Hands across the Forth against fracking

Anti-fracking protestors will link hands across the Forth Road Bridge this weekend.
Anti-fracking protestors will link hands across the Forth Road Bridge this weekend.
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Fifers opposed to fracking are being invited to join hands with fellow protestors in a chain across the Forth on Sunday (October 11).

Hand Over Our Forth will see campaigners from Frack Off Fife joining campaigners from across Scotland, linking hands across the Forth road Bridge as they call on the Scottish Government to extend its freeze on fracking to cover offshore Underground Coal Gasification (UCG).

Oil and gas company Cluff Natural Resources has three licences to explore UCG in the Firth of Forth, covering large areas around Kincardine, East Wemyss, Kirkcaldy and Largo Bay.

Audrey Egan of Frack Off Fife said: “Algy Cluff has been lobbying the Scottish Government hard on this issue, but we are hopeful that the Scottish Government, local and national, will put environmental and community protection and the rights of ordinary people over the private profits of oil and gas tycoons.

“Campaigners in Fife have worked hard to make sure that the Scottish Government did the right thing by putting in a place a temporary moratorium on fracking both here and across Scotland. But now is the time to make sure that risky UCG is included in that moratorium.

“The consequences of a leak in the Forth are unthinkable,” Ms Egan warned, “with risks to drinking water, marine life and the tourism & fishing industries. UCG has a terrible track-record, with widespread examples of irreversible environment, water and air pollution.”

In a separate move, Fife Council has demanded a moratorium on UCG to allow full public health impact study and consultation and review to be completed.

Cllr Lesley Laird, the council’s depute leader, said: “We want to make the best decisions possible for the people living and working around the Firth of Forth, preserve the local environment and support local democracy. As Fife is one of the local authority areas likely to be most impacted by unconventional energy, we want to make sure that elected representatives, local communities and businesses are fully engaged in decisions that will shape their local area.”