The shale energy revolution was backed by David Cameron last week who urged the public to “get behind” fracking. Is this a boost for the utilities sector? Only if investment comes reports Mathew Beech.
Last week The Prime Minister David Cameron once again came out in support of shale gas, proclaiming it will help bring down energy prices, and that wells will be developed across the UK in a boon of domestic gas supply.
With this support from the top of British politics, it would appear that fracking would represent an essential opportunity for energy companies, although the protests this week, which led to the headquarters of fracking pioneer Cuadrilla being invaded by ardent protestors and the arrest of the former Green Party leader Caroline Lucus at the controversial shale oil exploration site at Balcombe could cause temporary reticence from potential investors.
Cuadrilla is currently the only shale exploration pioneer in the UK and temporarily suspended activity at the shale oil test site citing concerns over the safety of its staff, residents and the protesters.
However, Cuadrilla’s chief executive Francis Egan, was keen to point out that fracking does not take place at this location in West Sussex. “External groups protesting against hydraulic fracturing at Balcombe do so without any work proposal from Cuadrilla to judge”, he says.
The protestors are campaigning due to fears that fracking could cause earthquakes and pollute the water table – a claim many commentators dismiss as “myths”.