Thank you for contacting me about fracking, a method of extracting fossil fuels that I have passionately campaigned against for years.
For too long climate change has been viewed as tomorrow’s problem – an issue that will affect future generations. The urgency for change has become strikingly evident, in light of the recent extreme flooding across Europe and the extreme heat that has been experienced in Pakistan and Canada. I fear that without a substantial change to our attitudes towards fossil fuels, these events will become much more regular with increasingly disastrous consequences.
While the crisis in Ukraine has demonstrated the danger of dependence on foreign oil, we should not use this disaster as an excuse to invest in fracking.
It is extraordinary that after concluding this themselves in 2019 the Government has just reopened the door to fracking by pressuring the regulator into stopping the closure of fracking wells. The Government’s position has nothing to do with the energy needs of the country and everything to do with the Conservatives bowing to their backbenchers.
I do not believe this reflects a serious approach to the national interest and our energy security.
We know that fracking is risky, destructive and unwanted in our community and across the country. Britain urgently needs to tackle the causes of climate change and invest in real renewable solutions to our energy supply, rather than simply finding more ways to extract dwindling supplies of fossil fuels.
The best way to deliver a more secure energy system is to accelerate the transition to home-grown renewable and nuclear power. Labour will end the Conservative’s dither and delay on energy policy, and deliver a more secure, cleaner system for all.
I also agree that we need to prioritise and fund energy efficiency, which is why I support proposals for £60 billion of investment over ten years to bring all homes up to energy performance certificate band C. This would save families £400 a year on their energy bills and reduce national gas imports by up to 15%.
Finally, I also agree that we need a windfall tax on the profits of oil and gas companies to help fund an immediate support package to protect families from soaring energy bills.
Thank you once again for contacting me about this issue. I can assure you that I will continue to oppose fracking and support calls to accelerate efforts on energy efficiency and homegrown renewables.