Commenting on the news that the UK Government plan to go ahead with legislation to remove people's rights to stop fracking underneath their homes, Friends of the Earth Scotland Head of Campaigns Mary Church said:

“It is absolutely outrageous that the UK Government has ignored over 99% of responses to this consultation, and the stated objection of the Scottish Government, that the removal of people's rights to object to fracking underneath their homes is simply unacceptable. This is literally legislating for the 1%.

“Cameron and Osborne's blinkered dash for gas risks putting the UK on course for climate catastrophe and endangers the health and wellbeing of communities across central and southern Scotland.

“We urge the Scottish Government and Parliament to use existing powers to ensure this legislation cannot take effect in Scotland.”

 

Notes to Editors

 

1 The UK Government's announcement is at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-to-remove-barriers-to-onsh… and analysis of consultation responses is at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/underground-drilling-access

2 The Scottish Government's response to the announcement is at http://news.scotland.gov.uk/News/Scottish-householders-rights-to-object-…

3 Our comment on the Scottish Government's response to UK Government underground drilling access consultation http://foe-scotland.org.uk/node/1869

4. DECC launched the 14th onshore oil and gas licensing round on 28th July 2014 in which 20,000 square km in Scotland are offered to tender for shale gas fracking and other hydrocarbon exploitation, FoE’s reaction is here: http://www.foe-scotland.org.uk/offered-central-belt-fracking

5. Thousands of people in Scotland are currently opposing plans for coalbed methane extraction in their communities, an industry that has very similar impacts to shale gas fracking, and can often involve the use of fracking. Dart Energy’s proposal for commercial coalbed methane extraction at Airth remains the most advanced onshore unconventional gas project in the UK. The soonest the Department for Planning and Environmental Appeals is expected to make a decision is October.

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, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups.