Industry’s ‘disappointment’ on fracking

Protesters outside the Fracking meeting at County Hall in Preston

Protesters outside the Fracking meeting at County Hall in Preston

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Britain’s No.1 manufacturing exporter – the chemical industry – has reacted to the decision of Lancashire County Council to refuse permission for shale gas extraction.

Steve Elliott, chief executive of the Chemical Industries Association, was speaking after councillors turned down two bids by Cuadrilla to frack at sites in Little Plumpton and Roseacre Wood, Lancashire.

He said that while chemical businesses “fully respected the role and responsibility of elected councillors across the UK”, it is was “disappointing that the country is not able to begin fracking”.

Mr Elliott said: “As supplies of gas from the North Sea diminish, the UK needs a new source to 
ensure security of supply, not least for the chemical sector which also uses gas as a feedstock (raw material). Shale gas offers the potential to both sustain our existing operations and contribute to future jobs and growth.”

He added: “I believe shale gas can and will be done in a way that is socially and environmentally sound. We have to respect the concerns of those who have questions and continue to work with legislators, regulators and policy-makers to reach a solution that meets our energy needs, provides reassurance to all and lets us compete on the global stage.

“Shale gas helps us to meet all of these challenges. I hope we all continue to debate this important issue”