Brent’s Friends of the Earth lobby parliament on fracking
PUBLISHED: 17:54 22 June 2015 | UPDATED: 10:18 02 July 2015
Climate campaigners joined Brent Central’s MP at the House of Commons to fight against future fracking plans in the borough.
Six members of Brent Friends of the Earth (Brent FoE) met with Labour‘s Dawn Butler as thousands of people around the country took part in “For the Love of”, a mass climate change lobby of Parliament.
Viv Stein, spokeswoman for Brent FoE, said: “With a decision due this week on whether to approve the UK’s first fracking site in Lancashire, it is vital that we put a stop to fracking now. Giving the go ahead to this dirty fossil fuel there could pave the way for more fracking up and down the country, including a proposed site at Park Royal in Brent.
“It would also reduce the chance of preventing irreversible climate change. We need to leave shale gas in the ground and invest in renewable energy instead.”
Ms Butler MP was voted vice chair of PRASEG, the All Party Parliamentary Renewable and Sustainable Energy Group, playing a vital role holding the pro-fracking government to account on this and other climate issues.
She said: “Ending fuel poverty and protecting tenants against excessive fuel bills are high on my agenda. I’m on board - Friends of the Earth are pushing on an open door with me on this, but it’s not so open it’s letting all the energy out.”
Cllr Muhammed Butt, leader of Brent Council, has previously hit out against fracking plans last year accusing the government of “bribing” local authorities into approving controversial projects by offering millions in tax revenue.
He said he would investigate whether powers granted by the Local Act and Planning Acts would allow the council to ban fracking in the area.
He said: “There is a body of evidence which shows that fracking is unsafe and harmful for the environment and our residents tell me that they do not want any fracking or test drilling happening here.
“We did seek legal advice on what action we could take to ban fracking and test drilling in Brent, but unfortunately we are hamstrung by national planning policy.”