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              • Pressure against shale gas rules

                September 18, 2014
                by MarcoDC

                A test drilling site for shale gas near Southport, Lancashire - Source: The Guardian (Cooper/Corbis)

                According to a recent report, lobby groups and oil companies brought together to avoid stricter regulations from Bruxelles in shale gas production.

                The report “Fracking Brussels” has been released by the environmental network Friends of the Earth International (FOEI) and conducted by many single contributors.

                It is evidently showed how big oil companies, such as Shell, Total and ExxonMobil went on with lobby groups to influence regulations on the shale gas. That resulted in an intense and continuing lobbying activity, involving different positions, from single representative of industry associations, to the current President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso.

                The environmental networking accuses lobbists to promote the interests of the shale gas industry, removing any controversial aspect of this gas from the debate.

                The oil industry would then hush up any concern about the dangers of fracking this gas, while there should be definite evidences on the environmental and health risks, as it is possible to see also thanks to a previous report showing how the environmental effectiveness is compromised by the lack of emissions’ reduction.

                The activity of fracking is a real threat to the climate and to the local communities, which seems to be excluded from any public debate and not strong represented in Brussels, where the citizens organizations have had a small number of meetings with EU institutions, compared to the industry representative.

                At the end, FOEI also accuses the shale gas lobby of “greenwashing”, acting in the opposite way of his public announcements, where they support environmental safeguards, and attention on the green economy.

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