Press Release: Somerset Farmers set to discuss implications of fracking on their land

Press Release January 20th 2014 – for immediate release


On 26th February, landowners and farmers from across Somerset will gather from 7pm at Wells Town Hall to discuss and explore the implications of permitting unconventional gas exploration on their land.  At a time when many local farmers are struggling with flooding and the Environment Agency is facing budgetary cuts, what additional environmental impacts might they expect from this highly controversial technology, against which many European food producers have already been protesting?

With 650 square km of Somerset currently licensed for unconventional gas exploration, and an estimated 2,100 wells required across our county for the industry to achieve its stated production values, many local farmers and landowners can expect an approach from fracking companies at some point in the future.  But apart from the potentially large financial package on offer, what could people expect to happen were they to accept?

Any company seeking a landowner’s permission to drill would also be subject to local planning, as the infrastructure of a ‘fracking pad’ is seen as development.  However, with Mendip District Council unanimous vote last September to communicate its concerns about fracking to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, the government’s strong support of the industry, and a wide range of media reports, public information on the subject can seem difficult to gauge.  It was for this reason that members of Frack Free Somerset, who are organising the meeting, identified a need to create a forum where the experiences of landowners and food producers from other countries could be heard.

People attending the information evening on February 26th will have the opportunity to listen to speakers and to watch a selection of short films, including one specially commissioned on the subject, featuring interviews with local geologists.  There will also be opportunities to ask questions, network and raise concerns.  The meeting is free to attend, but advance booking is welcome.  For more information, please email


Editors’ Notes:

The event link is:

Posted on: January 20, 2014