Fracking Myths and Facts
There is much talk about fracking… Some of it is put about by the oil and gas industry, in order to ruthlessly maximise profits. This is similar to the tobacco companies that used to tell us that smoking was safe, or Exxon Mobil denying that fossil fuels cause climate change, when it turned out they knew the harm they were causing all along. In fact, it is even some of the same PR companies that are being paid to do this. Some of these myths are repeated by politicians who should know better.
Myth: “Fracking will provide energy security for the UK”
Fact: The UK is part of an integrated European energy market, which means all the gas produced in the UK is traded on the open market and sold to the highest bidder. The Government cannot therefore ‘reserve gas for the UK’, or control the price. If private companies can earn more money by selling gas abroad, they will.
In fact, the UK currently exports nearly 30% of the gas it produces.
Also, despite what politicians would have you believe, we do not rely on Russia for our gas supply. According to the 2014 Government DUKES Report, 97% of our imported gas comes from Norway (57.4%), Qatar (24.4%) and Holland (15.1%) – but not Russia.
In 2016 the government estimated that Russian gas via the route from Europe would make up around 1% of the UK’s gas imports.
The BBC reported on 18 March 2018 that a spokeswoman for the Department for Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) told them that the UK “benefits from highly diverse and flexible sources of gas supply. We estimate less than 1% of our gas comes from Russia and are in no way reliant on it”.