The PEDL (Petroleum Exploration Development License) system is completely undemocratic and “awards” huge swathes of land to big polluters, despite local residents having no say and no real clue that their land is being offered to the petrochemical industry, and this archaic system needs urgent review
How would you like it if you were a land owner, a house owner or a resident in an are that had just been “awarded”, like some prize in a very odd raffle or lottery, to the petrochemical industry to do what they like with ? To drill under your house if they feel like it ? Without your knowledge or permission ?
Welcome to the great Tory Fracking Postcode Lottery – this scenario has just happened all over the UK, mainly in the North of England, where as Andy Burnham noted (without doing owt about it) “PEDLs are being handed out like confetti”
The Conservatives have basically declared war on the Labour voting North and the early signs of this was the arrest of the Labour Party politician Matt Bryan in Cheshire at Upton fracking site
The Labour Party have won every General Election in the North of England for many years, one has to wonder if fracking would be banned under a Labour government
Saccharin state stooges on the News have been attempting to sugarcoat the PEDL announcements by declaring that the PEDLs have been “awarded” to a number of big polluters such as Celtique, IGas, INEOS, etc, etc
So just how can they describe the PEDLs as being “awarded” ? Was there a red carpet public ceremony where we all gathered to whoop and cheer and eat a bit o’ buffet as our precious environment is given away to the fossil fuel industry ? What has the petrochemical industry actually done that’s so great to be “awarded” huge areas of OUR land ?
The PEDL system is an out-dated system from a by-gone era, and there is no excuse for this system to still be used, especially when the effects of the petrochemical industry moving into an area are likely to be harmful to public health and the environment, and we should be in an era of the precautionary principle taking precedent
In the age of the new politics, where information flows very quickly and, through technology we can all potentially have access to instant democracy there is no need for the government to hand out areas of land without the knowledge or permission of the residents of that area
We are now in the post-COP 21 era where the world has agreed to transfer to a Zero Carbon world as quickly as humanly possible
The petrochemical industry is becoming increasingly seen as the “bad guy” in humanities’ quest to transfer to a fossil free economy, and the PEDL system does nothing to inspire confidence in any of the big polluters
The Trafford Labour Party has gained significant mainstream publicity questioning the validity of the PEDL system
A more democratic system is required, especially as more of the areas that the petrochemical industry wants to work in are on flood-plains, high areas of emvironmental concern and in residential areas
It is time for an urgent review and cancellation of all PEDLs that have already been given out, and an urgent review of the PEDL system
Open and properly publicised public meetings, local surveys and local referendums should be implemented to bridge the democracy deficit and to give the people who the PEDLs are most going to affect a voice on whether the petrochemical industry should be allowed to operate in any particular area
It really is time for this Consernative Party, famous for its U-turns, to back-pedal!