Shale gas ‘will help boost area’s wages’

Certain:  Gary Lovatt
Certain: Gary Lovatt
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Communities based near onshore energy developments such as shale gas are set to benefit from more jobs and higher than average salaries, according to a new research paper.

The North West Energy Task Force published a research paper as it prepared to host a shale gas meeting at Blackpool Pleasure Beach last night.

The group claims fracking could lead to 60,000 new jobs in the energy sector and the wider supply chain. The Task Force also says the industry will increase local salaries and productivity.​

Gary Lovatt, Chairman of the Lancashire and Cumbria Federation of Small Businesses, said: “Coupled with our region’s talent and drive, I am certain shale gas could bring real jobs and investment opportunities to countless local communities.”

But opponents have vowed to fight the industry and claim figures produced to support shale gas production in Lancashire and other areas of the country are “pie in the sky”.