Shale gas – import or DIY?


Methane gas being produced on a UK farm using British technology, British construction, British operation.

Bill Butterworth 25 September 15

On the subject of shale gas, I wrote to my MP, Claire Perry, recently and got a reply from this hard-working lady which is of some green interest.

Government policy is for “an energy mix” with nuclear, renewables, shale etc. What MP Perry argues is that “The choice is not gas or no gas, the choice is how much we rely on gas from abroad or whether we extract more in the UK.”

Now, if we (like it or not) really are going to have energy from shale, there is (as MP Perry points out) a choice of ours or theirs, i.e. British technology, British jobs, British profits – or import everything and send the profits and jobs overseas.

There are two reasons, both responsible, why it must be British production. Firstly, we do have a responsibility to the entire population, including the old, sick and unemployed, of the UK to secure energy supply, jobs, the economy.  Secondly, in terms of environmental responsibility, there is nobody in the world with better technology, better regulation and better independent capability to see that we do it right.  “Independent capability” means the wide-spread Members of the British Geological Society and the British Society of Soil Science.  We are capable of being more “green” than any overseas producer.