Commenting on the arrival on the first shipment of ethane from fracked US shale gas to Scotland today, Friends of the Earth Scotland's Head of Campaigns, Mary Church, said:

“It is completely unacceptable to attempt to prop up the Grangemouth plant on the back of environmental destruction across the Atlantic. One of the companies supplying INEOS, Range Resources, has attracted record fines for environmental pollution in the US. To write this off, as Jim Ratcliffe has done, as like getting the odd puncture in your car, is cavalier. You can fix a puncture in a matter of minutes. It may never be possible to fix groundwater contamination from leaking fracking wells.

“Only today we have heard from the UK Climate Change Committee that global warming is already impacting Scotland, and that we should expect to see an increase in extreme weather events like last year's floods. To pursue a future for the INEOS plant based on the consumption of ever more fossil fuels is utterly irresponsible in the context of what we know about the devastating impacts of climate change. If Jim Ratcliffe was really concerned about the future of the Grangemouth plant and its workers he would be planning for its transition to a low carbon model.”

“We urge the Scottish Government to act swiftly to ban fracking and start planning seriously for a fair transition to a low carbon economy across all sectors. Fracking should not happen here in Scotland, and our country should not profit from it happening anywhere else.”

ENDS

Notes to Editors

 

1. Since 2012 INEOS has struck a number of long-term deals to secure imports of ethane from fracked US gas to its Scottish and Norwegian refineries, including 15 year contracts, with Range Resources, CONSOL Energy and Enterprise Products Partners to supply ethane, Sunoco Logistics for pipeline and terminal capacity, and Evergas to transport the gas across the Atlantic. http://www.ineos.com/sites/grangemouth/news/ineos-expands-its-contract-w… and http://www.ineos.com/news/shared-news/ineos-europe-ag-announces-a-new-ag…

2. On Range Resources see: 'The damaging history of fracking company supplying Scotland' http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/14763183.The_damaging_history_of_frac…

3. INEOS owner and chairman Jim Ratcliffe likened environmental pollution from fracking in the US to getting the occasional puncture in your car on BBC Good Morning Scotland today at around 2 hours 10 minutes in http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07vwzdm.

4. The UK Climate Change Committee issued its report on Climate Adaptation in Scotland today. Lord Krebs, Chairman of the Adaptation Sub-Committee of the Committee on Climate Change, said: “Climate change is already affecting Scotland. Average temperatures and sea-levels are rising, and rainfall totals are increasing. Further changes are inevitable in the coming decades.”
https://www.theccc.org.uk/2016/09/27/action-underway-to-prepare-for-clim…

5. The Scottish Government imposed a moratorium on shale gas fracking in January 2015. A programme of evidence gathering including a Public Health Impact Assessment and studies on climate, seismic, economic and transport impacts, has been undertaken. A public consultation is due in winter 2016/17, and a decision on whether to ban fracking or allow it to go ahead is anticipated in spring 2017. http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Business-Industry/Energy/onshoreoilandgas
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she is “highly skeptical” about fracking http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-35783026
6. Friends of the Earth Scotland is
* Scotland's leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 75 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups.
www.foe-scotland.org.uk