Send us news by text, start your message Knutsford News and your send photos and videos to 80360
Greenpeace protest in Knutsford over George Osborne's Tatton fracking plans
GREENPEACE campaigners have blocked off the Little Heath in Knutsford in a demonstration over the fracking of shale gas.
The campaigners have erected drilling rigs and other fracking equipment, while climbers have occupied the first floor balcony of the Conservative Office building and renamed it as the headquarters of “Frack & Go”.
Greenpeace has commissioned a ComRes poll showing the majority of his constituents oppose shale gas extraction, with widespread concern over noise and disruption, earth tremors and the impact on local house prices should fracking go ahead in the area.
Greenpeace Energy Campaigner Lawrence Carter, said: “Tatton is just one of hundreds of constituencies up and down the country earmarked for possible fracking as part of George Osborne’s disastrous energy plan.
“The Chancellor needs to explain to his constituents why he’s happy for their local area to be fracked when everyone from Ofgem to BP to the Energy Secretary says shale gas won’t reduce our energy bills.
"And he must explain why increasing UK reliance on expensive, polluting gas is a good idea when we should be moving towards a carbon free electricity system.”
The ComRes polling found that 12 per cent of those people who voted Conservative in the last election would be less likely to vote Tory again if fracking went ahead in Tatton.
The Campaign to Protect Rural England has warned of a huge backlash if large areas of countryside are ‘transformed into industrial sites’ with a steady stream of lorries transporting gas and polluted water away from drilling sites.
Greenpeace, along with hundreds of investors, business leaders, UK companies and civil society groups, is calling for carbon free electricity by 2030.
So far George Osborne has blocked the 2030 goal becoming law, but his own colleague, Conservative MP Tim Yeo, has tabled an amendment that would see a goal for carbon-free electricity in the Energy Bill, which is gaining support from all political parties.
Lawrence Carter said: “It’s time George Osborne stopped trying to play the JR Ewing of Cheshire and concentrated on investment in clean, safe, renewable technology that will create longer term jobs and a more stable economy.”
Chief Inspector Paul Carroll added: “Cheshire Constabulary can confirm that there is an ongoing protest at George Osborne’s constituency office in Manchester Road, Knutsford.
“Police are in attendance and the priorities for the constabulary are the safety of all parties, the facilitation of peaceful protest, that disruption is minimised and crime and disorder is prevented."