Can fracking and farming be good neighbours?


Farming already co-exists quite happily with industry, including existing oil and gas operations, chemical manufacturing sites and even a nuclear fuel production plant in Lancashire.

Provided that the processes conducted by these and other sectors in close proximity to farming are well run and regulated, there's no reason why they can't operate side-by-side and that's just the same when it comes to fracking.

Farmers know this. They also appreciate that the nitrogen-based fertilisers they depend upon to stimulate crop and grass growth are made using natural gas, and that using our own gas rather than expensive imports is a way to keep fertiliser costs affordable. 

Modern agriculture is itself an industrial process: it uses large plant and machinery, relies on HGVs delivering things like fertiliser and taking away farm produce, and consumes large quantity of energy and chemicals. In this respect, farming shares many of the attributes of fracking but we accept them because we know that we rely on the farming community to keep us fed.

If it's successful in the UK, we could one day rely on shale gas to keep our houses warm.

There really is no need to fear fracking's impact on farming.