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Letter to Leitrim County Councillors
Dear County Councillor,

I am writing to you about unconventional oil and gas extraction and exploration – ‘fracking’ – and the Leitrim County Development Plan (CDP). I understand that on Monday Dec 2 there will be a meeting to decide whether the council will insert a clause into the CDP to ban fracking. I urge you to make sure the following clause is inserted into Leitrim’s CDP: ‘Unconventional oil and gas exploration and extraction are prohibited/banned in County Leitrim.’

There has already been a motion in Leitrim County Council calling on the government to ban fracking which was passed by the majority. If you voted for this motion, stand strong and push for a ban on fracking to be inserted into the county development plan. If you voted against the motion, I urge you to reconsider your position on fracking. There are several reasons it is imperative you make sure fracking is banned in Co. Leitrim’s CDP.

When you conducted the review of the CDP in April how many Leitrim residents contacted you about fracking? For over two years now the people of Leitrim have made it clear: they want fracking banned. I’m sure you know that there were 1,356 valid submissions to the EPA’s public consultation on the Terms of Reference for the research to be carried out on fracking. Many of these submissions were calling for a national ban on fracking. They were also calling for a Health Impact Assessment, which the EPA is not going to carry out. One of the many reasons people in Leitrim want fracking banned is the proven negative impacts it has had on people’s health in areas that have been fracked.[1]

I understand that the EPA have made a submission to the draft county development plan suggesting that Leitrim Co Council consider a ‘Non-Renewable Energy Strategy’ in which hydrocarbon extraction could be considered in ‘an integrated way.’

Now, the EPA is tasked with carrying out the research that will inform the government’s decision on fracking. It is not carrying out research into health impacts of fracking, which was one of the mandates of the people. And it hasn’t even begun the research yet: the EPA should not be advising any county councils on ways that they can make sure that hydrocarbon exploration and extraction are included in the county development plan. The people that hydrocarbon exploration and extraction will affect if it goes ahead are the ones that must have a say.

I remind you that the Council’s policy is to forbid mineral, gas and oil extraction if it impacts negatively on the environment, infrastructure and the amenity value of neighbouring lands. Anywhere fracking has taken place it has had a negative impact on these factors. [2]

Furthermore I remind you that there is an obligation on the council to observe the Water Framework Directive and River Basin Management Plans, protecting water quality in Leitrim. Fracking has been proven to contaminate groundwater.[3]

There is significant potential for wind energy in Leitrim, as you know. Massachusetts in the United States has double the jobs in clean energy as their fracked neighbours in Pennslyvania. [4] As well as job potential, windmills will not contaminate our water.

All of the above policies of Leitrim County Council are incompatible with fracking. The argument that the County Council can’t create a policy on fracking because it must be in line with the national policy is not valid: the national government doesn’t have an official policy on fracking. The CDP is for county councillors and residents of Leitrim to decide. And the people of Leitrim certainly know how they feel about it: they want a ban, and it’s your responsibility to take a position on this matter.

Lastly, I would like to remind you that Donegal County Council has already banned fracking in their CDP. So any arguments that it is not possible are null.

Kind regards,

———————————–
greynolds@leitrimcoco.ie; sineadguckian@leitrimcoco.ie; tmulligan@leitrimcoco.ie;
info@kilranelaw.ie; smcgowan@leitrimcoco.ie; estenson@leitrimcoco.ie; jmccartin@eircom.net; orourke_paddy@eircom.net; ghughes@leitrimcoco.ie;
callian_ellis@eircom.net; sinnfeinliatroma@eircom.net; fergusonm@eircom.net;
mcdermott_sean@eircom.net; frankdolan03@eircom.net; fdolan@leitrimcoco.ie;
siobhanmcgloin@eircom.net; comary_bohan@eircom.net;  gilmartin_francis@eircom.net; john_mcternan@eircom.net; dolan_gerard@eircom.net;
emcgloin@leitrimcoco.ie;

Please note comary_bohan@eircom.net;  email is bounced back.

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[1] N. Steinzor et al., Investigating Links Between Shale Gas Impacts and Health through a Community Survey Project in Pennsylvania, New Solutions, Vol. 23(1) 55-83 (2013), available at http://www.earthworksaction.org/files/publications/SteinzorSubraSumiShaleGasHealthImpacts2013.pdf.

AND

Colorado School of Public Health, Study shows air emissions near fracking sites may have serious health impacts, @THEFOREFRONT (Mar. 19, 2012), http://attheforefront.ucdenver.edu/?p=2546&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+theforefront+%28%40theForefront%29.

[2] See USGS, Hydraulic Fracturing Fluids Likely Harmed Threatened Kentucky Fish Species (Aug. 28., 2013), available at http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=3677.

AND

Danielle Muoio, Duke researchers show dip in home value caused by nearby fracking, THE CHRONICLE (Nov. 16, 2012), http://www.dukechronicle.com/articles/2012/11/16/duke-researchers-show-dip-home-value-caused-nearby-fracking.

[3] See Brian Fontenot et al., An evaluation of water quality in private drinking water wells near natural gas extraction sites in the Barnett Shale Formation, ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (Jul. 25, 1983), available at http://blogs.star-telegram.com/files/uta-water-study.pdf.

AND

Robert Jackson et al., Increased stray gas abundance in a subset of drinking water wells near Marcellus shale gas extraction, PNAS EARLY EDITION (Jun. 3, 2013), available at http://catskillcitizens.org/learnmore/dukedocument_ew_01.pdf.

[4] Greentech Media, MA Has Double the Jobs in Clean Energy That PA Has in Natural Gas, BREAKING ENERGY (Sep. 19, 2013), http://breakingenergy.com/2013/09/19/ma-has-double-the-jobs-in-clean-energy-that-pa-has-in-natural-gas/.


From: mcairns@notforshale.com [mailto:mcairns@notforshale.com]
Sent: 21 September 2013 21:11
To: Colly.Kelly; Kevin Campbell; Jim Clifford; Patricia Logue; Ann Donnelly; John Boyle; Sean Carr; Michael Cooper; John Tierney; maeve mclaughlin; Gerry.maclochlainn@derry-city.org; eamon.mcauley@derrycity.gov.uk; Thomas Conway; Maurice Devenney; Paul
Fleming; Gus Hastings; Gary Middleton; Brenda Stevenson; Jimmy Carr; Colum.Eastwood@derrycity.gov.uk; Shaun Gallagher; Tony Hassan; Elisha
McLaughlin Contact; Gerard Diver; Lynn Fleming; April Garfield-Kidd;
Mary Hamilton; Joe Miller; Martin Reilly; Drew Thompson
Subject: When Fracking Goes Wrong..

When Fracking Goes Wrong..

Hello

With the introduction of Fracking for Shale gas becoming a real possibility here, and along with the voices hailing it as the way forward and a great idea that is perfectly safe. I would like to make people aware if they are not aware already of the devastation happening
right now in Colorado USA. In Boulder and Weld counties Colorado, there is massive flooding. 20,000 Frack wells maybe affected, destroyed overturned and leaking. Toxic chemicals are leaking everywhere and into the main rivers along with Oil-Gas, and not to mention the radioactive byproducts from drilling. A simple search on the internet will soon
reveal the sheer scale of the damage. To make the point clear and simple, I have never heard of anyone being killed by a Solar Panel nor Tidal Wave generation system.
The threat posed by the Unconventional Oil and Gas industry’s that needs 24/7 stringent regulation and oversight are omnipresent. The truth remains as we have seen from Fukushima and in Fracked Colorado that  when we use extreme forms of energy and energy extraction, we are taking a big risk. Though we can put in as many fail-safes as we like, unexpected natural events can upset all plans to leave mass devastation later.
Is this what could be in store for Fermanagh and other parts if this island?
We do not need this risk.
Michael Doran CEO (Action Renewables Belfast) makes the point:
Ireland, North and South has the potential to generate over 100% electricity with in 20-30 years from renewables.
We simply do not need Fracking for Shale Gas.

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-colorado-floods-20130920,0,3430832.story?track=rss
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/charles-perrow/fukushima-forever_b_3941589.html?utm_hp_ref=science&ir=Science
https://www.facebook.com/EastBoulderCountyUnited

Reply from Councilor Shaun Gallagher of  Derry SDLP.

http://www.councillor.info/derry/sgallagher/0/Default.aspx

Thank you for this I have listed Fracking for debate at our party
conference in November calling for it to be banned North and South
( Shantallow Branch )…Shaun
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Dear Minister Rabbitte,

I refer to your recent comments in the journal.ie, (see Fracking Matters Newsletter 110) where you said if the technique of fracking were given “a clean bill of health and that the technology was safe and that the water tables weren’t damaged, and so on, you could see a situation where whoever’s in government at the time could consider that there is merit in us exploring to see whether we have resources in the area”.

There is plenty of evidence to suggest that the technology of unconventional gas extraction is not safe for the environment or human health. However, even if our EPA were to give fracking ‘a clean bill of health’, the ‘merit’ is questionable. A close look at the numbers proves that fracking in the United States has not been as much of a boom as is often stated.

Friends of the Earth Europe have produced two excellent factsheets on this, one on the US and one on Europe – http://www.foeeurope.org/shale-gas-economic-myths-210513

I quote from the factsheet on the US:

‘The shale gas industry has overstated reserves
significantly due to huge overestimations of the amount
of very productive wells (sweet spots). This is partly due to
more relaxed reserve accounting rules adopted by the
Securities and Exchange Commission (S.E.C.) after intense
pressure from the industry.4, 10, 11 Well performance and
reserves were based on company estimates, before actual
data about output became available. The actual data
showed very disappointing results for the industry: for
the five biggest US shale gas plays – or fields whose
source is the same reservoir – well productivity declined
between 63% and 80% in the first year. In other words,
after only one year, wells only produced 20% to 37% of
their initial output, with production declining throughout
the entire lifespan of a gas well (see Figure 1).’

And the factsheet on Europe shows that fracking is unlikely to bring economic benefits to the region:

‘Shale gas proponents heralded the shale gas boom in the United States (US) as an unqualified success story, worthy of repeat in Europe – where it would bring
significantly lower gas prices and increased competitiveness of European industries.
However, proponents ignore the differing geological, geographical and hydrological
conditions in Europe, and the lack of drilling infrastructure and know-how, which make a replication of the US experience in Europe impossible. The US route, one reliant on artificially low prices driven by speculation and industry overestimates, if repeated in Europe would be hindered by significantly higher costs, and a pace of development unlikely to impact upon gas prices. There is strong evidence that shale gas plays a negligible role in the competitiveness of national economies and could only thrive in Europe through massive public subsidies which would put it in direct competition with renewable energy sources. This report raises serious questions about the economic case for shale gas by drawing on key industry sources, economic experts and business consultants.’

Kind regards,
Sian Cowman

LETTER FRACKING FREE CLARE

Dear Minister,

Loop Head Peninsula, County Clare has just been awarded as “The Best Place To Holiday in Ireland” in a national competition (with over 1400 entries) run by The Irish Times newspaper (27th May 2013).

Loop Head Peninsula is located in the Clare Basin which is part of the 498km2 area targeted by Enegi Oil Plc for fracking/unconventional gas development.

How can tourism based on natural beauty and natural resources thrive alongside the fracking/unconventional gas development industry?

Will people choose to holiday in Loop Head if the view is spoiled by wells, concrete pads, fences, industrial signs, heavy trucks and fracking waste water ponds?

Will people choose to holiday in Loop Head if the fields that used to be full of cattle and signs of rural farming life are instead replaced by this destructive industry?

Will people choose to holiday in Loop Head if they’re worried about drinking and bathing in the local water?

Will people choose to holiday in Loop Head if they’re concerned about the air that they breathe may be contaminated by fracking chemicals?

The Loop Head Tourism Group have worked tirelessly to generate a buzz about the region by growing new initiatives which cherish and champion what is uniquely Loop Head (walking tours, eco – camping, whale and dolphin watching, bird watching, wildflower and herb courses, water based activities and tours etc). In addition to these initiatives the Minister for transport, tourism and sport, Michael Ring recently unveiled plans for the Wild Atlantic Route which will encompass this region. These people’s efforts will all be for nothing if fracking/unconventional gas development is allowed to take hold in this area.

PLEASE think of this community and the livelihoods of these people and the sustainability of the region when you are considering whether or not fracking/unconventional gas development is suitable for The Clare Basin.

FRACKING AND TOURISM CAN NOT CO – EXIST,
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 Open letter  to all members of the Irish ParliamentLoop Head wins Ireland’s Top Tourism Destination Competition, but Enegi wants to FRACK there

28 May 2013 Dear Taoiseach,
Dear Tanaiste,
Dear Ministers,
Dear TDs.
Dear Senators,

Yesterday we could read in the Irish press that out of 1,400 entries to a competition
Loop Head peninsula in Co Clare has been named the “Best Place to Holiday in Ireland”.

Read full letter, plenty of info about fracking
Thanks to Charlie Williams!
https://sites.google.com/site/frackingireland/open-letter-to-all-members-of-the-irish-parliament—loophead-wins-ireland-s-top-tourism-destination-competition-but-enegi-wants-to-frack-there

LETTER to the editor
http://www.irishtimes.com/debate/letters/letters-to-the-editor-loop-head-tourism-award-and-fracking-threat-1.1407957

Letter to Minister Leo Varadkar (Transport, Tourism and Sport) and Minister of
State (Tourism and Sport) by snail mail tomorrow, asking them to protect
Loop Head by initiating legislation to permanently ban unconventional
gas exploration and extraction in Ireland and preserve Ireland’s
Guaranteed Fracking Free status.

May 28, 2013

 Minister Leo Varadkar, TD
Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport
Leinster House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2

 Dear Minister Varadkar,

 As you are no doubt aware, the Loop Head Peninsula has been selected from over 1,400 entries as the “Best Place to Holiday in Ireland” in a national competition run by the Irish Times.

 The Loop Head Peninsula is located in the Clare Basin and is included in the area for which Enegi Oil has applied to the government for a shale gas exploration license. This license, if granted, would pave the way for hydraulic fracturing to take place in the area.

 This would mean well pads spaced at intervals of perhaps 1 or more per square kilometer, with all of the ancilliary roads, gas infrastructure, heavy tanker traffic, and air and water pollution that such development has invariably brought with it in the USA and Canada. This sort of industrialization would destroy Loop Head.

 Given the steep declines in production that are characteristic of shale gas wells (production falls by up to 80% in the first year and steadily thereafter), and the evidence from the USA that revenue from the gas tends not to cover the costs of production, even in the most productive fields, especially after the initial year or two of production, it is difficult to understand how the Irish government could be contemplating destroying forever one of the most beautiful places in Ireland, where tourism and agriculture have supported sustainable local employment for generations, by allowing this highly polluting and destructive form of short-term resource exploitation.

 Ireland’s tourism sector trades on Ireland’s image as a green, unspoiled island. Many of our visitors come from the USA and know well the health and environmental risks of unconventional shale gas extraction. They will not want to visit Ireland if this polluting practice is allowed here.

To protect the Loop Head Peninsula and the reputation on which the entire tourism sector in Ireland depends, I urge you and your cabinet colleagues to initiate without further delay legislation that would permanently and completely ban all unconventional gas exploration and extraction in Ireland.

 Ireland’s current Guaranteed Fracking Free status is something that Ireland should boast about and enact legislation to protect permanently.

Kind regards,

 —————————————–

 May 2013

Email by e post card action

There was a piece in RTE today (link at the end) that it might be worth responding to in your email. Minister Rabbitte spoke about “community resistance” to fracking and said ‘the public’s fears have first to be allayed, including ensuring that water quality supply will not be negatively affected by the extraction of shale gas using chemicals.’ Below are some possible responses.

Firstly, water quality can not be protected from fracking contamination. Officials say that groundwater and aquifer quality can be protected by strong well casings, but this myth has been debunked several times over. Here’s Dr. Anthony Ingraffea on this topic, on video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjaRwh4xRiM and text: http://www.scribd.com/doc/112348175/Gas-Well-Leaks. Also see the UK’s first fracking leak, just a month ago: http://frack-off.org.uk/first-uk-fracking-leak-as-dart-energy-wells-fail/

Secondly, it isn’t only water that can be contaminated from fracking. The Irish Doctor’s Environmental Association has said ‘air may also be contaminated by volatile chemicals released during drilling and from other operations, during methane separation or by evaporation from holding ponds.’ (http://ideaireland.org/library/on-hydraulic-fracturing-fracking/) And don’t forget the emissions from all the trucks needed to haul fracking materials! Also see this peer-reviewed study on the impacts of gas drilling on human and animal health – http://concernedhealthny.org/impacts-of-gas-drilling-on-human-and-animal-health/
Regarding health impacts of fracking, people’s testimonials are important – see this List of the Harmed from Pennsylvania. http://pennsylvaniaallianceforcleanwaterandair.wordpress.com/the-list/

Animals are especially exposed to contaminated air and water. Farming areas of America that have been fracked have serious cases of animal illness and death. Are we going to frack our agriculture industry and food supply? See this excellent article on fracking, farming and food: http://www.thenation.com/article/171504/fracking-our-food-supply

The economics of fracking are not convincing. See Deborah Rogers’ report on shale gas as the new investment boom – http://energypolicyforum.org/portfolio/was-the-decline-in-natural-gas-prices-orchestrated/ and Bucknell University’s report ‘Unanswered Questions About The Economic Impact of Gas Drilling In the Marcellus Shale: Don’t Jump to Conclusions,’ http://www.bucknell.edu/script/environmentalcenter/marcellus/default.aspx?articleid=SCMZX96ZWOKO9OE9OV2737F7U
The amount of jobs that fracking can provide is questionable. See this article detailing an Ohio study on fracking jobshttp://grist.org/news/ohio-fracking-boom-has-not-brought-jobs/

And lastly, shale gas is not ‘green’, and certainly not an answer to the climate crisis! Methane is a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and studies suggest wells are leaking methane: http://www.nature.com/news/methane-leaks-erode-green-credentials-of-natural-gas-1.12123

Many thanks to Shale Gas Bulletin Ireland for the links above. https://sites.google.com/site/shalegasbulletinireland/home

http://www.rte.ie/news/2013/0517/450904-minister-does-not-expect-energy-price-increases/

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Minister of State, Fergus O’Dowd replied to campaigners re. letters he received
——————————————————————————————————

“I wish to confirm that no decision will be made on these applications until
there has been time to consider the outcome of further research
to be commissioned by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the
use of this technology.
I would also like to confirm that any application for an exploration
license that proposed the use of hydraulic fracturing as part of an
unconventional gas exploration programme would be subject to an
environmental impact assessment. Under the Environmental Impact
Assessment Directive (85/337/EEC, as amended), it is not possible to
permit a project unless it can be objectively determined, following
assessment, that it would not have an unacceptable environmental or
social impact.
The environmental impact assessment requirements for such projects would
be informed by the findings of the further research to be commissioned
by the EPA. Accordingly, no decision will be made on any proposal for
the use of hydraulic fracturing in exploration drilling in Ireland until
there has been time to consider the outcome of this further EPA research.
The EPA has announced the proposed terms of reference for the more
extensive second stage of its research into the use of hydraulic
fracturing, the final results of which are expected in early 2015.”

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Letter to Pat Rabbitte: – By North West Network Against Fracking

(May 2013)

Dear Minister

We , the representatives of communities living in the proposed “gasfields” zones of Leitrim, Fermanagh, and Clare, are informing the general population of these areas by door to door information campaigns, leaflet distribution, public meetings with expert speakers from Canada, the US, Germany and Australia, as we do not have an iota of confidence in you, your department, the EPA or your gas industry funded university scientists, to tell us that if “rigorously regulated” onshore unconventional gas extraction is “safe”.
The Aberdeen university report based on now discredited peer reviews from the university of Texas are just one example of the danger we are being put in by your department, the profit before public health driven gas industry, the captured state mouthpiece media, and those vultures circling, the corporate feudalists who sense another “boom” (which will be followed by a toxic, environmentally degrading “bust”.
We are parents of young children, law abiding citizens whose only weapon or strength is that we speak the truth, and there is a huge  ground swell of support from those living in our communities for a ban on any form of exploration or extraction of unconventional shale , tight sands, or coal seam gas .
You have disrespected our communities with glib comments and inference that whilst you will “listen to the science”, we are gleaning our information from flawed documentaries. We are constantly updating our research data and information, and the flow of information from Canada, the US and Australia is increasing every day.
We will remain a peaceful social action campaign committed to preventing this industry decimating our environment.
Yours
M.Rybicki
M.McAuley
NORTH WEST NETWORK AGAINST FRACKING

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TAKE ACTION NOW – WRITE  and APPLY!

Maps of licensed areas in ROI and NI: http://frackingfreeireland.org/info-to-download/maps/

 LETTERS TO NORTHERN IRELAND – DETI   Please sent before Friday 26 April 5 pm

Hello all, we are down to the last day now, if you haven’t already please send a letter to DETI in NI. They are about to hand out a new license, now all of Lough neagh has Fracking licenses around it. This is 1/3 or 1/2 of NI drinking water……..

Please find below a sample letter, just copy paste and send…..please.
private.office@detini.gov.uk
————————————————–

Sample letter to be sent asap
Room 53. Netherleigh,
Massey Avenue,
Belfast,
BT4 2JP.

 

Call for meaningful public consultation before considering granting Petroleum License PL1/13I am writing to object to your proposal to grant Petroleum Licence PL1/13. This licence which includes the following counties Antrim, Down, Tyrone, Londonderry and Armagh covers a large and densely populated area of Northern Ireland. It almost encompasses Lough Neagh running right through Belfast city centre down to Holywood. Public notification of your intent appeared as a tiny inconspicuous ad in some local newspapers. According to a DETI press statement you have already decided to award the licence. Your call for representations is nothing more than a ‘cosmetic’ exercise.You have said that the company, CHx, have declared an interest in exploring for conventional oil/gas. The licence, however, can be easily be extended to include unconventional oil and gas. When PL1/13 is granted, CHx simply need to ask DETI to increase the scope. According to DETI, all that would be required would be a reassessment of CHx’s financial capacity and technical expertise. Should all be in order, the company would be permitted to explore for unconventional resources. DETI would not inform the public of the change to the licence.DETI say that both coal and/or shales(both unconventional), are possibly targets. Should CHx wish to proceed further following exploration, they could go on to ask the Department of the Environment for planning permission to drill and frack these resources.Although you will insist this is not a licence to frack, once this license is granted there is no get-out unless the company breaks the terms of the license. It is the start of a virtually unstoppable chain of events with fracking/Coal Bed Methane extraction being the final outcome.Unconventional gas and oil drilling is one of the most controversial and polluting environmental issues around the world today. Given that this new licence area is adjacent to Lough Neagh which supplies nearly 50% of Northern Ireland’s drinking water, nearly 43% of Northern Ireland drains into the Lough and sewage pollution of the lough is already a very serious concern, why are you rushing headlong into granting this new license? What we become of us if our water is polluted and we can no longer drink it?

My other major concerns centre around potential longer term negative health impacts and loss of prime agricultural land to this dirty industrial process. We love to welcome people here with promises of beautiful, unspoilt countryside. I would like it to stay this way.

As you well know, the granting of onshore petroleum licences has been put on hold on both mainland UK and the Republic of Ireland; on mainland UK they await the updating of the Strategic Environmental Assessments (SEA) and the Republic of Ireland are prepared to wait for the results of new EPA research which is actually a joint initiative with the NIEA. The rest of the UK recognize that a SEA is a useful tool for safeguarding the environment but I note with alarm that you are refusing to carry one out. Do you not value our environment?

Considering the negative reaction over similar licences in Fermanagh, Antrim and Derry/Londonderry, it is my belief that if the people of Northern Ireland knew that all six counties are now included in a new licence which may well result in unconventional gas/oil exploitation, there would be a public outcry.

You have shown no respect for the general public or for the democratic process by railroading this licence through. As someone who lives in this area and as member of the voting public, I expect meaningful public engagement before a decision of this magnitude is reached. I am calling for a thorough public and meaningful consultation before this licence is considered for approval.

Yours sincerely(include address)

__________________________________________________________________________

LETTERS TO IRISH POLITICIANS

We need hundreds of letters!!!!!

WRITE

Tamboan and Enegi Oil have applied for exploration licenses.
Exploration licences must not be granted!

Please write immediately to the minister.
Sample letters on http://goodenergiesalliance.com/
Thanks to Good Energie Alliance Ireland  AND BELOW

Demand that Minister for State Fergus O’Dowd issue no further licences.
FACTS
Tamboran and Enegi Oil have now applied for Exploration Licences.
Exploration Licences without permission to frack can be granted by the Minister at any time.
With such licences, companies can look for planning permission, build pads, drill and flare. In the meantime, they can look for permission to frack.

If they find a commercial source of gas, they WILL be granted permission for development. “It shall be the duty of the Minister to grant that application”. (Licensing terms for offshore oil and gas exploration and development, 1992).

Once a Development Licence is granted, the companies have the RIGHT OF ACCESS TO ALL LAND within the licenced areas.
EXPLORATION LICENCES MUST NOT BE GRANTED!

Minister for State Fergus O’Dowd must be bombarded with letters NOW. He has been delegated the power to grant Exploration Licences and can do so at any time. We must demand that no further licences be granted.
Here are two draft letters, one very direct, the other with a more strategic approach. If you wish, take whichever one you wish, add your name and contact details and post or email fergus.odowd@oir.ie. He also is on Twitter (@Fergusodowd). Or write your own letter, of course!
   Letter to the minister: fergus-odowd-230213-v2

Minister Fergus O’Dowd
Minister of State
Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources
Dáil Eireann
Dublin 2

23rd February 2013
Dear Minister O’Dowd

We understand that you have been delegated the power to grant Licences for Unconventional Gas Exploration and Extraction.

We also understand that Enegi Oil plc and Tamboran Resources have recently applied for Exploration Licences in areas where they currently hold Licencing Options.

We are aware that the EPA has been commissioned to coordinate a new research study on the Environmental Impacts of Unconventional Gas Exploration and Extraction; also that the Government have made a commitment not to allow hydraulic fracturing before this study is completed and considered. This study is expected to be completed sometime in 2014. We are also aware that major relevant studies are being carried out currently in the US and also the EU, also to be completed in 2014/2015

Given that there are major concerns around the impacts on the environment and on public health of the whole process of unconventional gas extraction, not just the stage of hydraulic fracturing, we consider that the granting of any further on-shore unconventional gas Exploration Licences would be against the common good.


We therefore demand that the Government gives a commitment that no further licences will be granted for On-shore Unconventional Gas Exploration or Extraction.

and

APPLY
Thursday 21 Feb. 2013
Dear visitor of the Fracking Free Ireland website!

Please find below  a letter addressed to Ministers Rabbitte and O’Dowd. This letter is to remind the government that we have rights and we deserve those rights to be respected and therefore do not want our government to grant exploration licences to the shale gas industry, as explained by one of our campaign groups here.
Here are the  Word and pdf versions, complete with the Keep Ireland Fracking Free Logo.
ApplicationLicenceNotToFrackIreland (word doc)
ApplicationLicenceNotToFrackIreland  (pdf)

We are asking as many people as possible to sign the letter and send it to the government before next Thursday, February 28. This is the date by which the three companies in possession of options licences (but not Petroleum Prospecting Licences as we found out recently) have to apply for an exploration licence. Enegi Oil, the company with an options licence for Clare, confirmed this morning that it has made its application.

I would appreciate it if you could share this letter with all your friends and family, both in Ireland and abroad. I am sure we all want to keep Ireland fracking free, which means preserving our sustainable indigineous industries of agri-food and tourism.
In one way or another, we can all expect to pay a high price if fracking gets the go-ahead on our Emerald Isle, so this issue is far from being a local one.

Many thanks for your continued support. We have to win and we will win because we have no other choice.
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Application for a Licence Not to Frack Ireland

To:
Minister Pat Rabbitte
Petroleum Affairs Division
Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
29 – 31 Adelaide Road
Dublin 2

Cc: Minister Fergus O’Dowd

February 2013

Dear Minister Rabbitte,

We, People of Ireland and friends of Ireland, hereby apply to the Petroleum Affairs Division for a licence not to carry out hydraulic fracturing in Ireland. Due to economic necessity, human and animal health and future happiness of communities, we feel it is imperative that our wishes are carried out. The pending deadline of February 28 for applications by gas companies for exploration licences is, for us, a deadline for our futures.
The reasons we need a licence granted for Ireland not to be fracked are:

Our right to exist in a rural area, not an industrial zone
Our right to live and work in an area without 24-hour noise and light pollution
Our right to clean, uncontaminated water
Our right to continue to live in our own community
Our right to carry out our indigenous businesses of tourism, food production, farming and agri-food unhindered
Our right to have our elected representatives carry out our wishes
Our right not to have our natural resources used for the benefit of others
Our right not to have our reputation as a clean environment abroad spoiled
Our right not to have our health damaged for the good of multinational companies

Signed ________________

Place of residence __________________
_______________________________________________________________________________________________

(Ineke) realized that I had the scanned petitions and decided to send them on the deadline day for applications.

To: fergus.odowd@oireachtas.ie; pat.rabbitte@oireachtas.ie; taoiseach@taoiseach.gov.ie
Subject: 28 February 2013, remembrance day

Dear Minister, Minister of State and Taoiseach,

Please accept the scanned petitions from the Irish people and all concerned people to keep Ireland as a green Island.

Today it is the last day that companies can apply for an exploration license for unconventional gas extraction. As I understand two companies have applied for an exploration license.

10 years ago I moved to Ireland to work and to live in the utmost green and pristine country I have ever seen!
Ireland has clean air and water you hardly find on the continent, assets that are worth cherishing.

In my view, there is no place in Ireland for unconventional gas extraction, no place for hydraulic fracturing. Unconventional gas extraction is out of date, Ireland could be the leader of renewable energies, wind, wave, tidal and blue energy to name a few.
Stabilizing global climate means leaving 80% of existing fossil fuels in the ground. If the global climate is to be saved we must reduce our greenhouse gas emissions with 90% by 2030 to avert a further rise of more than 1.2 °C to prevent a runaway irreversible global warming.*
Exploring for more fossil fuels undermines the investment required in energy conservation and renewables.

Water management, trading in water, renewable energies, these are the treasures of Ireland that distinguish it from countries on the continent.
Keep Ireland green, keep Ireland free of dirty industries and Ireland will be rewarded by tourists who are hungry for a touch by nature, Irelands spirituality and who will meet the friendly Irish people.

As with the smoking ban, Ireland may set a new ban for the world to follow: a ban on unconventional gas extraction, a ban on further fossil fuel exploitation and and it’s associated CO2 emissions. Ireland has already its given green image, an image that must be built upon by becoming a world advocate for sustainability. By moving away from an over dependence on finite fossil fuels Ireland can set an example of a new sustainable green economy and community for the world to follow.

Have a look at the website Fracking Free Ireland, with a lot of information regarding hydraulic fracturing, some pro’s and much more con’s.

Make up your mind, the future of Ireland and consequently the Earth is in your hands!

God Bless,

Ineke Scholte

www.frackingfreeireland.org
ineke@frackingfreeireland.org

ps have a look at   Fractured landscapes – DCTV (November 2012)
Vimeo: http://vimeo.com/53026045
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rEgnH5hi5as

from 15.10 and at the end of the video 21.40  I outline my view on the future of Ireland.

*Village Magazine February/March 2013 Issue pp 24, 25
———————————————————————————————————————————————

Apply for a Frack Free Leitrim  –
http://www.leitrimobserver.ie/news/local/apply-for-a-frack-free-leitrim-1-4780158

Application for a Licence Not to Frack Ireland

To:
Minister Pat Rabbitte
Petroleum Affairs Division
Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
29 – 31 Adelaide Road
Dublin 2

Cc: Minister Fergus O’Dowd

February 2013

Dear Minister Rabbitte,

We, People of Ireland and friends of Ireland, hereby apply to the Petroleum Affairs Division for a licence not to carry out hydraulic fracturing in Ireland. Due to economic necessity, human and animal health and future happiness of communities, we feel it is imperative that our wishes are carried out. The pending deadline of February 28 for applications by gas companies for exploration licences is, for us, a deadline for our futures.
The reasons we need a licence granted for Ireland not to be fracked are:

Our right to exist in a rural area, not an industrial zone
Our right to live and work in an area without 24-hour noise and light pollution
Our right to clean, uncontaminated water
Our right to continue to live in our own community
Our right to carry out our indigenous businesses of tourism, food production, farming and agri-food unhindered
Our right to have our elected representatives carry out our wishes
Our right not to have our natural resources used for the benefit of others
Our right not to have our reputation as a clean environment abroad spoiled
Our right not to have our health damaged for the good of multinational companies

Signed ________________

Place of residence __________________
———————————————————————————————————————————————

EU Submission oin fracking
Dead line: 23 March

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/consultations/uff_en.htm——————————————————————————————————————————

Just a note to let you know the European Commission has launched a public consultation on shale gas and hydraulic fracturing and are accepting submissions from all interested parties.  I have attached a copy of a Press Release which I issued today with all the details for your information.  Submissions can be made through the link below and I would encourage people to make a submission in order to have their voices heard –

Link for submissions: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/consultations/uff_en.htm

Also, below is a copy of a written question I submitted to the Minister last week through my colleague Deputy Finian McGrath TD asking if he will consider a publication consultation on the environmental implications of hydraulic fracturing.  As you will see the Minister states in his reply the EPA will launch a public consultation following further research on this issue.   The Minister has not given a timeline for the public consultation in this regard I have sub

Finally I have spoken to Catherine Murphy who is Whip of the Technical Group in Dail Eireann and asked if they would consider putting down a Private Members Motion on this.  She said there has already been some talk on the matter and she will bring this request to the attention of the Group.  She also said it would be very useful for one or two people with expertise to send a short briefing to her on this issue as this could assist with the drawing up of any future Motion.  I will be speaking to Catherine again in the New Year and in the meantime if one or two colleagues could contact me about drawing up this briefing document I would appreciate it.  I will continue to keep you updated as I receive further information.

In the meantime, may I take this opportunity to wish you a Happy and Peaceful Christmas and all that is good for 2013.

Hydraulic Fracturing Policy

138. Deputy Finian McGrath

asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources if he will consider a public consultation in conjunction with the more detailed research study to be commissioned by the Environmental Protection Agency on the environmental implications of hydraulic fracturing later this year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55881/12]

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (Deputy Pat Rabbitte):The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has confirmed that the terms of reference for the second and more detailed EPA research on the environmental implications of hydraulic fracturing as a means of extracting natural gas from underground reservoirs are currently being drawn up by a steering group, which includes representatives from amongst others, the EPA and my Department. In line with the EPA’s policy on openness and transparency and in order to receive comments from stakeholders, the EPA has confirmed that it will launch a public consultation on this draft document and interested parties will be invited to submit written comments in this regard.

It is anticipated that following the engagement of the relevant experts, the study will take in excess of twelve months to complete, leading to a potential publication date in 2014.

Best Regards

Marian

Marian Harkin MEP
28 Emmet Place
Union Street
Sligo

Tel: 071-9150152
Email: marian@marianharkin.com
Website: www.marianharkin.ie
Facebook: www.facebook.com/marianharkin
Twitter: www.twitter.com/MarianHarkin
“MEP of the Year ” Award Winner 2011 & 2012

—————————————————————————————————————————————
Exploration licenses not (yet) given – (18 February 2013)

Sent: Monday, February 18, 2013 11:57 AM
Subject: Fracking

Dear Ms …

I refer to your recent correspondence regarding hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”). Your correspondence has been passed on to me for direct reply as I have responsibility in this area.

I am aware that there has been a good deal of public interest on the topic of onshore gas exploration. While there has been considerable focus on the possibility of the technology of hydraulic fracturing being used, the three Licence Options that have been granted by my Department are preliminary authorisations and the agreed work programmes allow the companies assess the petroleum potential of the acreage largely based on studies of existing data. They are not exploration authorisations and no applications have been made to date proposing the use of hydraulic fracturing in exploration drilling.

I have stated on a number of occasions that any application for an exploration licence that proposed the use of hydraulic fracturing as part of an unconventional gas exploration programme would be subject to a full environmental impact assessment (EIA).  This would entail consideration of the potential impacts of a project on population, fauna, flora, soil, water, air, climatic factors, material assets, including the architectural and archaeological heritage, landscape and the inter-relationship between the above factors.  Under the EIA Directive, it is not possible to permit a project unless it can be determined following assessment that it would not have an unacceptable environmental or social impact.

In this context, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has commenced a process to issue a public call in early 2013 inviting interested parties to tender for the offer of funding from both the EPA Strive Programme and my Department to conduct detailed research on the use of Unconventional Gas Exploration and Extraction in Ireland, in particular with regard to the use of hydraulic fracturing technology.  The study follows on from the preliminary research into the environmental aspects of shale gas extraction, conducted by the University of Aberdeen, which was published by the EPA in May 2012.

The proposed terms of reference for this study have been developed and are currently the subject of a Public Consultation Process which was launched on 11 January 2013.  Interested parties have been invited to submit written comments by 8 March 2013.  Further details are available from the EPA website (www.epa.ie).

I wish to confirm that no applications have been made to my Department to date proposing the use of hydraulic fracturing in exploration drilling.  Furthermore, until there has been time to consider the further research referred to above, the use of this technology in Ireland will not be authorised.

 

I trust this clarifies the position.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

          Fergus____________

Fergus O’Dowd, T.D.

Minister of State

Department of Communications,

Energy and Natural Resources

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer:

This electronic message contains information (and may contain files), which may be privileged or confidential. The information is intended to be for the sole use of the individual(s) or entity named above. If you are not the intended recipient be aware that any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of the contents of this information and or files is prohibited. If you have received this electronic message in error, please notify the sender immediately. This is also to certify that this mail has been scanned for viruses.

Tá eolas sa teachtaireacht leictreonach seo (agus b’fhéidir sa chomhaid ceangailte leis) a d’fhéadfadh bheith príobháideach nó faoi rún. Is le h-aghaidh an duine/na ndaoine nó le h-aghaidh an aonáin atá ainmnithe thuas agus le haghaidh an duine/na ndaoine sin amháin atá an t-eolas. Murab ionann tusa agus an té a bhfuil an teachtaireacht ceaptha dó bíodh a fhios agat nach gceadaítear nochtadh, cóipeáil, scaipeadh nó úsáid an eolais agus/nó an chomhaid seo. Más trí earráid a fuair tú an teachtaireacht leictreonach seo cuir, más é do thoil é, an té ar sheol an teachtaireacht ar an eolas láithreach. Deimhnítear leis seo freisin nár aims odh víreas sa phost seo tar éis a scanadh.

The Department is supporting The Gathering Ireland 2013. Go to www.thegatheringireland.com and Be Part of it!
Tá an Roinn ag tacú le The Gathering Ireland 2013. Téigh chuig www.thegatheringireland.com agus Bí Mar Chuid De! ****************************************************************************************************************
  ­­  

 

_________________________________________________________________________________________
LETTERS TO MEP’S
____________________________________________________________________________________________

Letter and recommendations to MEP’s – Sonic and Tzavela report (November 2012)

MEP letter all MEP’s _internet_

MEP letter attachments

Collected signatures sent to Ineke:Total signatures ROI and NI sent to Ineke

Total signatures ROI and NI sent to Ineke

Talamh letter to MEPs

Talamh commentary Statmt

_____________________________________________

Some answers by MEP’s

Marian Harkin

Dear colleagues,

Many thanks for your emails and for continuing to show an interest in the shale gas/fracking issue.

As you may be aware, I have been closely monitoring the situation in Ireland, and in Europe, concerning shale gas exploration. I have also brought a number of concerned Irish citizens to Brussels to attend various meetings and hearings on fracking, including Leitrim environmentalist Dr. Aideen McLoughlin and independent film-maker Catherine Boyle who is making a documentary on the topic. Also, one of my advisors visited Cornell University in the US in order to learn more from a number of experts.

Furthermore, one of my advisers visited a fracking site in New York state to gain first-hand knowledge of the procedures involved, in particular the negative impact on agriculture.

I have issued a number of Press Releases on the topic and attach some of these below for your information. You may also be aware that when I was a panellist on the Frontline programme on fracking, I outlined my view that I am not supportive of this industry in Ireland. Indeed, next Saturday afternoon I am meeting with a number of anti-fracking campaigners in Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim.

As you know, there are currently a number of reports being drafted in the European Parliament on this issue. To that end, I have co-signed an amendment which calls on every EU Member State to put in a place a moratorium on fracking as long as EU and national rules are insufficiently developed to ensure complete environmental and human safety.

The text of the amendment reads:

“On the basis of the precautionary principle and on the principle that preventive action should be taken, taking into account the risks and the negative climate, environmental and health impacts involved in hydraulic fracturing and the gaps identified in the EU regulatory regime for shale gas activities, urges Member States not to authorise any new hydraulic fracturing operations in the EU;”

I will be lobbying my fellow MEPs to co-sign this amendment in the coming days and of course to vote for it in the Parliament Plenary Session in Strasbourg.

In the meantime, below are a number of links which may be of interest to you:
European Voice article: http://www.europeanvoice.com/article/imported/let-the-shale-gas-revolution-pass/75360.aspx
European Parliament report on fracking: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/committees/en/studiesdownload.html?languageDocument=EN&file=44388
European Parliament press release: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/pressroom/content/20120917IPR51525/html/Shale-gas-member-states-need-robust-rules-on-fracking
My Press Release from 10.10.12: http://www.marianharkin.com/index.php?id=20&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=742&tx_ttnews%5BbackPid%5D=4&cHash=648db9da67e12a8fe8382a2eb677afda
My Press Release from 07.10.11: My Press Release from 10.10.12: http://www.marianharkin.com/index.php?id=20&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=646&tx_ttnews%5BbackPid%5D=4&cHash=db3e393cf8
Please keep in touch if you have any further queries, or any information you wish to share with me.

Kind regards,

Marian

Marian Harkin MEP
European Parliament
Tel: +32.2.2847797
Fax: +32.2.2849797
E-mail: marian.harkin@europarl.europa.eu
Website: www.marianharkin.ie
Facebook: www.facebook.com/marianharkin
Twitter: www.twitter.com/MarianHarkin

“MEP of the Year ” Award Winner 2011 & 2012
——————————————-

Nessa Childers

As the only Irish full member of the Environment Committee, of course Nessa is following this issue closely. Nessa shares your concerns about the serious risks associated with the extraction of this gas and how these risks may cause long-term damage to the environment and impact on human health. The industry has failed to sustain its responsibility to ensure that its practices are safe and to examine the consequences for public health.

Additionally, as you may be aware, the current EU regulatory framework regarding hydraulic fracturing contains a number of loopholes, particularly regarding the fact that the threshold for Environmental Impact Assessments for fracturing activities in hydrocarbon extraction is set above industrial activities of this kind and therefore should be lowered.

Nessa’s political grouping in the EP (the Socialists and Democrats), will vote both now and in the future, in support of strong measures to curtail hydraulic fracturing in Europe and in ensuring that there is a sufficient comprehensive framework at EU level to secure sufficient protection for health, safety and the environment.

The challenge is to convince our ALDE liberal (e.g. FF) and EPP conservative (e.g. FG) colleagues to do the same. As you know there is a large industry lobby behind shale gas. Nessa herself would be in favour of a ban, but the problem for the S&D is that we do not have a majority in the parliament. To achieve a compromise for stronger standards, S&D MEPs have to negotiate with the EPP and ALDE. This will conclude next week.

For sure Nessa will be working towards a strong environmental report at the European Parliament’s Plenary session in Strasbourg next week and will be more than happy to answer any further questions you may have.

Thanks once again, and please do not hesitate to get in touch at any time.

 Sincerely,
Aidan OSullivan
Parliamentary Assistant
Nessa Childers MEP
European Parliament
60, Rue Wiertz
B-1047 Brussels
Belgium
————————————————————

Pat the Cope Gallagher

Thank you for your email concerning hydraulic fracturing and shale gas. The information provided is very timely ahead of the vote next week on the ENVI and ITRE reports.

 

It is my long held position that no further hydraulic fracturing licences, whether preliminary or exploratory, should be issued in Ireland or Europe in the absence of a broader policy on the issue, which takes into account environmental, societal and community concerns.

 

I will be reflecting this position when I vote in Strasbourg next week.

 

With regards

 

Pat the Cope Gallagher MEP
patthecope.gallagher@europarl.europa.eu

—————————————————————————————————————————————

Phil Prendergast wrote:
Thank you for contacting me. The issue of shale gas extraction has come before the parliament for discussion previously and it is a subject which has resulted in many heated debates, both within political circles and within the media in recent years.
While there may be short term benefits involved in the pursuit of shale gas, I agree that these benefits do not outweigh the long term risks to the surrounding land and its population. Examining the situation in the United States and Canada, we can see it is an extremely dangerous extraction method, and one which needs to be strictly regulated where it is implemented.
Therefore, I believe we must learn from their knowledge and experience in this area and work to find alternatives to shale gas extraction. Access to these energy supplies could be a boost to the European Union, but where there are concerns for the impact on the health and the environment of EU citizens, I feel alternative energy solutions must be pursued.  In parliament, while discussing the Environmental impacts of shale gas and shale oil extraction activities report, I supported the amendment urging Member States not to authorise new hydraulic fracturing operations.
I intend to keep monitoring any developments surrounding this issue. Please do not hesitate to get in touch should you feel that I can be of help with this or other matters of concern to you.
Yours sincerely,
Phil

Phil Prendergast MEP

————————————————————————————————————————
TD’S
——————————————————————————————————————–
The Socialist Party is completely opposed to fracking and some of our members have campaigned in both the North and South against it. I attach a link to an article that outlines our position. Thanks and keep in touch.

http://www.socialistparty.net/campaigns-issues/environment/728-what-the-frack

Kind Regards,

Jimmy Dignam
Dail Assistant to Joe Higgins TD
01-6183370
joe.higgins@oir.ie

—————————————————-
Ineke, a chara,

Thank you for your recent email regarding the gas extraction method, hydraulic fracturing or ‘fracking’.

Sinn Féin shares your concerns about this practice and the consequences this exploration methodology has for the landscape.

My colleagues Martin Ferris TD and Michael Colreavy TD have raised these concerns in the Dáil with the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources on a number of occasions. For your information, below is the text of an exchange between Martin Ferris TD and the Minister on this issue.

Please be assured that Sinn Féin will continue to question the Government on this topic and to hold them to account to help ensure the protection of our environment and our local communities.

I trust you find this information helpful.

Is mise le meas,

Gerry Adams TD
Sinn Féin President
TD for Louth & East Meath
—————————————————————
A chara,

Thank you for your email. Deputy Michael Colreavy has consistently and vociferously campaigned both within Leinster House, and outside, against any use of Hydraulic Fracturing ‘Fracking’ in Ireland. As a member of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications, Deputy Colreavy asked the committee to visit the area of north Leitrim where ‘fracking’ is due to occur. He has also submitted questions to the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Pat Rabbitte, on the issue of ‘fracking’. Deputy Colreavy has, and will continue to use, every platform available to him to campaign against the use of hydraulic fracturing.

Is mise,

Seán Ó Sé,

Political Advisor,

Michael Colreavy TD
Leinster House
Dublin
01 6183745
michael.colreavy@oireachtas.ie

 

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________

LETTERS TO THE TAOISEACH
__________________________________________________________________________________________

http://www.sligotoday.ie/details.php?id=22737

Charlie wrote a letter to Enda Kenny:

Question:
“I’m kindly asking you to answer me two questions:

1) Is it true that when you and Mr Corbett discussed the fact both Ireland and Pennsylvania have shale gas resources, you said,

the Republic of Ireland is ‘keen to emulate Pennsylvania’s success in developing these resources’ ?

2) If so, does that mean that the government has already come to decisions if and how shale gas mining will take place in Ireland, despite the fact that the EPA and the Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communication have not come to final conclusions about the feasibility of such undertaking?”

Answer:

In a letter from his Private Secretary I got this answer:

“The Taoiseach has asked me to thank you for your recent email.

During a recent visit to Pennsylvania the Taoiseach met with Governor Corbett and engaged into a productive meeting covering a wide range of issues.

In relation to shale gas in Ireland Minister Rabbitte has confirmed that no decision will be made until the results of the second stage EPA research have been considered,”

As Taoiseach Enda Kenny did NOT answer my first question, but therefore the second one, we can expect that he means it like he said it in Pennsylvania:

Ireland is “keen to emulate Pennsylvania’s success in developing these resources”.

So get prepared, folks. This government is very obviously PRO fracking!


_____________________________________________________________________________________________

LETTERS TO MINISTER RABBITTE
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Environmental Pillar policy on Fracking

Dear Minister Rabbitte

I am writing to you on behalf of the Environmental Pillar, one of the five national Social Partners, regarding the granting of exploration licences for shale gas extraction, and the pending EPA research into the potential impacts of same.  The Environmental Pillar urges you not to issue any consent for exploration licences at least until the 2 year research process is completed.

The EPA research outcomes must not be pre-empted by the granting of licences, no matter what the findings of the exploration companies show. These decisions can only be made when all the salient facts are known, and when there is clarity about the European and Irish legislation pertinent to this very risky process.

Further, and in the light of the requirements of the Aarhus Convention, the scoping of the EPA research project should be a public one, to ensure that all the concerns of civil society and in particular those likely to be most impacted upon, are included in the terms of reference and the research objectives.

The 40,000 members of the Environmental Pillar member organisations look forward to your response. Please see attached their policy on this matter.

Kind regards

Michael Ewing
Coordinator
The Environmental Pillar
Knockvicar
Boyle
Co Roscommon
Rep of Ireland

Tel: +353 71 9667373
Mob: +353 86 8672153
email: michael@environmentalpillar.ie
web: www.environmentalpillar.ie

Environmental Pillar members: An Taisce. Bat Conservation Ireland, BirdWatch Ireland. CELT – Centre for Ecological Living and Training. Coast Watch. Coomhola Salmon Trust. Crann. ECO UNESCO. Feasta.  Forest Friends. Friends of the Earth. Global Action Plan Ireland, Gluaiseacht. Grian. Hedge Laying Association of Ireland. Irish Doctors Environment Association. Irish Natural Forestry Foundation. Irish Peatland Conservation Council. Irish Seal Sanctuary. Irish Seed Saver Association. Irish Whale and Dolphin Group. Irish Wildlife Trust. The Organic Centre. Sonairte. Sustainable Ireland Cooperative. VOICE. Zero Waste Alliance Ireland

Environmental-Pillar-Policy-on-Shale-Gas   (August 2012)

FOI201136RequestandReply

__________________________________________________________________________________________
LETTERS TO THE DAIL – TD’S
______________________________________________________________________________________________

Letters to Politicians (and comment on articles)
by Charlie Williams on Fracking Irelandhttps://sites.google.com/site/frackingireland/

Fracking Letter to TDs  by Oran O’Doherty, Chemistry BA (Mod) TCD, sch
Paper on fracking with images and useful links

People’s Association Watchdog – Submission on fracking

PAW submission on fracking  – 27 Sept 2011
http://www.indymedia.ie/attachments/sep2011/5170592915.pdf
http://www.indymedia.ie/article/100609

________________________________________________________________________________
(SAMPLE) LETTERS TO TD’S, MINISTERS ETC.
_____________________________________________________________________

(Sample) Letter to  Minister Pat Rabbitte.Re: On-shore Licensing for Hydraulic Fracturing   Oct 2011
Informing the minister about the risks of hydraulic Fracturing
Pat Rabitte Letter Oct.
Use this letter (as a sample)  and sent it  to the Minister (hard copy)

Follow up letter(Oct 2011)  to Pat Rabitte   Febr 2012 by Impact_Research_Group odt
Impact_Research_Group pdf

(Sample) Letter to  Minister Pat Rabbitte. Re: Ireland’s future energy needs
Shale gas extraction is no solution for Ireland’s future energy needs.
Letter to Mr Rabbitte Ireland’s future energy needs (sample)
Use this letter (as a sample)  and sent it  to the Minister (hard copy)
By Benjamin and Ineke

Submission on the Draft Frame work forSustainable Development of Ireland (pdf)

Submission on the Draft Frame work forSustainable Development of Ireland (odt)

(Sample) letter to Sligo Councillors to call for a motion to ban Fracking in Sligo.
finalised letter to sligo councillors
finalised letter to sligo coun

(Sample) Letter to Pat Rabitte to inform him and call to ban  fracking              Jan 2012
Letter Pat Rabbitte – inform and call for a ban
Letter Pat Rabbitte – inform and call for a ban (pdf)


Open letter to Pat Rabbitte (as above) http://www.indymedia.ie/article/101264  Jan 2012

(Sample) Letter to Senator Quinn  he said that we should allow fracking to create jobs   Jan 2012
Letter Senator Quinn – jobs (odt)
Letter Senator Quinn – jobs (pdf)

(for addresses see contact politicians)

____________________________________________________________________________________
EPA  and public consultation

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Sean O Donoghue
Environmental Licensing Programme
Environmental Protection Agency

email: s.odonoghue@epa.ie

Dear Sean,

I have been keeping an eye on the EPA website so as not to miss the promised public consultation for the preparation of the new study that the EPA will be commissioning on hydraulic fracking.

I have seen no sign of any public consultation. Did I miss something? When and how will the public be able to contribute to this important preparatory work?

Incidentally, with regard to the University of Aberdeen report, I note that one of the few scientific studies cited in that report (which seems otherwise to be based mostly on articles in the media, judging from the bibliography), and highlighted as an example of a proper, peer-reviewed study, was the study from the University of Texas at Austin, directed by Dr. Charles (“Chip”) Groat. This study was already being challenged by members of the scientific community by the time the Aberdeen report was published, as it does not seem to have been subjected to the normal peer-reveiw process. This study has now been widely discredited with the publication of a report exposing a significant conflict of interest on the part of Dr. Groat (he is the director of a company involved in fracking) that he had failed to declare to the university. The University of Texas has now initiated a review of the study in light of this highly publicised conflict of interest.

Here are some links in case you missed that story:
Public Accountability Initiative report:
http://public-accountability.org/2012/07/contaminated-inquiry/

Bloomberg article:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-23/frackers-fund-university-research-that-proves-their-case.html

Here is a quote from the Bloomberg article about Dr. Groat:
“Groat also sits on the board of Plains Exploration & Production Co. (PXP), a relationship he didn’t disclose in the report, to his boss, or at the Feb. 16 meeting. As a board member, Groat receives 10,000 shares of restricted stock each year, according to company reports. His holdings as of March 29 totaled 40,138 shares, worth $1.6 million at the July 19 closing price. He also receives an annual fee, which was $58,500 in 2011. Houston-based Plains Exploration is fracking in shale formations in Texas, company spokesman Ed Memi said in an e-mail. ”

Considering the well-known sponsorship of the University of Aberdeen by the oil and gas industry, questions of conflict of interest can (and have been) raised with regard to the study they provided to the EPA.

For the new study that is being presumably prepared (although we have not yet seen the public consultation…), it will certainly be important to ensure that whatever study is produced will be irreprochable in terms of conflicts of interest.

I note with interest that the minister for environment of the German state North Rhine-Westphalia has ordered an environmental impact assessment on hydrofracking from several institutes. The applicants were required to sign an affirmation that they
are not working for the petroleum industry.

I think it would be a very good idea if the EPA required any applicants for our study to sign a similar affirmation. Don’t you?

Since I have not seen any sign of a public consultation for the preparation of this study, I thought I would send you this suggestion by email.

I would very much appreciate a response to the following two questions, to sum up:
1. When and how will the public be allowed to contribute to the process of drawing up the specifications for the new study being prepared on the subject of hydraulic fracking in Ireland?
2. When this study is commissioned, will all applicants be required to sign an affirmation that they have no conflicts of interest arising from relationships with the petroleum industry?

Kind regards,

Reply:
No, you haven’t missed anything on the public consultation. This is still on the agenda, but decisions have yet to be made, so I can’t give you any useful information on the how and when, just now.
Thank you very much for the information on the University of Texas study, I was unaware of this. I will be following the university’s review to see if there are any implications for the Aberdeen report.
On your second question, I’m not in a position to answer you on this at present, but I will undertake to put your suggestion to the committee.

Regards,

Sean O Donoghue

——————————————————————————–

Please find attached a letter that I received from Minister Richard
Bruton. It is the most detailed explanation I have seen to date about
the various processes and regulations that would apply to exploration
and production licenses. FYI.

I also attach the list of the members of the Cabinet Committee on
Climate Change and the Green Economy, in case anyone else wants to write
them.

Please note (this is the voice of experience talking) that it is better
to send each minister a letter very clearly stating why fracking is
relevant to his specific department (Agriculture, Tourism, Jobs,
Environment, etc.). If you send a generic “please ban fracking” letter
to all the ministers on the list, they will all forward it to the DCENR.
It was only when I wrote back to Minister Bruton outlining why I thought
fracking was a JOBS issue and asking him to please read my original
letter that I received a response from him.

All the best,

Sarah

PS. If you only choose one minister, my preference would be Minister
Hogan in Environment. I think we need to let him know we think fracking is
his problem (and that he should deal with it by initiating legislation
to ban it).

Minister Bruton responds: – brutonresponsefeb132012
Contact details : Members of Cabinet Committee on Climate Change and the Green Economy

 

 

 Letter to the Taoiseachsking for a Referendum on Hydro-Fracking on the same day as the Children’s Referendum.

 

By Dermot

Letter to the Taoiseach asking for a Referendum on Hydro-Fracking on the same day as the Children’s Referendum.
By Dermot  letter to enda kenny word doc.

letter to enda kenny  pdf

________________________________________________________________

Planning Application Northern Ireland
A planning application has been submitted for a test drill and is being opposed by a local ‘no fracking’ campaign.
email: Planning&Transport@valeofglamorgan.gov.uk
Objection to the planning application no. ’2011/00812/FUL’ by antoine triquet
___________________________________________________________________________

Meeting with Pat Rabbitte – http://frackingglenfarne.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/report-on-meeting-with-pat-rabbitte-td-november-15th-2011.pdf

We had a successful meeting with Minister Pat Rabbitte TD on
15-11-2011. Frank Feighan TD through Pat has secured a link into the
EPA for us. The group consisted of of 5 people from Leitrim  Aedin Mc
Loughin, Robert Doyle, Nuala Mc Nulty, Miriam Hennessy and Myself. Minister Pat
Rabbitte and indeed all present listened and understood our concerns.

I Just put this Blog together to make it easy to share

http://frackingglenfarne.wordpress.com

I will use this Blog to update people about progress in relation to
participation of Locals with the EPA study
Please take an opportunity to comment via the blog.
Maybe it will be useful to measure the depth of concern out there your concerns

Eddie Mitchell   eddiejmitchell@gmail.com

Briefing to minister Pat Rabbittehttp://ubuntuone.com/1r8ZS2pqo89TVSiNwittqm

Report: – Report on meeting with Pat Rabbitte TD November 15th 2011

___________________________________________________________________________________

Letters: asking for information under the Freedom of Information Act about the reasons the licences were given.
Letters sent to all TDs, the president and the United Nations to ban fracking.
People are urged to write their own versions
letter to government

Letter to the president: Mary McAleese, Aras an Uachterain,  Dublin
Letter to the United Nations: Mr. Ban-Ki- Moon, General Secretary, United Nations, Geneva, Switzerland
(Letters to the president and the UN : same text as to the government)

Request for licences letter to politicians

Letter to Arlene Foster

Here is a letter i recieved from Arlene foster (Dept Enterprise & Trade Investment DETI) at Stormont. I asked her to meet with me to discuss the licences handed out in NI to big business. It seems she does not want to meet with me to help me understand and discuss the Fracking Industrys pro’s and cons.
Seems she is too busy….
I will continue to send her letters asking for a meeting.

___________________________________________________________________________________


Early day motion: list of MP’s calling for moratorium on HF – http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2010-12/2292
Letter saskia to UK MP Caroline Lucas

____________________________________________________________________________________

CER letter– Re: Consultation Paper on the High Level Design of the Petroleum Safety Framework CER/11/137 (12) Use this letter as a sample or copy it. Send it before 27 th September 2011 (Consultation paper)
________________________________________________________________________

Submission On Fracking By The People’s Association Watchdog (27th  September 2011)
http://www.indymedia.ie/article/100609
Highlight the Dangers of Fracking to Human Life (pdf)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/p.a.watchdog/?
id=169549489790263&notif_t=group_activity

___________________________________________

 

Written Answers – Tourism Industry

Wednesday, 6 July 2011 Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 737 No. 4
Unrevised
Page  of 157

58.  Deputy Michael Colreavy       asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport       if the potential negative impact on tourism in counties Donegal, Roscommon, Sligo and Leitrim has been or will be assessed following the granting of exploration licences in the Lough Allen basin involving the controversial fracking technique. [18969/11]

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Leo Varadkar):     I have no responsibility in relation to this matter which falls within the remit of the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.
For the Deputy’s information, I am advised by Minister Rabbitte that in February of this year, following an open competition, his Department awarded two year onshore Petroleum Licensing Options to Tamboran Resources Ltd and the Lough Allen Natural Gas Company Ltd over parts of the Lough Allen Basin.
The Licensing Options awarded are designed to allow the companies assess the natural gas and shale gas potential of the acreage. This work will be largely based on desktop studies of existing data from previous petroleum exploration activity. Exploration drilling is not allowed under these authorisations, but shallow geological sampling is permitted. Exploration activity under these authorisations is at an early stage and there is no certainty that it will lead to applications for follow-on exploration licences that would be required before exploration wells could be drilled.
In the event that hydraulic fracturing was envisaged as part of a possible future exploration or production programme, then that activity would be subject to an environmental impact assessment, including an appropriate public consultation phase.
As a prescribed body in the planning process, the National Tourism Development Authority, Fáilte Ireland, would have an opportunity to raise their concerns, if appropriate, at that stage of the process.
http://debates.oireachtas.ie/dail/2011/07/06/00056.asp
_______________________________________________________________________________________

 

________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Dear Minister Rabbitte

 

I am writing to you on behalf of the Environmental Pillar, one of the five national Social Partners, regarding the granting of exploration licences for shale gas extraction, and the pending EPA research into the potential impacts of same.  The Environmental Pillar urges you not to issue any consent for exploration licences at least until the 2 year research process is completed. 

 

The EPA research outcomes must not be pre-empted by the granting of licences, no matter what the findings of the exploration companies show. These decisions can only be made when all the salient facts are known, and when there is clarity about the European and Irish legislation pertinent to this very risky process.

 

Further, and in the light of the requirements of the Aarhus Convention, the scoping of the EPA research project should be a public one, to ensure that all the concerns of civil society and in particular those likely to be most impacted upon, are included in the terms of reference and the research objectives.

 

The 40,000 members of the Environmental Pillar member organisations look forward to your response. Please see attached their policy on this matter.

 

 

 

Kind regards

 

Michael Ewing

Coordinator

The Environmental Pillar

Knockvicar

Boyle

Co Roscommon

Rep of Ireland

Tel: +353 71 9667373

Mob: +353 86 8672153

email: michael@environmentalpillar.ie

web: www.environmentalpillar.ie

 

Environmental Pillar members:An Taisce. Bat Conservation Ireland,BirdWatch Ireland. CELT – Centre for Ecological Living and Training. Coast Watch. Coomhola Salmon Trust. Crann. ECO UNESCO. Feasta.  Forest Friends. Friends of the Earth. Global Action Plan Ireland,Gluaiseacht. Grian. Hedge Laying Association of Ireland. Irish Doctors Environment Association. Irish Natural Forestry Foundation. Irish Peatland Conservation Council. Irish Seal Sanctuary. Irish Seed Saver Association. Irish Whale and Dolphin Group. Irish Wildlife Trust. The Organic Centre. Sonairte. Sustainable Ireland Cooperative. VOICE. Zero Waste Alliance Ireland

________________________________________________________________________________________
POLITICIANS POSITION ON FRACKING
__________________________________________________________________________________________
Ineke, a chara,

Thank you for your recent email regarding the gas extraction method, hydraulic fracturing or ‘fracking’. Sinn Féin shares your concerns about this practice and the consequences this exploration methodology has for the landscape. My colleagues Martin Ferris TD and Michael Colreavy TD have raised these concerns in the Dáil with the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources on a number of occasions. For your information, below is the text of an exchange between Martin Ferris TD and the Minister on this issue.

Please be assured that Sinn Féin will continue to question the Government on this topic and to hold them to account to help ensure the protection of our environment and our local communities.

I trust you find this information helpful.

Is mise le meas,

Gerry Adams TD
Sinn Féin President
TD for Louth & East Meath
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, 21 June 2011
What are Dáil debates?
Priority Questions Energy Exploration

All Dáil debates on 21 Jun 2011« Previous debateNext debate »

3:00 pm

Martin Ferris(Kerry North-West Limerick, Sinn Fein) Link to this

Question 31: To ask the Minister for Communications; Energy and Natural Resources his views on the proposed gas exploration project at Lough Allen; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16096/11]

Pat Rabbitte(Minister, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources; Dublin South West, Labour) Link to this

In recent years there has been renewed interest in targeting the natural gas resource potential of the onshore north-west carboniferous or Lough Allen basin. This potential had been identified in earlier exploration but was not considered commercially viable at the time. In February of this year, following an open competition, my Department awarded two two-year onshore petroleum licensing options to Tamboran Resources Limited and the Lough Allen Natural Gas Company Limited over parts of the basin.

The licensing options awarded are designed to allow the companies assess the natural gas and shale gas potential of the acreage. This work will be largely based on desktop studies of existing data from previous petroleum exploration activity. Exploration drilling is not allowed under these authorisations but shallow geological sampling is permitted. Exploration activity under these authorisations is at an early stage and there is no certainty that it will lead to applications for follow-on exploration licences that would be required before exploration wells could be drilled.

In the event that hydraulic fracturing was envisaged as part of a possible future exploration or production programme, then that activity would be subject to an environmental impact assessment, including an appropriate public consultation phase.

Martin Ferris(Kerry North-West Limerick, Sinn Fein) Link to this

We have both had fracturing in the past, although, unlike the Minister, I am not in denial.

With regard to the Lough Allen project, in particular hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”, as it is known, is the Minister aware of the international concerns in regard to this exploration methodology? In particular, in a number of areas where this methodology was used, such as Louisiana and Texas in the United States, the consequences for people living in the areas were serious due to the detrimental effect it had on the water table, which it contaminated to the point that the water was not useable and residents could not continue living in their own houses. If the Minister is aware of this, he will agree there needs to be a public investigation at least into the consequences of adopting this exploration methodology.

Pat Rabbitte(Minister, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources; Dublin South West, Labour) Link to this

I am aware there are concerns in the United States about the process to which Deputy Ferris refers. When this matter first came to my attention, I did not appreciate that the work going on consisted largely of desktop studies of existing data. Therefore, the notion one could fall into a terrible hole around Lough Allen is not exactly in accord with what is happening. I am also aware that a horror movie is being hawked around the country with the implication that dreadful things are going on in the Lough Allen basin. When I found that all of this was a few chaps in front of a computer screen, I had to take a rain check with regard to what is happening.

If the data suggests there is merit in continuing the process further into exploration, the exploration companies must come back to get an environmental impact assessment and then seek permission. I do not know that this is in prospect at present. If it is, we will consider it when it happens.

Martin Ferris(Kerry North-West Limerick, Sinn Fein) Link to this

I welcome that the Minister is prepared to, let us say, investigate the consequences of fracking in other jurisdictions. I am not referring to any horror movie. I understand a very alarming presentation was made by some group but I understand it had nothing to do with fracking and related more to the consequences for the landscape which result from exploration. However, I have concerns about fracking given the information of which I have been made aware. It has had a detrimental effect on people’s homes and many had to leave their homes as a result of the methodology used. Fracking involves putting pressurised water into the hole being drilled, which expands any cracks in the rock formation and leads to gas escaping into the water. I suggest the Minister needs to get expert advice from jurisdictions where things have gone wrong.

Add your comment

Pat Rabbitte(Minister, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources; Dublin South West, Labour) Link to this

I would be as concerned as the Deputy if the fallout in this case was as he fears. I believe we are a very long way from that and I assure people who live in the area that this is not the case. I am aware there are concerns in the United States and that the French Parliament not long ago banned the practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, as Deputy Ferris refers to it. There are certainly concerns about its application in this jurisdiction.

Gerry Adams TD
Sinn Féin President
Kildare St
Dublin 2

Leinster House                        Tel: +353 1 618 4442
Dundalk Constituency Office         Tel: +353 42 932 8859
Drogheda Constituency Office         Tel: +353 41 987 3823

www.sinnfein.ie
www.leargas.blogspot.com


Dear colleagues,
Many thanks for your emails and for continuing to show an interest in the shale gas/fracking issue.
As you may be aware, I have been closely monitoring the situation in Ireland, and in Europe, concerning shale gas exploration. I have also brought a number of concerned Irish citizens to Brussels to attend various meetings and hearings on fracking, including Leitrim environmentalist Dr. Aideen McLoughlin and independent film-maker Catherine Boyle who is making a documentary on the topic. Also, one of my advisors visited Cornell University in the US in order to learn more from a number of experts.

 

Furthermore, one of my advisers visited a fracking site in New York state to gain first-hand knowledge of the procedures involved, in particular the negative impact on agriculture.

I have issued a number of Press Releases on the topic and attach some of these below for your information. You may also be aware that when I was a panellist on the Frontline programme on fracking, I outlined my view that I am not supportive of this industry in Ireland. Indeed, next Saturday afternoon I am meeting with a number of anti-fracking campaigners in Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim.

 

As you know, there are currently a number of reports being drafted in the European Parliament on this issue. To that end, I have co-signed an amendment which calls on every EU Member State to put in a place a moratorium on fracking as long as EU and national rules are insufficiently developed to ensure complete environmental and human safety.

 

The text of the amendment reads:

 

“On the basis of the precautionary principle and on the principle that preventive action should be taken, taking into account the risks and the negative climate, environmental and health impacts involved in hydraulic fracturing and the gaps identified in the EU regulatory regime for shale gas activities, urges Member States not to authorise any new hydraulic fracturing operations in the EU;”

 

I will be lobbying my fellow MEPs to co-sign this amendment in the coming days and of course to vote for it in the Parliament Plenary Session in Strasbourg.

In the meantime, below are a number of links which may be of interest to you:

Please keep in touch if you have any further queries, or any information you wish to share with me.
Kind regards,
Marian
Marian Harkin MEP

European Parliament

 

Tel: +32.2.2847797

Fax: +32.2.2849797

E-mail: marian.harkin@europarl.europa.eu

Website: www.marianharkin.ie

Facebook: www.facebook.com/marianharkin

Twitter: www.twitter.com/MarianHarkin

“MEP of the Year “ Award Winner 2011 & 2012

—–Original Message—–
From: Marian Harkin [mailto:marian@marianharkin.com]
Sent: Thursday, December 06, 2012 6:03 PM

Subject: Fracking Update – Response from the Minister
A Chara,
Last week, through my colleague independent TD Finian McGrath, I tabled the following question to Minister Pat Rabbitte in the Dáil:
In view of the statement by the European Environment Commissioner, Janus Potocnik on hydraulic fracturing in regard to gaps in European legislation and the need for further proposals at European level,  is the Minister willing to suspend any further progress on this process here; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

The Minister’s response was as follows:
I am aware of the recent comments made by Commissioner Potocnik, with respect to the statutory framework governing hydraulic fracturing, and I am committed to ensuring that the relevant information is available to allow for a detailed assessment of any application proposing this technology.

As the Deputy will be aware the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources requested the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to conduct research and advise on the environmental implications of hydraulic fracturing as a means of extracting natural gas from underground reserves.

The EPA published preliminary research into the environmental aspects of shale gas extraction in the form of a small desk based study, which was carried out by the University of Aberdeen. While the study is a preliminary study it will inform the development of the terms of reference for a much more detailed research study to be commissioned by the EPA later this year. While the terms of reference for this more extensive research are currently being drawn up by a steering group including representatives from the EPA and my Department, the findings of relevant international studies on hydraulic fracturing, including studies commissioned by the European Commission, will also be considered by the EPA research.

The outcome of the further research to be commissioned by the EPA will assist in a robust scientific based assessment of any future application proposing the use of this technology. In the meantime, I can confirm, that until there has been time to consider the second stage of the EPA research, the use of hydraulic fracturing in exploration drilling will not be authorised.

In response to this statement, I am now calling for a full, comprehensive public consultation to be an integral part of the Government’s forthcoming research study on shale gas fracking in Ireland and have submitted another question to the Minister asking if he will consider this.

As you are aware, I and a number of fellow MEPs recently urged all EU Member States to ban fracking while EU and national rules remain insufficiently developed to ensure complete environmental and human safety, and this is most certainly the current situation in Ireland.

In my estimation, this report’s legitimacy as a blueprint for any future fracking in Ireland will only be guaranteed if a full public consultation is undertaken with environmental groups, local and community activists – including farmers, tourism interests and residents –  and all other relevant stakeholders”.

Full community involvement – even in this preparatory phase – is the only way to ensure a balanced, sensible approach to this important study.

I will revert to you once I have received the Minister’s response to my latest question.

Kind regards,
Marian

Marian Harkin MEP
28 Emmet Place
Union Street
Sligo
Tel: 071-9150152
Email:
marian@marianharkin.com
Website:
www.marianharkin.ie
Facebook:
www.facebook.com/marianharkin
Twitter:
www.twitter.com/MarianHarkin
“MEP of the Year ” Award Winner 2011 & 2012

——————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Dear Ineke,

Thank you for your recent email on hydraulic fracking. Please accept my sincere apologies for not replying before now.

I’m including below the link to my contribution to the recent European Parliament’s debates on fracking, in which I regretted the rejection of an amendment which sought to recommend that EU Member States not authorise any further fracking operations on their territories. With the support of the Socialists and Democrats Group, the EP did advocate a cautious approach to fracking pending the results of European Commission studies and proposals for EU legislative action if need be, and set out specific recommendations to this end.

Please be assured that I will continue to press the European Commission, the Council and EU Member States to act on the recommendations set out in this resolution, which is available via this link also.

Yours sincerely,

Emer Costello MEP

Leader, Irish Delegation, Socialists and Democrats Group, European Parliament
Liberty Hall, Dublin 1

Ph. 00353 1 8746109
Follow Emer on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+CRE+20121121+ITEM-005+DOC+XML+V0//EN&language=EN&query=INTERV&detail=3-255-968

 

 

 

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