Two renowned Nottinghamshire beauty spots are at risk from fracking after licences to carry out shale gas exploration underneath the sites were awarded this week.
Controversial proposals that will allow Swiss petrochemical giant INEOS to carry out explorations underneath Sherwood Forest and Clumber Park were approved by MPs yesterday (Wednesday, December 16).
Greg Hewitt, a member of Nottinghamshire Against Fracking, highlighted the ‘devastating’ impact an exploration could have at both sites, and said his group would do ‘everything in their power to stop them’.
He added: “Just as Robin Hood stole from the rich to feed the poor, we want to take Sherwood Forest and the surrounding areas back from people who are only interested in money, and threatening to destroy the Nottinghamshire countryside as a result.
“We’ve been campaigning to keep fracking away from our country parks for a long time, and the outrage we have encountered from residents has made it obvious that fracking is not wanted here.
“Water contamination, a decrease in house prices, noise pollution and even earthquakes are just some of the issues we will have to face if INEOS is granted planning application to carry out the explorations in Nottinghamshire.
But the CEO of INEOS, Gary Haywood, insists that shale gas is ‘one opportunity that the area cannot afford to miss’.
Mr Haywood said: My team has worked incredibly hard to showcase INEOS’ skills and to be awarded so many licences supports our belief that we are the right company to extract shale gas in the UK. The government sees us as a safe pair of hands.”
Mark Spencer, Sherwood MP, said he was “in favour” of fracking – but that fracking companies need to do it “in a safe manner so they don’t cause environmental damage”.