How much would you sell yourself for?

A report in the Blackpool Gazette tells how Wyre MP, Ben Wallace

has spoken to Chancellor George Osborne, who is currently considering rewriting the tax regime for mineral extraction, to lobby that a percentage of any profits should be hived off for local use.

This suggests that maybe there is an appropriate amount of money which could adequately compensate local residents for the impacts of fracking on the Fylde.

When those impacts will inevitably include:

  • Industrialisation of our rural area
  • Air pollution
  • Noise pollution
  • Light pollution
  • Vastly increased traffic
  • Degradation to our roads
  • Gas pads every couple of square miles
  • Construction of access roads, pipelines and compressor stations
  • Reduced house prices

and potential impacts could include :

  • Contamination of surface water
  • Contamination of sub-surface aquifers
  • Serious health impacts

you have to ask how large a sum would be required as compensation?

Fracking’s resident cheerleader of Fylde Borough Council, Maxine Chew said:

I would support a small levy but this must not be seen to be money grabbing or anything in any way seen as a bribe to try to cajole residents to accept shale gas extraction. Rural areas do miss out on funding and I think any levy should be fed into helping and improving rural areas, to help parish councils, village hall committees, and residents.

It really doesn’t sound as though she can have grasped the sorts of impacts that her constituents will have to put up with does it?

In reality, we only get one chance to protect our countryside. It is what French retailers call a YAPYAP – “Quand Il n’y a plus, il n’y a plus” – Once it’s gone it’s gone!

We have a duty to protect our local area for those who will come after us. If we let ourselves be bribed into allowing the frackers to do their worst to us we will become the generation that sold the Flyde.

We must not let that happen.

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