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National Trust "open" to fracking on its land

Oliver Tickell

24th October 2013

"We all have yet to see what the surface environmental impact of fracking is and when we have seen it, then we would reach a view about it."

"We are waiting for the evidence. We have an open mind."

The National Trust, conservator of many of Britain's most cherished landscapes and buildings, has refused to rule out allowing fracking on its land. "We are waiting for the evidence", Dame Helen Ghosh, the Trust's director general, told the Times. "We have an open mind. We all have yet to see what the surface environmental impact of fracking is and when we have seen it, then we would reach a view about it." 

Previously the Trust had maintained a presumption against fracking on its land because natural gas is a fossil fuel. It maintained this stance throughout the anti-fracking protests in August at Balcombe in West Sussex. Ghosh expressed concern that fracking might "perpetuate a reliance on fossil fuels" but insisted that gas was "less bad" than coal.

However the Trust was opposed to wind farms on its estate. It was very unlikely, she said, that the Trust "would ever promote or allow a windfarm on our land."

 

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