Chair of DEFRA Panel confirms accuracy of Rural Impacts study?
A recent article in the Solicitors’ Journal entitled “Fracking: What you need to consider” discusses issues which need to be considered by conveyancing solicitors in areas where fracking may take place.
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Within the article there is an interview with Andrew Wiseman, a specialist in UK and EU environmental law and the chair of the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs’ contaminated land expert panel.
Mr Wiseman is clearly concerned about the impacts of fracking. Amongst his observations we read that:
“it will be incredibly noisy where the drilling takes place at the well pads, creating localised noise pollution” (Our emphasis)
“You will have a huge number of lorries going on and off the site, not just in the construction and exploration phase but also while the fracking is taking place” (Our emphasis again)
“two-thirds of [estate agents in a recent survey] felt house prices would be negatively impacted by localised fracking, with the majority estimating that values could decrease by as much as 10 per cent.”
He goes on to say that whilst there is no current obligation for conveyancing solicitors to provide information on potential fracking developments to customers there may be an expectation and potential negligence claims if they do not.
Yes – this wise man is the chair of the DEFRA land expert panel, and he does seem to be confirming the accuracy of that previously redacted Rural Impacts Report doesn’t he?