Quakers call on Scottish government to ban fracking

By agency reporter
April 25, 2017

Quakers in Britain are urging the Scottish Government to ban fracking and unconventional gas and oil extraction. In a response to the government's public consultation, Quakers are calling for bold steps to tackle climate change by supporting renewable, efficient energy instead.

Quakers are motivated by faith to cherish the earth and to speak out against climate injustice that causes huge inequalities across the world.

Responding to the consultation, Talking Fracking, Quakers in Britain say they consider that “an energy sector that works in harmony with a safe climate, that provides cost effective energy, and offers equitable economic opportunity and long-term jobs can only be achieved by banning unconventional gas and oil (UOG) and investing in renewable, efficient energy instead."

A recent representative meeting of Quakers said, “We have faith we can tackle climate change and build a more sustainable future, but we know this is only possible if fossil fuels remain in the ground."

“Fracked gas is not the low-carbon solution some suggest and is incompatible with tackling the climate crisis. It is destructive of the environment, land and communities."

John Fitzgerald of South East Scotland Quaker Area Meeting hopes the government puts an end to fracking because “it would pose an unacceptable risk to local communities and our environment. The economic claims in support of fracking are dubious – research shows it would only bring a small number of jobs over many decades.

He said a swift transition is needed “to a renewable energy system, along with more decentralised and community energy. These changes would help us tackle climate change and social injustice. Fracking is just a distraction that would make fat profits for gas companies at the expense of communities and the environment."

Quakers around the country have joined local resistance to proposed fracking developments from Sussex to North Yorkshire. On Saturday 6 May, Quakers will climb Pendle Hill in Lancashire, an area under threat from fracking, to protest against the industry. This is a significant place for Quakers. In 1652, George Fox climbed the hill and had a vision of creating a great movement of people.

* Respond to the consultation Talking Fracking here

* Quakers are known formally as the Religious Society of Friends. Around 23,000 people attend 478 Quaker meetings in Britain. Their commitment to equality, justice, peace, simplicity and truth challenges them to seek positive social and legislative change.

*Quakers in Britain http://www.quaker.org.uk/

[Ekk/4]

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.