West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper voted in favour of a motion calling for a fracking moratorium at the report stage of the Infrastructure Bill.

MP Rosie supported the freeze on the progression of the bill as she feels the scientific and environmental concerns surrounding fracking have not yet been fully investigated, and feels that appropriate time and research must be taken before any decision can be made. 

Although an immediate moratorium on fracking was not passed, Rosie is amongst a growing number of MPs that want to act now to protect communities and the climate from the high risks of fracking.

Rosie also backed 13 amendments to the Infrastructure Bill to better protect residents, tabled by the Parliamentary Labour Party.

MP Rosie said:
“As a country we need to do more to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, which includes using renewable energy sources. However, the need for renewable energy should not override the substantial environmental and community interests and concerns.

“As I have said previously, my position on fracking is clear, I will not support fracking while there is any question of environmental damage or threats to the safety of residents, and as someone from a science background I have not been convinced of the arguments in support of fracking.

“As the MP for West Lancashire my constituents who live in close proximity to the site are my top priority. I believe residents want to be assured of their safety, not bribed with the inducements of community benefits.

“Whilst Labour have secured 13 changes to the Infrastructure Bill ensuring no fracking can take place unless an environmental impact assessment has been carried out, or in land which is located within the boundary of a groundwater source protection zone, there is still more to be looked at.”

Friends of the Earth Campaigner, Rose Dickinson, said:
“We welcome Rosie Cooper MP’s vote this week for a fracking moratorium, which if passed, would have protected communities up and down the country from the risks of fracking, and prevented a new fossil fuel from adding to the crisis of climate change.

“Although the moratorium was defeated, Rosie Cooper MP is amongst a growing number of MPs who are listening to the hundreds of thousands of people across the country that are united against fracking.

“As the evidence continues to show that fracking poses risks to public health and the environment, we urgently need to follow in the footsteps of New York State, the Netherlands and France by putting a stop to fracking now.

New Clause 19, tabled by Labour, made 13 changes to the infrastructure Bill, which are:

Any hydraulic fracturing activity cannot take place:

a) unless an environmental impact assessment has been carried out;
b) unless independent inspections are carried out of the integrity of wells used;
c) unless monitoring has been undertaken on the site over the previous 12 month period;
d) unless site-by-site measurement, monitoring and public disclosure of existing and future fugitive emissions is carried out;
e) in land which is located within the boundary of a groundwater source protection zone;
f) within or under protected areas;
g) in deep-level land at depths of less than 1,000 metres;
h) unless planning authorities have considered the cumulative impact of hydraulic fracturing activities in the local area;
i) unless a provision is made for community benefit schemes to be provided by companies engaged in the extraction of gas and oil rock;
j) unless residents in the affected area are notified on an individual basis;
k) unless substances used are subject to approval by the Environment Agency
l) unless land is left in a condition required by the planning authority, and
m) unless water companies are consulted by the planning authority 

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