Calling Planet Lawson

Hello? Is there anybody there? What’s it like in your parallel universe Nigel?

We read in Hansard that arch climate shale denier and shale gas supporter Lord Lawson of Blaby said

“We have now had a reply from DECC, which is the most complacent reply I have ever seen from any government department, and that is saying something. It says that everything is all right and that none of our recommendations is necessary. The department seems not to be aware of the evidence, including the fact that even now not a single exploratory well has been drilled.”

We checked the date just in case we had somehow managed to invent time travel and return to 2010.

No – the statement was made at 8:58pm on 16 July 2014.

So is Lord Lawson so “complacent” about shale gas that he is completely unaware that exploratory wells at Banks, Preese Hall and Anna’s Road have all been drilled and abandoned? Perhaps he meant to say that the industry have so far been unable to drill an exploratory well successfully?

And isn’t it funny that when it suits these pro-frackers we have people like Peter Lilley telling us that apparently we have had hundreds of fracking wells drilled without incident, but then, to make a different point they try to insist (against some rather obvious evidence) that not even one exploratory well has been drilled.

Lawson goes on to fantasise that:

“We had evidence from Cuadrilla, the most prominent of the companies operating, that, even if there is no judicial review of planning, it takes three years from first preparing the environmental impact assessment to being able to drill.”

But hang on – We don’t have any validated environmental assessments yet but didn’t Francis Egan from Cuadrilla say to Emily Gosden from The Telegraph a couple of months back that:

Cuadrilla hopes to gain planning permission for its two sites, near the villages of Roseacre and Little Plumpton, in time to start drilling at the end of this year. They could then be fracked next summer “in a best case scenario”. “After the initial flow test period, which is up to 90 days, if the flow rates look good then we would want to tie the well into the gas transmission system and flow it for a longer period to assess the flow rate over 18 to 24 months,” Mr Egan said.

That’s 8 months from first preparing an EIA – not 3 years Nigel.

Now it may just be me but it seems that Mr Egan and Lord Lawson can’t both be telling the truth there can they? The interesting question which arises from comparing the two statements is which one of them is misleading the public? Or could it possibly be both of them?

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