In light of the anti-fracking protests taking place in West Sussex, Malcolm Webb, head of lobby group Oil & Gas UK, has called on oil companies to educate the public on the realities of fracking.
He also highlighted the decline in output of Britain’s North Sea based fuel supply and said a trillion pounds worth of investment would be needed to get production levels up to two million barrels per day.
This decline in fuel production has led a number of public figures and organisations to call for the government to support companies looking to ‘frack’ in Britain.
Oil companies need to engage with people
Speaking about the ongoing anti-fracking protests, Webb said: “It is disturbing to see people locking themselves to doors, stopping people going about their business. That can’t be right.
“What [oil companies] have to do is engage with people and explain the realities.
“There’s no proven example of any fracking operations having contaminated an aquifer. It’s half as polluting as coal in CO2 emissions.
“80pc of our homes are heated by natural gas. The idea you could substitute that with electricity is unbelievable. If we’ve got substantial reserves of this nature we’d be mad not to exploit them because gas is so important.”
Green campaigners continue to target energy company Cuadrilla’s offices and Balcombe drilling site where operations have been postponed . Just three days ago, Caroline Lucas, head of the Green Party, was arrested for her role in the protests.
Fracking, a process which involves pumping water and chemicals underground at high pressure to free gas and oil deposits, has led to demonstrations across the globe. A number of European countries, including Bulgaria, the Netherlands and Luxemburg, have decided to ban the process altogether.