Would you Adam and Eve it? Surrey could be backing fracking in our borough!

Perhaps it is not ‘Your Waverley’ that should be listening to the public outcry about oil and gas exploration proposed in Dunsfold – but the Surrey numpties – who could find themselves going the same way as Waverley councillors next year.

Having listened very carefully to residents and groups from Surrey & Sussex, Waverley Council’s new administration has registered its objections:  

Well done’ Your Waverley’s’ first listening exercise was a rollicking success – and there are calls for more

However, it appears that the Surrey numpties who have just declared a climate emerganimated-spider-image-0201ency are speaking with forked tongue. Here’s ‘YW’s Listening Exercise Chairman’s view on the latest missive from his county council colleague – whose kee-jerk response leaves us here at the WW spinning with indignation in our web.

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Is it too much to hope that our county councillors will start listening to their constituents? 

Because if they don’t it could home to haunt them sooner than they think!

 As for you Mr Mike Goodman, the electorate might be wiping that smile off your face anytime soon? Because how bloody dare you say: – “although you (WBC) have chosen to consult with the public in this way it is not a formal part of the County’s consultation or decision-making process in respect of this proposal.”

In other words: You will do what you damned well like despite local objection including that of Waverey Borough Council – the democratically elected body with whom you are duty-bound to consult!

Your arrogance is legendary.

17 thoughts on “Would you Adam and Eve it? Surrey could be backing fracking in our borough!”

  1. After a really good public engagement session with the listening panel, this reply from Surrey is utterly regressive (not that I am totally surprised).

    I have been contacted by a number of residents in the last few days wanting to discuss this issue, but I thought I would start with the basics:

    I am against any fossil fuel exploration in Surrey.
    So are the Waverley Liberal Democrats.
    So is every Liberal Democrat I have ever met.

    Oh, and I do not care whether it is fracking or not – we should be doing everything we can to avoid fossil fuels no-matter how we get them out of the ground!

    My political group is fundamentally against the concept in general, but there is one aspect that is always trotted out (and it was again in the reply from Surrey) and that is ENERGY SECURITY.

    We DO NOT make ourselves or our country more secure in our energy needs by finding more fossil fuels locally. We make ourselves more secure by investing in new and sustainable technologies and breaking that dependence completely. County and National government needs to snap out of this ridiculous notion that we should be digging up our countryside looking to eek our fossil fuels in the name of ‘energy security’ while removing almost all subsidy and investment in technology that would render this sort of drilling activity unnecessary.

    It would also be better long-term for our economy to invest in such technologies (that sort of investment always has positive benefits to the economy as a whole) rather than continuously seek out short-term profit at the expense of our countryside, our climate and residents.

    I will be attending to object in person when this application comes to Surrey County Council, as I imagine will a number of my colleagues from all of the progressive parties.

    1. A question to Councillor Follows……

      The Listening Exercise was welcome but to work communication needs to be two way and WBC needs to keep residents informed…..

      There are two matters of immediate concern to WAD. One is how WBC intends to deal with the common land issue.

      The other is the decision making timetable. According to SCC, the ‘ancillary’ application for the alternative access is due to be decided around 9 September but it seems the second main/substantive application is down to be decided on16 October i.e. five weeks later.

      This a) seems back to front and b) is undemocratic as it requires the public to make two treks up to Kingston. Has Waverley made any representations to SCC on this timetable? Can you shed any light on what is going on? And are you planning and Councillor Williams and officers planning to attend both committee meetings?

      1. This concerns us too WAD, and yes, ‘Your Waverley’ needs to keep everyone informed…

        The common land issue is critical – does YW hold the key to any development taking place on this site? WW hopes its lawyers are on to this one as a top priority?

        As for trekking up to Kingston. SCC won’t give a damn how many times residents are forced to trek halfway across Surrey. Cllr Follows/Williams and YW officers MUST attend – and stand up for the residents of the eastern villages. Because this is only the beginning of drilling, not the end!

  2. Well done for taking a stand. Concern is mounting on this issue but mainly in the immediate area which is affected by these plans. Hopefully, that concern will filter through to the towns and villages the length and breadth of Waverley – including here in Farnham. To-day Alfold and Dunsfold, tomorrow a site in other areas of the borough.

    So grateful that you and your progressive colleagues will be speaking up for the worried residents of the eastern villages when this application goes before Surrey County Council.

    However, residents have little faith in SCC – its highway department consistently ignores serious highway issues, and residents’ concerns. As for mineral exploration – as with clay extraction in Ewhurst, it is all carried out with the minimum of publicity and transparency. It appears to many that the county council does whatever it damned well likes – and to hell with public opinion.

    Please keep everyone informed when you attend the county council meeting – so that we can watch it, and clip it for all to see.

    Perhaps our Surrey County Councillors would like to tell us all where they stand on this important issue?

    Where do you stand Cllr Povey as the councillor for the eastern villages?

    1. Please don’t snub other councillors in WAVERLEY who are also active in opposing fracking & in favour of alternatives to fossil fuels. Mr Follows needs to put aside the “progressive” banner & work across parties with this common aim. If that sounds critical, it is because the current attitude is Energy sapping.

      1. The WW has no intention of “snubbing other councillors in Waverley”who are also against fracking. However, sometimes their silence is deafening.

        So far we have heard almost nothing from the largest group on the Council – Coservatives; nothing whatsoever from the Farnham Residents’ Group who, we understand, are too busy fighting amongst theselves.

        We hear regularly from Labour and The Greens on social media, and the Independent. And, there we were on this blog thinking that Cllr Follows was doing a damn good job working with all the parties, whilst being very social media savvy. It is not communicating with the public that is energy sapping it is the lack of communication.

      2. Kaz, hi. I am absolutely not snubbing anyone – I am about half the reason the listening panel contained not just Lib Dems and greens but also the two conservative ward councillors. What I want is more of them to speak out in public now and behind the scenes to lobby their SCC colleagues.

  3. There are 6 processing refineries in the UK. Each has a different specialisation. They are all based on the coast near major shipping terminals as all gas and oil comes in by sea or pipeline.

    The councillor needs educating. Any fracked hydrocarbons will need to be transported to a refinery. The volume is tiny compared to what’s comming in from other sources and I don’t know which of the privately owned refineries will make the investment to process it. Even less likely with the recent cap on consumer gas prices and the continuing fall in oil company share prices (with the exception of BP). That’s one of the reasons Surrey councillors should divest from oil & gas companys as they are a bad investment.

    Oh yes…. and the tanker fleet that will be needed to pick up the fracked material will be dedicated trucks with a much higher CO2/km than a ship or pipeline and more vehicles on the road network, many of which are in rural areas.

    1. Thank you for this information which is very much appreciated. Please keep in touch with us. WW

  4. I just want to say I take the comments on board about us feeding back to the public on the next steps since the panel. We have written to everyone who attended with that follow up but I will make sure the formal responses are published.

  5. I am curious about Cllr Goodman’s statement that “indigenous resources will result in much shorter distances for those resources”. So is he comparing oil and gas from the North Sea travelling via pipelines to terminals onshore with the Dunsfold site where we will have to endure 30 years of HGV tankers driving to Southampton to carry every drop of oil they extract?

  6. WW, having clearly ditched political neutrality, don’t be surprised if people lose interest. I referred to PF apparently ignoring the support of 2 Tory local councillors whose views have been loud and consistent. The listening exercise had high quality local objectors who at a guess would not describe themselves as “progressives “either. The local greens were not that well informed about the technology despite having Brockham & Horse Hill examples on the door step. Hopefully a more reasoned case against FF extraction in all sites in the Weald will be chosen in future, instead of getting too knee jerk/climate hysteria reactions.

  7. “2 Tory local councillors whose views have been loud and consistent”
    – presumably that is loud and consistent in opposing it?
    Tell us more because I don’t remember seeing anything from any Tory Councillors. Who are they? There was a Tory guy on the listening panel but he didn’t say much. Think he just asked a few questions……..

  8. Please tell us someone? Who were the two Tory councillors who were “loud and consistent” because if we can find them – we will post on what they say – loudly and consistently?

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