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Anti-fracking campaigners plan 28 day blockade at Balcombe site

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Campaign groups involved in the anti-fracking protests in Balcombe, West Sussex, have planned a 28 day blockade to the drill site.

The site, which is occupied by fracking firm Cuadrilla, has been the centre of much controversy in recent weeks. Several protesters were arrested at a previous demonstration, including former Green Party leader Caroline Lucas, who remains MP for Brighton Pavilion.

But in an email sent to Blue & Green Tomorrow, the campaign group No Dash for Gas suggests that campaigners have no plans to leave the site.

“’28 Days Later’ was conceived at the six-day Reclaim the Power action camp which took place near Cuadrilla’s drilling site in August”, said the email.

“28 Days Later will see groups of friends and organisations from across the UK take on a morning, afternoon or longer to take action against Cuadrilla’s drilling site.”

According to the email, a grassroots survey carried out by campaign group No Fracking in Balcombe Society (NoFIBS) found that 85% of residents in Balcombe did not want the drilling to go ahead, whereas 6% were pro-fracking and 9% were unsure.

A spokesperson for 28 Days Later said, “Even if we could safely extract the fossil fuels we have access to, this will fuel catastrophic climate change.”

“We are the last generation that can pull the breaks on climate change by making a transition to renewable, democratically controlled energy. Government and corporations have repeatedly shown that they are unwilling to take the necessary steps, leaving it up to ordinary people to take a stand. That is what we intend to do at Balcombe over the next 28 days.”

28 Days Later started on Sunday, and on the 29th September, Balcombe is expected to host a ‘Communities Un-Fracked’ mass march where dozens of anti-fracking groups from all over the UK are expected to protest at the site.

Last month, campaign groups in Balcombe also filed a complaint over “heavy-handed policing” after a BBC camera crew recorded a police officer, who was not wearing a number, kneeling on the back of a protestors head.

Further reading:

Green MP Caroline Lucas arrested at Sussex anti-fracking protest

Anti-fracking protestors launch complaint about ‘heavy-handed policing’

Protestors set up Sussex camp to ‘reclaim the power’ from big energy firms

Three facts on fracking

 

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