Fianna Fail is calling on the government to develop a National Strategy on Fracking as a matter of urgency.
Éamon Ó Cuív, the party’s spokesperson on Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, said yesterday that Minister Pat Rabbitte “cannot continue to ignore the serious concerns about the safety and suitability of fracking in Ireland.”
He added: “Given that he has already granted initial assessment licenses to companies to explore the extraction of natural gas in the Leitrim, Roscommon, Cavan and Clare, it is urgent that we develop a national strategy on unconventional gas extraction.
“This process must involve all interested parties and include comprehensive public consultation. The experience of fracking in other countries must be examined and a full cost-benefit analysis of fracking nationally and internationally must be carried out.”
Deputy Ó Cuív also called on the government to work with the authorities in Northern Ireland on the issue.
“In view of the fact that the North West fracking area extends into Northern Ireland, there is a clear need for cooperation authorities in Northern Ireland. As many of the targeted areas are designated under Natura 2000, the European Commission’s Environment Directorate-General must also be consulted on the effects on Natura designations.”
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