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Fracking plans in spotlight

Fracking plans in spotlight

Tuesday 18 February 2014

Fracking plans in spotlight

The Environment Minister faces questions about his plans for fracking in Jersey over fears it could contaminate the Island’s groundwater.

Questions are due to be raised in the States today about Deputy Rob Duhamel’s plans, which he revealed to ITV a fortnight ago. He told them that fracking – a way of extracting gases from deep underground by blasting water into rock at high pressure – had potential in Jersey, saying: “There's not only a taxation opportunity but there's also the opportunity of hooking into perhaps energy reserves that are cheaper than the ones we're hooked into at the moment”.

His comments came not long after he narrowly escaped a dismissal vote on the floor of the House when he reached a last-minute peace deal with Chief Minister Ian Gorst.

Environmental campaigners are against fracking because they say it pollutes water sources and can even cause earthquakes.

Deputy Gerard Baudains has tabled questions for today’s States session asking the minister to commit to a “comprehensive study” of the potential risks before it goes any further.

The question is one of 32 listed for the session, and Treasury Minister Philip Ozouf and Health Minister Anne Pryke are set to answer questions without notice.

Senator Ozouf will also make a statement about the Waterfront development.

Plans for an inquiry into the fiasco around the Co-op plans to redevelop their Charing Cross site were pulled from debate at the last minute by Deputy Roy Le Hérissier, leaving the main Order Paper light. The main items listed for debate are minor changes to Income Support rules, new rules covering the proceeds of crime and legislation covering “aquatic resources”.

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