Did you hear the joke about fracking and jobs

We keep hearing it – Cuadrilla repeat it at every turn because they know that it is one of their routes to gaining community acceptance.

We, and many others have questioned the promised employment boom on the basis that whilst a few temporary local jobs would of course be created (Cuadrilla suggest as many as 1,700 for as long as ten years), there are many more jobs in tourism and agriculture, for example, that could be put at risk.

Now a report on a new study in Ohio validates those fears It seems that whilst fracking does temporarily increase sales receipts in a fracked area, this doe NOT translate itself into any growth in jobs.

As Tish O’Dell, co-founder of the group Mothers Against Drilling in Our Neighborhoods (MADION) in the Cleveland suburb of Broadview Heights, said:

“the number of jobs created by fracking should be measured against the possible impacts on industries including farming, dairies and tourism. If you were going to do a really serious study you would look at these things,” she said. “If water is contaminated and fish die, what are the fishermen going to do? If you have parks where people go for peace and quiet, what happens when you turn it into an industrial landscape? If you have an organic dairy and the soil is polluted, what does that mean? These are all valid questions.”

The Columbus Despsatch reported the Ohio Governor,John Kasich, as saying:

“You could have a situation where we are not getting the jobs, [the oil and gas companies are] taking the resources, and all their profits and they’re heading home,” Kasich said. “That is not acceptable to me. Now, we don’t have the conclusive evidence that this is happening yet, but I want you all to know, and I want the companies to know that this is an extremely serious matter, and we expect them to be responsive to the people of this state.”

So next time you hear the one about the jobs, and wonder why some peoples’ laughs sound a bit hollow, you now know why.

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