Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
It was great to hear the news from Lancashire that the county council had turned down an application to allow fracking to take place in the county.
A recent report from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), obtained after a freedom of information request, and released two days after the result in Lancashire, has shown that there are several reasons why fracking is bad news for communities, all of which have been voiced by our local campaign group, East Kent Against Fracking (EKAF).
There are four main reasons why fracking should not be considered an option and these are, firstly, house prices near fracking wells are likely to fall and the values of homes within a mile of wells have a potential reduction of 7%. Secondly, properties that are within a mile and a half of fracking sites may be subject to additional insurance costs. Thirdly, the leakage of fluids used in the fracking process has proved damaging to the environment in the USA and fourthly, even if contaminated water from the fracking process does not directly effect drinking water, which is by no means certain, there could well be human health affects through contaminated wildlife, agricultural products or livestock.
It has to be said that fracking could generate jobs and economic growth as well as providing greater energy security for the UK but at what cost? The jobs will not be long term or ‘quality’ jobs and the remains of fracking wells will scar our beautiful county.