RSPB welcomes Government consultation on fracking in Sites of Special Scientific Interest

27

The RSPB has today welcomed the Government’s consultation that indicates its intention to ban fracking in England’s best places for wildlife, Sites of Special Scientific interest.

Reacting to today’s announcement Martin Harper, RSPB’s Conservation Director, said: “We are very pleased the Government has indicated it intends to ban fracking in England’s best places for wildlife, Sites of Special Scientific Interest. It’s also good to see this ban extended to Natura 2000 sites – areas that are important for wildlife at a European level. We welcome the fact that the ban could apply to all existing and future licences for fracking.

“Government still intends to permit fracking beneath these sites, which we don’t think is sensible. The wider regulatory regime around fracking could still be improved and we have yet to see a compelling case that fracking is going to be compatible with the UK’s legally binding climate change commitments. But the announcement of today’s consultation is the first step towards protecting some of England most important sites for wildlife from fracking.”

The RSPB will respond in full to the consultation on these proposals and hopes that Government’s final decision will remain to ban fracking in SSSIs and all other protected areas.