Spring Update

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INQUIRY
First of all thank you all for your support during the Inquiry, either by joining in, letting friends and colleagues know what is going on, or contributing to our legal expenses.

Thanks to you all, we put on a good show and gave IGas a good run for their money. An objective of IGas was to sting the Council for expenses so that the Council would not oppose applications in the future. Well that did not work, the Inspector reminded IGas that the majority of their expenses were due to the Frack Free defence for which they had no come-back. In the recent trading announcement from IGas which showed a £25 million loss on £48 million trading. Once again IGas is in a dreadful financial state and not worthy to be undertaking anything involving the environment. Stay away IGas, you are not welcome, we will cost you every inch of the way!

This Inquiry was one of the first to be refused specifically on Climate Change, and the comparison given by the Council’s experts, the equivalent of an additional 36,000 cars per day in Ellesmere Port, or the same amount of gas as the Council uses in all its activities in the course of a year, or the same anount of gas to heat all the homes in Chester for a year, brought the truth of this industry home to the Inspector. The Council expert witnesses were so surprised that they are preparing an academic paper exploring this issue. Not coincidentally another group published that national fracking would contribute the same as 50 million additional cars on our roads!

And of course the Governments fracking policy was found to be unlawful because it did not consider climate change, something that the Government has a legal obligation to do both domestically and internationally. Given the current focuss on the Environment is is increasingly likey that this industry is dead and is in the process of being buried.

There is clearly some rethinking taking place in government, heralded by the resignation of the Fracking Supremo, Natascha Engle who claims she does not have the backing of the Government to make progress! Maybe the timing of the EPort decision reaching her desk and her resignation are not coincidental!

Last month the Inspector wrote to us saying that he was going to publish the decision early May, but that date was subsequently removed from the Planning Website so we do not have a decision date at the moment. It is likely that the Secretary of State is sitting on it for a number of other reasons; the Inspector’s holiday which lasts until late autumn, the Government’s unlawful fracking policy being made lawful, or something else on the horizon that we are not aware of – maybe even a declaration of a National Environmental Emergency which should finish this industry off once and for all in this country. This Inquiry has gone a long way to make that happen.

Once again thanks to everyone who made this happen, if you happened to sit in one of the hot seats at the Inquiry, we felt very supported and cared for. Thank you for standing up for the environment.

More details https://tinyurl.com/y28zk4ef

Hoping to see you soon.

Inquiry Update

The public inquiry decison into IGas plans to test the flow of its well
at Ellesmere Port has been delayed, the Planning Inspectorate has confirmed.
The inquiry, which ran for 12 days from January to March, was the first
of its kind to consider the impact of onshore oil and gas on climate
change.
A date had been scheduled for the decision, but the Planning
Inspectorate (PINS) said that this had been withdrawn following the
publication of greenhouse gas reduction targets by the government’s
advisor on climate change. The Committee on Climate Change said on 2nd
May the UK should phase out greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This net
zero target should be put into law as soon as possible, the report said.
A spokesperson for PINs said: “The decision on the Ellesmere Port
inquiry had to be postponed to seek comments/representations following
the government’s Committee on Climate Change net zero report published
in May. These comments will now be considered by the inspector and a
revised date for issuing the decision will be made as soon as possible”.
The Ellesmere Port inquiry had already been extended beyond the original
scheduled six hearing days. On what was due to be the final day, the
High Court ruled that national planning policy on the benefits of shale
gas was unlawful. On 24th May, the communities secretary, James
Brokenshire, acknowledged that the policy in paragraph 209a of the
National Planning Policy Framework had been quashed by the courts.
Inspector Brian Cook kept the inquiry open so that Cheshire West and
Chester Council, Frack Free Ellesmere Port and Upton, and IGas could
make legal submissions on the relevance of the ruling. Mr Cook had
originally said he would need at least a month to make his decision.
Frack Free Upton and Ellesmere Port said the inspector could no longer
safely give any weight to the government’s policy support for shale gas
for energy security and as a transition fuel to a low carbon future.
In a separate issue, the inspector also said he was required to contact
Natural England about whether a habitats assessment was needed. The
site, on Portside North, was close to the protected Mersey Estuary
wildlife site.
IGas has said it would take no further action in its exploration
licences in the Cheshire West and Chester Council area until the outcome
of the Ellesmere Port appeal. This included initial fracking plans at
Ince Marshes.

Ellesmere Port residents say – NO. The CW&C planning committee say – NO 28/01/18

Ellesmere Port residents say – NO.

The CW&C planning committee say – NO

cheshire frack free

A Public Inquiry will resume in Chester Town Hall from the 26thto the 28thFebruary; it deals with a number of firsts.

  • First public inquiry in the UK to be held where the planning application has been refused on the grounds of failing to mitigate the effects of climate change – granting the application would fly in the face of all recent climate science which requires us to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 Deg C. Ignoring this could lead to climatic disaster within a couple of decades.
  • First gas well sitethat is situated in an urban area – on an industrial estate with a new housing estate under construction only 320m away.

Nearly 1,500 separate objections and a petition of over 1000 signatures were against the proposal.

Public statements from three local MPs, a representative for the Cheshire Crime and Police Commissioner, have supported the groundswell of opposition. Many local residents gave moving accounts of how the existing pollution in Ellesmere Port and surrounding areas has affected their health adversely.

So far the inquiry has unearthed –

  • 250,000+ is the estimated policing cost to Cheshire Police if IGas is successful in this appeal.
  • 15,000+ is the amount of money raised in crowd funds for FFEP&U to defend the council decision.
  • 17,600 is the amount of tonnes of CO2 equivalent emissions the IGas proposal will cause.
  • 3,500 is the number of times a car would travel around the worldto expel the same amount of CO2.
  • 2 is the number of people who were in favour of the IGas proposals.
  • 0 is the number of permanent local jobs likely to be created as a result of the IGas operation.
  • 0 is the amount of Climate Change experts provided by IGas to the inquiry.

IGas are looking to sting the Cheshire West & Chester Council for the cost of the inquiry. IGas has to prove to the government appointed planning inspector, that the CW&C planning refusal is unreasonable. Potentially this cost could be considerable and will, without doubt, hit CW&C essential community services hard.

Frack Free Ellesmere Port & Upton will object to this IGas proposal every step of the way.

Crowd funding for the appeal – http://www.gofundme.com/ellesmere-port-appeal-fund

Visit http://www.ellesmereportfrackfree.uk

Ellesmere Port says NO! 20/01/19

cheshire frack free

The Public Inquiry being held in Chester Town Hall from the 22ndto the 24thJanuary has a number of firsts.

  • First Public Inquiryin the UK to be held where the planning application has been refused on the grounds of failing to mitigate the effects of climate change – granting the application would fly in the face of all recent climate science which requires us to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 Deg C otherwise face climatic disaster within a couple of decades.
  • First gas well site that is situated in an urban environment – on an industrial estate with a new housing estate under construction only 320m away.

Continue reading “Ellesmere Port says NO! 20/01/19”

Ellesmere Port is not for shale! 11/01/19

not for shale

The forthcoming inquiry will be a first –

  • First in the UK to be held where the planning application has been refused on the grounds of failing to mitigate the effects of climate change – granting the application would fly in the face of all recent climate science which requires us to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 Deg C otherwise face climatic disaster within a couple of decades.
  • First in the UK where the well site is located in an urban environment. If the precedent is set here, we could have gas wells popping up in towns all around the country.

Continue reading “Ellesmere Port is not for shale! 11/01/19”

Frack Free Ellesmere Port and Upton Needs You! 07/01/19

enq post 2

Firstly, wishing you a happy and successful 2019 and thanking you all for your support in 2018.

We are in the final lap of the run up to the Inquiry. So far we are on track and have submitted everything on time. We are in good shape to prevent Ellesmere Port from being turned into the centre of a gas extraction industry, it all remains to be lost or won on the day.

The Inquiry will be held at Chester Town Hall at 10am from 15th to 18th and 22nd to 24th January 2019.

Continue reading “Frack Free Ellesmere Port and Upton Needs You! 07/01/19”

IGas proposals threaten to damage public health in Ellesmere Port 07/01/19

Frack Free Ellesmere Port & Upton (FFEP&U) have issued ‘Proof of Evidence’, from nine expert witnesses, to the Government Planning Inspector, ahead of the Public Inquiry.

The inquiry will be held in Chester Town Hall from the 15thuntil the 23rdJanuary 2019.

FFEP&U will be supporting Cheshire West and Chester Council (CW&C) in their defence of the planning committee’s decision to refuse IGas planning permission to flow test their well in Ellesmere Port.

Evidence submitted to the inquiry identifies that the practices of the Unconventional Gas industry could have detrimental effects on health.

Continue reading “IGas proposals threaten to damage public health in Ellesmere Port 07/01/19”

Wrong Place – Wrong Time – Wrong Industry 17/12/19

PRESS RELEASE 10.12.18.

Frack Free Ellesmere Port & Upton (FFEP&U) issued their ‘Proof of Evidence’ from nine expert witnesses, to the Government Planning Inspector, ahead of the Public Inquiry. The inquiry will be held in Chester Town Hall from the 15thuntil the 23rdJanuary 2019.

FFEP&U are supporting Cheshire West and Chester Council (CW&C) in their defence of the planning committee decision to refuse IGas planning permission to flow test their well in Ellesmere Port. The grounds for their refusal were that it “fails to mitigate and adapt to climate change” and “ensuring best use of renewable energy use and generation”.

Continue reading “Wrong Place – Wrong Time – Wrong Industry 17/12/19”