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bonnyclark Fri 06-Sep-13 19:57:56

My husband and I are very much against fracking, we have been down to Balcombe a few times to support the protest. My husband is a published songwriter and has donated a power protest song, called 'We Will Never Surrender', (Published by World Domination Music Ltd), all profits going towards the fight against fracking. You can download this song at
If you go into 'Fracking at Balcomber', you will see just how serious the situation is, and how much damage is being done to the planet. If we dont stop this 'assault', our children will never forgive us.

flipflop21 Fri 30-May-14 18:23:56

I've remembered now...they find out how much oil/gas they can get out by fracking...

So that's why people are getting the knickers in a twist.....

flipflop21 Tue 27-May-14 19:35:17

How do they find out?

Isitmebut Tue 27-May-14 12:47:07

OK flipflop, thank you for that.

Further to a much earlier point of mine on the serious need to find out how much of this 'stuff' is recoverable due to our national energy crisis, before acute national 'knicker bunching' - I wonder if we are getting a better idea of the true situation, or is it still as regionally clear as chemically fracked mud.

flipflop21 Sat 24-May-14 20:18:04

You just need to google frack spillages, fracking accidents, fracking well blowouts.

Isitmebut Thu 22-May-14 18:27:15

"Ineffective in preventing the risks"....really, have I missed any major incidents?

The EU sees Fracking as the 'bridge gap' until more enviro friendly alternative can be afforded or new ones come on tap, useful now Russia is now selling its gas to China and we were left in such a bad energy position by the last government.

Daddy0dude Thu 22-May-14 15:52:58

I live in Balcombe and it has been shocking how aweful Cuadrilla's performance has been in complying with regulations and conditions - exceeding limits set but not reporting them..... regulatory bodies not monitoring...and most concerning of all, regulatory bodies disregarding the risk to public health from flaring emissions and passing the buck.

It was a sad day for democracy when the WSCC planning committee, like every other body involved in this process from the EA to the DECC, dismissed some of the most serious concerns as �not in their remit� when deciding on the most recent application for flow-testing.

The UK regulations may well be tighter than the US, but they are disfunctional and proven to be ineffective at preventing the risks they are supposed to safeguard against.

So what does the government do? Repeats the one sided rhetoric and loosens the regulations...

flipflop21 Wed 26-Mar-14 18:30:25

Thanks Isitmebut - it's been useful to discuss this with you - and btw nothing wrong with a bottom burping observations.......

Isitmebut Wed 26-Mar-14 13:37:16

Flipflop….I suspect the only ‘gas’ we get from a wind turbine will depend on the operators diet. Sorry, I can't seem to get away from bad bottom burping observations.

Look, I don’t want to get further into the comparisons of wind energy, cost per megawatt (onshore & offshore) to nuclear, coal, solar or shale, the current generous government subsidies, the surprising small percentage of the day the thing works, the current energy generated by wind versus our needs, how many turbines it would take to replace/generate the electricity generated by gas (now and in the future) – mainly coz I don’t know enough about it. Lol

If thanks to people like you, keeping the debate alive and government on their toes, fracking/shale can safely be found and lifted as an answer to our dwindling supplies of gas and ever greater need to rely on imports, then we need to move forward asap. Thats all I can say.

flipflop21 Tue 25-Mar-14 22:26:53

£10.5 million for a test well at 2011 prices.

Whitlee windfarm average cost of a turbine approximately £1.4million, £300 million for the whole windfarm.

Average life time of wind turbine - expected to be at least 20 years.

flipflop21 Tue 25-Mar-14 20:57:49

How long does a wind turbine last? The average life of a fracking well is about 8 years - so in it's lifetime a wind turbine would probably provide more energy.. not sure though.

Isitmebut Tue 25-Mar-14 20:52:02

Re Sussex, excuse me I lost focus, for some reason I was just thinking about the Bowland shale basin due to that is where most recoverable gas figures come from that I've seen.

I get your point on one well (and nasty niffs) fueling the UK for 5.2 days, but based on time and cost, I wonder how long a wind turbine would fuel the UK for, 5.2 seconds? Just a silly thought, move on, nothing to worry about.

flipflop21 Tue 25-Mar-14 20:10:50

Isitmebut Sussex is definately on the cards for being fracked - that's why they're exploring there. Kimmeridge clay of the Weald Basin is a gas rich shale.

This map shows in yellow where licences are already in place and in blue where they are consulting on now.

You need to be aware Isitmebut that on average a shale well will produce 1.25 bcm of gas in its lifetime. The UK consumes approx 87bcm per year. This works out as .24bcm a day. Therefore each well will produce enough gas to fuel the UK for 5.2 days.

How many wells will you need to produce 40 years of gas for the whole of the uk? You do the maths - I've already gone over this before.

Isitmebut Tue 25-Mar-14 10:32:04

Claig…I guess I get the point that over the centuries we have had hyped up new commodity markets; the tulip, South Sea Bubble, rail, cars, planes, internet etc where stock market valuations soar in a kind of frenzied investor Ponzi scheme, then reality sets in, and valuations crash, taking decades to get back to original lofty heights.

The U.S. has already seen huge benefits in shale that has created countless jobs, lowered costs to businesses and consumers – and they will be self sufficient in oil/gas and exporting the stuff within a few years now; some Ponzi Scheme.

The recoverable shale gas benefits to the UK lasting 50-years are being calculated at 10% of proven reserves across 11 counties, which I don't think covers Sussex. Even if its only 5% recoverable and lasts 25-years, it buys us time. IMO.

Maybe if people stopped objecting to exploration wells and companies realised that there was only '3-days supply', they'd move on, and save a whole lot of stress/knicker bunching to those who will NOT be affected directly.

claig Mon 24-Mar-14 21:33:53

"In reality it is becoming increasingly clear that the shale revolution is a short-term flash in the energy pan, a new Ponzi fraud, carefully built with the aid of the same Wall Street banks and their “market analyst” friends, many of whom brought us the 2000 “” bubble and, more spectacularly, the 2002-2007 US real estate securitization bubble"

Saw an interesting article about shale gas where the pretty good political analyst, William Engdahl, said that it was a ponzi scheme. First time I have heard that, so don't know if it is true. But he is often quite a good analyst - he rightly says that global warming is a scam and he is spot on on GM food etc.

Tha article I saw was about Ukraine and how he felt that the shale prospects there were not as good as were being made out.

At Fernhurst, West Sussex the drilling company said that each well they fracked would produce enough oil to supply the UK for three days. Three days??? What's the point of that?!

He says that a lot of the extraction is uneconomic and there are not long-lasting reserves that can be accessed from some of the wells.

Here is one of his many articles on the theme, explaining his thinking

flipflop21 Mon 24-Mar-14 21:11:23

This looks good too:
"Millions of homes across the UK could be heated using a carbon-free technology that draws energy from rivers and lakes in a revolutionary system that could reduce household bills by 20 per cent."

Regarding safety, the government keeps reiterating how our regulatory measures are so robust, however the experience locally is that this is not the case. There are so many anomalies:

planning application inaccuracies,
lack of Environmental Assessments,
ineffective monitoring,
self monitoring,
necessary permits to remove waste not being in place,
planning agreements regarding truck movements and noise levels not being adhered to,
drilling companies having limited liabilities for any damage they may cause .. the list goes on.

The reality of regulation vs the govenrment rhetoric is my greatest concern.

The government has got a lot of work to do to convince me that they have our best interests at heart when they overturn european directives for mandatory Enviromental Impact Assessments, when they are actively "streamlining" the permit application processes, changing the law in order to reduce local government's power to object to drilling applications cutting the funding one of the regulatory bodies (the EA) lobbying to change the law to enable drilling under peoples' homes so if people do object they won't be able to do a thing about it, and then arresting people who protest peacefully.

This is all within the context of key members within the cabinet having investments (and in the case of Lord Browne a directorship) in drilling companies.

At Fernhurst, West Sussex the drilling company said that each well they fracked would produce enough oil to supply the UK for three days. Three days??? What's the point of that?!

So as I say - they have a lot of work to do.

Isitmebut Mon 24-Mar-14 10:40:33

I passed the horse’s ar$e test with honours, and now aspire to the cows.

On that subject (kinda), I saw a Countryfile repeat yesterday morning, and one of the subjects was a localised industry using a 24-hour chicken pooh converter into methane, and then making electricity – and I was quite impressed.

So now I’ll own up, generally I am pro green/energy renewables if 24-hour practical e.g. a wind turbine that can function (rather than be turned off) in a stiff British gale, and the cost of production isn’t at too much of a premium to traditional carbon based/nuclear energy.

But as I’ve mentioned, on nuclear power that forms the mainstay of most countries energy source balance, we have we have both run out of money and time, relying on a foreign State to both fund and design our new age reactors.

And yes if we had more money (and time) we could plough funds into developing more renewables, but due to our projected energy gap for years ahead we would be running just to stand still, so we need a plan to leap that gap within years.

But where we totally agree is that there should be NO shortcuts using all current and bespoke technology to solve every current safety issue raised.

Once on stream, fracking gives us so many options, so if the/any government wants to get the people on side with fracking, then IMO they have to OVER compensate on addressing peoples safety fears, after all, better found diligent now, than being found malfeasant later.

flipflop21 Sat 22-Mar-14 23:40:39

They could do the cow arse test.

Or they could monitor the air properly and then make sure that they are using the best available technology to reduce rogue emissions. They could also run a gas analysis to ensure that they know what gases are likely to be released.

But this isn't what they do - it's too expensive and slow. So unless there's obsessive anti-frackers finding this stuff out and asking questions, oil and gas companies can appear to do virtually what they want.

Incidentally, my green credentials are virtually non-existent. I wanted to actually like fracking as they were potentially doing it so close to me. But now I've looked beyond flaming taps and tax revenues, I don't.

Isitmebut Sat 22-Mar-14 00:48:15

I suspect however ‘bad’ the opposite of a lentil weaver is, I’d be holding my hands up on most counts, sorry.

Air quality is always good, flaring avoided at all costs, to satisfy the greens, maybe nature should be the benchmark?

Someone should stand behind a cow and test for the niff, toxicity and flare risks of their farts – if any worse than that, it shouldn’t be allowed by law.

Who sez I'm making up policies up on the hoof.

flipflop21 Fri 21-Mar-14 22:57:11

I'll not send you some lentils to weave then!

Regarding your nasty toxic niffs (so to speak!) you say there should be adequate filtering - by that I presume you mean that they should be able to extract hydorcarbons without reducing local air quality to a harmful level?

If safety features which mitigate the risks posed by flaring are not in place should exploration/ extraction companies be allowed to carry on and drill anyway?

Isitmebut Fri 21-Mar-14 21:03:12

May I plead ‘the 5th’ rather than disappoint you and your Green Captain Sensible views?

Seriously, although I can imagine that there are all sorts of nasty toxic niffs coming out of carbon energy bore holes of any kind, and anywhere, from coal mines to North Sea oil rigs, but I have no idea how they adapt/nullify/disperse them.

As you know my arguments are simple on national, security, economic, tax, market and costs grounds if the answer is legislate for all fracked shale PRODUCTION to be a ‘safe’ distance from homes, whatever that is, then so be it.

The exploratory bore holes to gauge the extent of reserves etc should not be close to homes, but if they are, adequate filtering or whatever of toxic niffs should always be provided.

If we as a country had decided that no coal should be mined, or no North Sea oil fields drilled in case something nasty came out, we could have been have been as ‘prosperous’ as a State run/subsidized Russia (without the oil) or a Portugal without the sun and beaches, who knows.

So I’m repeating earlier points, as a welfare State that clearly still wants to be so, but has an ongoing battle to balance our economy, heading for £1,500,000,000,000 (£1.5 trillion) of National Debt by 2015, with interest as ultra low rates we still are paying £53 billion a year in debt service cost - that can only go substantially higher and eating into annual spending budgets for decades to come – we have to embrace fracking, utilizing whatever cutting edge technology we have, to make it safe.

flipflop21 Fri 21-Mar-14 19:10:42

Isitmebut - you have presented strong arguments regarding the economics of fracking but that is only part of the picture. No response to my last post ? Are you a converted anti-fracker? hmm

flipflop21 Sat 15-Mar-14 10:25:21

My "scare stories" or an emerging truth?

I can share more if you like.

flipflop21 Sat 15-Mar-14 07:58:35

Sorry more precisely 1.1 km from the homes of about 2000 people.

flipflop21 Sat 15-Mar-14 07:20:37

There is an exploration bore hole a km from my home, in fact it is less than a km from 1000s of homes.
Yes - why on earth have they been allowed to do it there? You tell me.

Isitmebut Sat 15-Mar-14 01:02:19

Flipflop…of course I understand your concerns, they are no doubt everyone’s concerns, until proven safe – but as history is littered with peoples concerns on ‘change’, that turned out to be unfounded and/or outweighed by the benefits – everyone has to be open to facts.

But how stupid will it be on all levels including carbon footprints, if fracked gas has to travel here from China, the U.S. or South America, when we are sitting on our own.

As for your “its all very well saying if we had done such and such in 2005 we would not have the problems now”, I cannot understand why you are not getting the irony that INACTION a decade ago to a known problem, is bad governance that affects the people through their pockets.

Especially when the last Energy Minister of that government (Miliband), has been cynically electioneering that despite energy shocks like Russia/Ukraine, the fool can CONTROL energy prices now, by telling the companies that he KNEW back then were building nuclear power stations at their own cost (that would have to be recovered via people’s bills), has to now absorb the costs of energy price volatility.

Why then for the privilege of subsidising the UK with power stations costing around £10 billion each and then below market price energy, would these energy companies then build these nuclear power stations?

So this is not just about tax receipts, it is a building national crisis and we should not compound bad governance a decade ago, with more now, ‘making do’ with planned outages over the short term, for the benefit of the medium to long term.

I reiterate we had the largest annual budget deficit in Europe, so we cannot NOW afford large investments in renewable energy ourselves that will provide relatively little power to fill the growing energy gap, yet happen to be sitting on a huge natural resource – so the SOONER we know the facts and lift the stuff safely, the better.

As to YOUR scare stories of ‘flames, toxic this, hydro that, and other fatal malarkeys’ next to homes, the Bowland Shale Basin in the UK, said to be the largest basin of shale gas in the world, IS SPREAD ACROSS 11 COUNTIES. Why in god’s name would drilling have to be next to my home, or anyone elses?

Until we KNOW shale gas is recoverable safely, is there any surprise there is no legislation in place specifying distances from residential and other properties.

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