (Or investing in fresh air, more to the point)
"British Mining Companies" probably don't exist any more? And really, when you think about how long Britain has been deindustrialised where are they going to find the workforce?
Job interview "So you want to be a Fracker son, what qualifications have you got?
"W-w-well I have a BA in Media Studies and I got through to the semi's on the X Factor".
[quote][p][bold]ColdAsChristmas[/bold] wrote: Too much red tape has put a halt for now from Fracking in Poland. It is therefore comforting that the PM has given the green flag to get going on much needed energy. But where are all the British mining companies? This 'should' mean even more 'British jobs for British workers.' But still, this is more useful than investors being scammed into buying worthless carbon credits. (Or investing in fresh air, more to the point)[/p][/quote]"British Mining Companies" probably don't exist any more? And really, when you think about how long Britain has been deindustrialised where are they going to find the workforce? Job interview "So you want to be a Fracker son, what qualifications have you got? "W-w-well I have a BA in Media Studies and I got through to the semi's on the X Factor". Pinza-C55

1:12pm Sat 18 Jan 14

ColdAsChristmas says...

Good point Pinza-C55, I had thought that a new company could be created, though buying in some experts. And then there is the now multinational BP.

When Tony Blair wanted 50% of children to go to University, they were not all going to be top engineers, geologists etc but the expansion in numbers had to be paid for = debt for all students. I can assure you that Mr Blair is in credit though.
Good point Pinza-C55, I had thought that a new company could be created, though buying in some experts. And then there is the now multinational BP. When Tony Blair wanted 50% of children to go to University, they were not all going to be top engineers, geologists etc but the expansion in numbers had to be paid for = debt for all students. I can assure you that Mr Blair is in credit though. ColdAsChristmas

2:27pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Pinza-C55 says...

ColdAsChristmas wrote:
Good point Pinza-C55, I had thought that a new company could be created, though buying in some experts. And then there is the now multinational BP.

When Tony Blair wanted 50% of children to go to University, they were not all going to be top engineers, geologists etc but the expansion in numbers had to be paid for = debt for all students. I can assure you that Mr Blair is in credit though.
There may well be a new company but I feel sure it will be a foreign company in the same way the new Hitachi train factory at Newton Aycliffe will be run (obviously) from Japan - and built with a £4 million "grant" from the government but the body shells will be assembled in Japan and shipped here. Why? Because the country which used to be the "Workshop of the world" no longer has the technology to long weld the shells!
[quote][p][bold]ColdAsChristmas[/bold] wrote: Good point Pinza-C55, I had thought that a new company could be created, though buying in some experts. And then there is the now multinational BP. When Tony Blair wanted 50% of children to go to University, they were not all going to be top engineers, geologists etc but the expansion in numbers had to be paid for = debt for all students. I can assure you that Mr Blair is in credit though.[/p][/quote]There may well be a new company but I feel sure it will be a foreign company in the same way the new Hitachi train factory at Newton Aycliffe will be run (obviously) from Japan - and built with a £4 million "grant" from the government but the body shells will be assembled in Japan and shipped here. Why? Because the country which used to be the "Workshop of the world" no longer has the technology to long weld the shells! Pinza-C55

7:01pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Tug job says...

If Quarrie supports it, it must be a bad idea
If Quarrie supports it, it must be a bad idea Tug job

10:56am Mon 20 Jan 14

York Fox says...

In the modern world, and without some pretty hefty anti-globalisation policies that would isolate Britain (complete withdrawal from Europe for example), the chances of any uccessful (or unsuccessful!) 'British' company remaining British is slim. Assuming that tax is applied correctly and fairly on UK profits it shouldn't really make a difference anyway. Unfortunately it is simply down to who took a punt and paid the most for the licenses. If it's not a British company then that's their own fault!

I should point out that mining companies wouldn't be much good at this anyway, it's gas, and there are plenty of British oil and gas companies and lots of experienced British oil and gas workers. Fracking is not that labour intensive though (part of its value).
In the modern world, and without some pretty hefty anti-globalisation policies that would isolate Britain (complete withdrawal from Europe for example), the chances of any uccessful (or unsuccessful!) 'British' company remaining British is slim. Assuming that tax is applied correctly and fairly on UK profits it shouldn't really make a difference anyway. Unfortunately it is simply down to who took a punt and paid the most for the licenses. If it's not a British company then that's their own fault! I should point out that mining companies wouldn't be much good at this anyway, it's gas, and there are plenty of British oil and gas companies and lots of experienced British oil and gas workers. Fracking is not that labour intensive though (part of its value). York Fox

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