Anti-frackers' claims on new shale gas report

A shale gas drilling rig
A shale gas drilling rig
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Fylde anti-fracking campaigners have slammed the Government’s support for shale gas after a new report claims Parliament had been “misled” over climate change effects.

A new study in the Ecologist said the research, which the Government used to say shale gas was “cleaner” than burning coal, was flawed.

It used the 2013 Mackay-Stone report, to justify shale gas development, but the Ecologist report says it underestimated the amount of gas leakage from wells and over-estimated gas production.

Paul Mobbs, author of the new report, entitled Whitehall's'Fracking' Science Failure, said the conclusions of the McKay and Stone report were in turn based on data from the now-discredited Allen et al (2013) report.

He said: “Using a figure for leakage which was perhaps a half of what it should have been, and using a figure for gas production which was twice what it should have been, the level of impacts which their analysis found is arguably a quarter of what it should be.”

A Frack Free Lancashire spokesman said: ““The Government’s justification for its fracking policy is reliant on the argument that shale gas is significantly cleaner than coal. This new report raises significant concerns regarding the data, methodology and even the equipment used to support the Government’s shale gas policy.

"The Government must now, as a matter of urgency, either defend the evidence on which the Mackay-Stone report was based or investigate fully the conclusions of this new report and impose a moratorium on shale gas development until the issue of fugitive emissions is satisfactorily resolved.”