Petition launched to ban fracking in Brent
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A petition has been launched to stop fracking in Harlesden as an energy company seeks to dig for gas in the borough.
Cllr Lia Colacicco, who represents Mapesbury, has set up a petition to stop London Local Energy (LLE) from fracking in Brent as Dawn Butler MP and environment groups urge the council to throw out any proposals they receive.
LLE has indicated it will “revisit” Artesian Close in Harlesden when the Oil and Gas Authority opens its 15th Onshore Licensing Round, the date of which is not yet known.
In a statement, LLE said: “Until recently, producing any oil and gas under London would have been impossible. Thus, exploring for it would have been pointless.
“The White Heather Laundry at what is now Artesian Close London NW10 8RW, was an extremely successful commercial laundry business that drilled a well for water in 1910.”
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It adds: “This isn’t a choice between renewables and natural gas. LLE are as Green as anyone else. We live in London, love our air, our water and our children just like you. We want what you want.”
Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is a controversial process used to extract fossil fuels locked in rock formations thousands of metres below the earth’s surface.
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A mixture of water, sand and chemicals is injected deep underground at high pressure to fracture the rocks and release the shale gas or shale oil.
Ms Butler said: “They will need more than PR and spin to get this round me and the residents of Brent. These proposals would place the facilities right next to hundreds of homes in Harlesden and just a stone’s throw away from a local primary school.
“I won’t let any company put the health of my residents and students at risk, not on my watch. I am urging Brent Council to throw this laughable proposal out immediately.”
Cllr Colacicco, added: “We have started a petition to highlight the strength of local opposition. If LLE think the residents of Brent are going to put up with seismic testing and the contamination of their drinking water in order for LLE to make profits at our expense, then they have seriously underestimated us. Our children’s health is not for sale.
A spokesman for Brent Friends of the Earth (FOE) said: “In the US and in Australia fracking has contaminated drinking water. We know that any process which involves extracting and burning more fossil fuels will make climate change worse. So let’s not do it. The plans suggested may be better than importing gas as we are currently doing but not better than renewables. We should be concentrating on developing renewable energy, and reducing energy use.”
Cllr Eleanor Southwood, lead member for environment, said that the council is absolutely opposed to fracking adding: “We made our position clear in 2013. Any approach by would-be-frackers is not welcome.” LLE has been contacted. To prevent a license to drill being granted go to bit.ly/2sXyZBr.