Frack Free Somerset are happy to answer any press enquiries about our concerns around Fracking and its threat to communities in Somerset.

Please email or for comment out of working hours, please call our press volunteer on 07800831929

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Previous Press Releases

  • Tuesday  22nd December, 2015:

Fracking?  Not In My Park Yard?





21st December 2016, for immediate release


Just days after the British government joined nations from all around the world in agreeing to reduce global carbon emissions, it has voted, not only to allow fracking to take place under national parks, but has also announced a new round of Petroleum Exploration Development Licences (PEDLs) across Britain, including eleven newly licenced areas in Somerset and Wiltshire.  These licences allow exploration and production of unconventional oil and gas, which may include fracking.  Because these areas are important and special in terms of nature and wildlife, they have recently been subject to assessment under the ‘Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010.’

It’s not just National Parks that are threatened by fracking after last week’s vote in the House of Commons to allow fracking under protected areas.  Fracking will also be allowed under the following protected areas if they lie within a PEDL licence area: Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs), Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI’s), Ramsar sites, World Heritage sites, National Monuments, ancient woodland, Special Protection Areas (SPA’s), Special Areas of Conservation (SAC’s) and Groundwater Source Protection Zones (SPZ’s), which are the major aquifers that supply the country with its drinking water.

Despite all the evidence submitted during the consultation period by conservation groups and members of Frack Free Somerset to show the deleterious impact that drilling would have for wildlife in these areas, the government has made it amply clear that it is committed to putting its vested interests in the fracking industry ahead of any serious attempt to create a sustainable future for our children.

Frack Free Somerset is concerned about the air pollution, water contamination, toxic & radioactive waste, health effects and industrialised landscapes that affect the communities in which unconventional gas and oil companies have already been working, and points to the growing body of evidence and peer-reviewed scientific evidence continually emerging from the U.S and Australia, as proof of the dangers inherent in this industry.

Frack Free Somerset are concerned that the 7 new licences in North Somerset, just south of Clevedon, through Weston Super Mare, via Steart marshes, Hinkley Point and onto the edge of Exmoor National Park, pose an enormous threat to the communities and wildlife along the north Somerset coastline.  The 4 new licenses, east of Frome, which cross over into the Wiltshire border, affect eleven groundwater source protection zones, which we believe should remain free of oil or gas exploitation.

Members of Frack Free Somerset will resist any attempts by the government and unconventional gas and oil companies to impose this toxic industry on our communities, and will be working in close collaboration with anti-fracking groups across the county, including local groups such as Keep Wiltshire Frack Free.

If you would like to find out more about our campaign, or lend us your support, please sign up to receive our occasional email at and visit out facebook page and group:

(Get the Frack out of the Mendips)


To access a broad range of academic studies on the impacts of shale gas and coal bed methane, please visit Physicians, Scientists and Engineers for Healthy Energy:




Editors’ Notes:


Hi Res map graphic of newly licenced areas available on request via


Maps of Affected Areas here – including key showing Groundwater Source Protection Zones, National Parks, AONB’s, and SSSI’s and more:

And downloadable here:


Info on risks here:


What DECC said about the Habitats consultation:


DECC PEDL Licence Map:



Louise Somerville Williams

(Get the Frack out of the Mendips)

Twitter:  @FrackFreeSom