Scotland has banned fracking says minister

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No legal ban but policy effectively prohbibits any exploration for unconventional oil and gas 

4th October 2019 by Robert Armour 1 Comment

Scottish ministers have confirmed the government has a no fracking policy, despite campaigners saying the policy falls short of a legal ban.

Paul Wheelhouse, energy minister, told MSPs that the existing policy that prevents exploration for unconventional oil and gas would continue.

The prohibition will be enforced via planning powers, with no licences for fracking being issued to companies.

A legal challenge from petrochemical firm Ineos in 2016 saw lawyers expose the policy, successfully arguing that there was no legal ban in place.   

However prohibition will be enforced via planning powers, with no licences for fracking being issued to companies.

Wheelhouse told MSPs: "That decision followed consideration of many factors including the significant negative effects that UOG development could have on our natural environment and the health and wellbeing of communities, while bearing in mind the overwhelming feedback from the public that this should not be permitted in Scotland.

"After a comprehensive evidence-gathering exercise, we have concluded that the development of onshore unconventional oil and gas is incompatible with our policies on climate change, energy transition and the decarbonisation of our economy.

"Fracking can only happen if licences are issued and we do not intend to issue any licences which would permit that."

Mary Church, Friends of the Earth Scotland head of campaigns, said: "It is of course very welcome that ministers have announced they are keeping the indefinite moratorium on fracking in place, but frustrating that today's decision falls short of the full legal ban that would put the issue to bed once and for all.

She added: “The fact that there has been no fracking in Scotland for the last five years is a huge victory for campaigners and communities across Scotland.”

8th October 2019 by Lok Yue

"The prohibition will be enforced via planning powers Read more at http://thirdforcenews.org.uk/tfn-news/scotland-has-banned-fracking-says-minister#hbjmk0sS1k8fVYjb.99 "And here was me thinking that planning was the responsibility of local government