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Chair’s Report – AGM of FFC

Posted by on March 27th, 2019 with 0 Comments

Chair’s Report for the last year as delivered at the AGM of FFC onTuesday 12th March, 2019

 

2018 has been the year when fracking actually commenced in the UK. With Brexit the main agenda politically our pro-fracking Government has decided to use the smokescreen to push forward its fracking agenda and hoping with so much furore about Brexit, that a lot of it will sneak through.

Although 2018 can be thought of as a year of infamy because of that fracking start, we hope that it proves to be a false dawn and that their machinations in setting up a clear field for development of the fracking industry will  prove to be as inadequately managed as that for our future relationship with Europe.

Our membership number has dwindled this year, mainly due to the data protection rules and our decision to adopt an opt in rather than opt out approach. I believe that this coming year we will need to actively promote ourselves and encourage membership.

Nationally the anti-fracking groups have shown strength and have hindered greatly the onset of fracking. 2019 we hope will prove to be a year when fracking as a fuel source is finally abandoned.

In 2018 we continued to use our recently produced Banner  at events, in order to publicise our existence and support on numerous occasions both locally and further afield.

We have active Facebook and Twitter sites which are well supported and read, as well as our website. Our Facebook site is always a good place to go to pick up information on the latest in     anti-fracking.

We have had more stickers produced and also car stickers, both internal and external types. These have been well received by people attending events where we have distributed them.

There have been letters written to local newspapers from members of our group that have been published through the year.

With the Government trying to change the National Planning Framework to allow fracking more easily, it invoked response against its changes, even from its pro-fracking supporters, because of the precedence it would set, not just for fracking, but for other issues as well.

I attended an Environmental Forum meeting of the Gloucester City Council about fracking in June to put forward arguments against a very pro-fracking speaker.

Various members of the group added objections and suggestions to proposals for the Gloucestershire County Council’s Minerals plan, arguing for a presumption against fracking, rather than for it.

With fracking about to commence in Lancashire, we as a group attended twice to lend our support and voice to those opposed to its starting.

I attended a Reclaim the Power meeting in London in August which co-ordinated response to the industry as fracking was about to commence.

In November we put on our main event for the year at the Royal Agricultural University’s Parkinson Lecture Theatre. At this event we showed the film Power-Trip and followed it with a lively discussion, where many concerns and opinions were voiced and answered. Those in attendance appreciated the event content and the venue.

We hope that in 2019 we will continue to be an active group, promoting education on the subject of fracking and helping prevent its inception anywhere in the UK.

 

Jonathan Whittaker

Chair

March 2019

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