Don`t Frack Our Future – Doreen`s Story

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Unconventional gas exploration is threatening the UK. Licenses have already been granted by the Government with little or no community consultation. The scale of the industrialisation and impacts are never discussed.

This film charts Doreen and John’s journey from the shock of the drill rigs arrival to the sickening realisation that their lives and the lives of their family and friends will be profoundly affected. They live in Lancashire within sight of a shale gas well.

Script & References

Hello. My name is Doreen. I live in Lancashire with my husband John and the first I knew about “fracking” was a planning notice on a telegraph pole”. Then suddenly there was a drill rig in a cabbage field near my house. We couldn’t believe it. This is a food growing area!

TelegraphPole

Cuadrilla planning notice, Banks, Lancashire.

CabbageField

Cuadrilla drill rig, cabbage field, Lancashire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Doreen and John are experiencing is the first stage of unconventional gas exploration. A company moves in and builds a well pad. They put up fences and gates and a drill rig arrives.

In Lancashire and Sussex for example they are after Shale Gas. They drill down and then drill sideways through the shale rock. Millions of gallons of fresh water, chemicals and sand are injected to force the rock apart. The sand holds the fractures open letting the gas flow out. Up to 70% of the water and chemicals flow back up laced with toxins and radiation from the shale. UK [1] US [2] [3] [4] [5]

In the Midlands, the West Country, Wales, and Scotland they are after Coal Bed Methane. They drill down and then sideways through the coal. The ground water that is trapping the methane gas has to be pumped out continuously so that the gas can come to the surface. Coal seams are sometimes fracked to stimulate the flow. AU [6]

Some companies have plans for underground coal gasification: setting fire to coal underground, partially burning it and bringing up a stream of carbon monoxide, hydrogen and methane. UK [7]

The government has already sold off licenses for large areas of the country. Drilling for shale gas and coal bed methane has already started across Britain, with over 100 planning permissions granted. There are over 20 licences for underground coal gasification around our coastline!…and the government is poised to sell off licences for more of the country. UK [8 page 7] [9 page 7] [10]

For Doreen & John, maybe for you? for people and animals living near this, there are immediate and unacceptable impacts.

Heavy Traffic US [11]

Trucks5 Trucks6

Dust US [12]

Dust2 Dust1

Air pollution

AU [14] US [15]

Light pollution

Light1 Light2

and Noise!

But this is just the start. Unconventional gas extraction is unlike anything we have seen before… It requires thousands of wells to be drilled. If exploration turns into production, trucks and tankers move machinery and service sites. Pipelines connect sites to compressor stations and gas processing plants. More tankers or pipelines are used to move water and waste to treatment plants.

Marcellus Shale gas drilling pads in West VirginiaQueensland

Doreen and John were worried and concerned when this monstrous industry arrived on their doorstep. Now they see it for what it really is. The industry has powerful friends with vested interests. It employs lobbyists to peddle false promises and lies.

UK [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] US [21]

Unconventional gas is very expensive to produce. The industry needs high energy prices to make a profit.

US [22]

These gas wells decline quickly. Constant drilling and investment are needed just to stand still.

US [23]

All these energy sources are unsustainable. They threaten and damage existing industries and employment.

UK [24] US [25] [26]

The Oil & Gas Industry has a dismal track record. It spends millions on publicity each year to discredit scientific studies and increasing evidence that it is unsafe, high risk and dirty.

Unconventional gas extraction pollutes our air. Air pollution is insidious and can be hard to detect.

[27] [28]

The industry actively pollutes clean drinking water.

[29] [30] [31]

Water that we all rely on for life.

Wells fail, accidents happen, water is contaminated.

[32] [33] [34] [35]

The industry works to divide and undermine communities.

[36]

When problems occur families can find themselves stressed, sick, and trapped in houses they are unable to sell, insure or remortgage.

[37] [38] [39] [40]

Across the planet, people understand the threat of unconventional gas.

In the US, communities are coming together to defend themselves and their right to clean air and water.

In Australia, farmers and communities are locking the gates and taking direct action to stop the industry.

In Europe massive public protests have led to bans and moratoriums.

In Lancashire Doreen & John have found other people in their community, that feel the same as they do, and they are saying NO…

 

 

Further Information Sources:

Catskills Citizens

Shale Bubble

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