Following assurances from Andrea Leadsom MP, Minister of State at Department of Energy and Climate Change, that there would be no fracking here in Bath, local MP, Ben Howlett, has been working in Westminster to try and ensure Bath’s Springs are protected from fracking in any neighbouring constituencies.
Last month the Energy Minister reassured residents that Bath Springs are protected by confirming:
“Bath and the surrounding areas are not located in a ‘shale prospective area’ according to shale resource estimates by the British Geological Survey.”
This month, Rory Stewart OBE MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Environment and Rural Affairs has replied to Ben confirming:
“The Environment Agency is aware of the sensitivity of Bath Springs, and we appreciate the complexity of the groundwater flow regime that drives the system. We would not approve a permit application that could be detrimental to the spring system, and we would encourage operators not to apply for permits in the vicinity of the springs”
Ben said of the response:
“I hope residents will be reassured that Bath and its hot springs will be protected under this administration from fracking. I will work to try and ensure that legislation backs up this commitment with a reform to the Avon Act, which I do not believe currently provides enough of a deterrent to future exploration in the area.”
Licence has been given to frack in Westwood, near Bradford On Avon. Around every fracking sight is a 10KM “zone of impact” acknowledged by the Government to have potential harm to the water aquifers. This zone includes the south east of Bath. That Ben Howlett is trying to reassure the people of Bath that this will not have an impact on the hot springs (as well as other fresh water springs around the hills of Bath) is a prediction he can not make. There is already so much evidence as to the environmental damage fracking causes. Lets not forget that Ben and all his other Tory MP’s, voted for the fracking of our countryside, despite public opinion. If he had any regard for the people of Bath he would be fighting this! Keep Wiltshire Frack Free, in fact, No Fracking Anywhere!!
If fracking is as safe as this government says it is, then why do the springs need protecting from fracking? What about the abundance of natural springs all over the country where licences have been granted?
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