New British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is backing away from his predecessor Liz Truss’ decision to allow “fracking” of shale gas, a British government spokesman said. In this method, chemicals, crushed stone or sand are injected into the soil under pressure to release the gas trapped in the rocks. Because this can pollute groundwater and cause earthquakes, many people find this technique very dangerous.
Truss had just rescinded the ban in 2019. With this, she wanted to ensure that the UK would produce more of its own gas.
During his first question in the House of Commons, Sunak, who took office on Tuesday, said he was behind the Conservative Party’s 2019 promise to ban fracking.
Former UK Economy and Energy Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg said earlier that boosting Britain’s energy supply was an “absolute priority” and that all energy sources should be developed. However, there was much resistance to hydraulic fracturing among the British public. In a poll last year, the British government found that only 17 percent of Britons were interested in hydraulic fracturing.
The vote in Parliament to lift the fracking ban was chaotic last week, which led to Truss’ resignation. Several Conservative Party members rejected Truss’s proposal, but she managed to win a majority. Then there were allegations that lawmakers from the ruling party had been physically forced to agree to allow fracking.
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