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Sam McBride

Fracking in Northern Ireland: An obscure leak, public health, billions of pounds – and all our futures

Sam McBride


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Controversy: Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to extract fuel remains a source of heated debate. Credit: PA

Controversy: Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to extract fuel remains a source of heated debate. Credit: PA

PA

Controversy: Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to extract fuel remains a source of heated debate. Credit: PA

Six days ago, an obscure website set up by an Argentine-American biologist published portions of a leaked report commissioned by a Stormont minister.

The document reveals serious concerns about proposals which could alter swathes of Northern Ireland, with consequences far beyond the lifetimes of anyone alive today. But they have also created political difficulty for the DUP, exposed yet more absurdity at the heart of our devolved government, and showed the conflict between the increasingly climate change-aware rhetoric of many Stormont politicians and the absence of urgent action to match those words.


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