Anti-fracking Protesters Demonstrate in Ellesmere Port

Posted in: Fracking, United States Water News, Water Contamination, Water dispute
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Photo credit: The Chester Chronicle

Article courtesy of David Holmes | December 16, 2014 | The Chester Chronicle | Shared as educational material

Anti-fracking protesters from across the country descended on a potential fracking site in a ‘show of solidarity and resistance’.

IGas recently set up a test drill rig at Merseyton Road, Ellesmere Port, in its search for methane from both coal and shale seams, with ‘significant gas indications’ revealed in a statement this week.

But campaigners fear water and air pollution if a full-scale fracking operation to extract the gas goes ahead, with concerns around possible earth tremors especially since sensitive facilities like Stanlow oil refinery and the Capenhurst nuclear plant are based nearby.

Campaigners said ahead of Sunday’s demonstration: “Ellesmere Port is (sadly) home to the only operational, unconventional gas rig in the UK and to make things worse they have permission for extraction. The community there need all of our collective support. As such there will be a peaceful gathering at the gates to the site. There will be music, speakers, face painters, plus a lot of other friendly anti frackers!”

Protesters said coaches were travelling from as far away as Brighton to attend the event.

Meanwhile, IGas said it had discovered ‘significant gas indications’ in the shale bed at its Ellesmere Port test site.

In a statement, the company said it encountered a thick section of coal and a ‘very significant’ shale bed of 1,400 ft. It said: “Preliminary analysis suggests both the Sabden Shale and Bowland Shales have been encountered and cores have been acquired across these intervals. Significant gas indications were observed across the shale section.

“The well, including the shale section, is being logged and the logs, together with the cores, will be sent away for further detailed analysis. The drilling of the well has been accomplished ahead of schedule and under budget.”

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