Derek Lickorish, chairman of the Fuel Poverty Advisory Group, has stated that the protests currently taking place in West Sussex have overshadowed the positive effects of fracking.
He called on the government to continue to back the process and pointed out that one in five Brits are currently struggling to pay their energy bills.
The demonstrations outside energy company Cuadrilla’s Balcombe site have delayed exploratory drilling and, although protests have calmed down, a large police force remains present.
‘The voice of the fuel poor has been lost’
Speaking on the issue, Lickorish told The Times: “The voice of the fuel poor has been lost in the current frenzy taking place at Balcombe. Extracting natural gas from shale has the potential to reduce the cost of gas for heating and generating electricity.”
The Church of England also added its voice to the debate and recently issued a statement calling for people not to view fracking “through a single-issue lens.”
The Church warned against a “blanket opposition to further exploration for new sources of fuel” as this “fails to take into account those who suffer most when resources are scarce.”
Fracking ‘incompatible’ with environmental commitments
In a piece for The Independent, Caroline Lucas, head of the Green Party, said fracking was “incompatible with the Government’s international commitments to keep global warming below two degrees.”
A recent study carried out by ICM Research revealed that 44% of the British public were of the opinion that fracking should take place in the UK. 30% opposed the use of hydraulic fracturing techniques and the remaining 26% were undecided.