Greenpeace target Broxtowe voters

Fracking rigs like this one are a common sight in America
Fracking rigs like this one are a common sight in America

Greenpeace is appealing to Broxtowe voters as the local constituency is named as one of the prime battlegrounds for the General Election.

The activists are calling on voters to use the election to force candidates to make solid promises on shale fracking policy, and will have an “I’m Not Back Fracking” stall on Stoney Street, Beeston, on Saturday April 25 as the organisation asks voters to make sure their parliamentary candidates have a firm position on the industry.

Jane Burd, of Greenpeace Notts, said: “We will be asking people to put a poster in their window. Not saying which party they support, because Greenpeace is not a political organisation, but to remind them to ask their candidates what their position on fracking is.”

“Greenpeace is against fracking because it is not the way forward to a low carbon renewable future that this planet needs and it is not a bridge to renewables - it just ties us in to a future reliant of fossil fuels that have brought us to this tipping point in the first place. We need our political representatives to know that fracking is an important issue that needs to be addressed for the sake of the planet.”

The organisation has identified Broxtowe among other marginal constituencies where it can target voters who have the greatest influence over candidates.

Broxtowe Conservative candidate Anna Soubry said: “I haven’t had people talking to me about fracking on the doorstep. What I have had is people talking about the economy.”

Labour candidate Nick Palmer said: “I support the Greenpeace initiative. It’s partly from concern about the impact of fracking on the water table, and also that I feel a major new investment in extracting fossil fuel is a distraction from our long-term objective of renewable energy supply, clean and contributing to reducing climate change.”

Stan Heptinstall, Liberal Democrats, said: “The Liberal Democrat view is that investment in green alternatives to use of fossil fuels is paramount. A Green Investment Bank has been set-up just for this.

David Kirwan, Green, said: “Three years ago we called for a moratorium on fracking-related activity while the environmental and economic impacts of drilling for shale gas were evaluated. On that basis we’re emphatic and unambiguous in proposing an outright ban on fracking and related extreme energy technologies. Fracking is incompatible with the UK’s climate change obligations.

“There is already around five times more fossil fuel globally than we can safely burn if we are to avoid dangerous climate change. Encouraging a whole new fossil fuel industry is deeply irresponsible and undermines international efforts to secure a global climate agreement.”

Greenpeace says that fracking will put communities and the environment at risk.

A spokesperson added: “There are serious and legitimate concerns about the potential for fracking to cause water contamination, air pollution and harm to wildlife and public health. Fracking sites would entail mass lorry movements, blighting our countryside and villages.

“In terms of local potential for fracking, Dart Energy have carried out exploratory drilling near Retford, and other applications have appeared for exploration near Retford and Radcliffe-on-Trent.”