Fracking ‘not compatible’ with 'preference' for renewable energy, study finds
11 Apr 2017
Research conducted by Cardiff University suggests fracking is ‘not compatible’ with public preference for renewable energy.
Researchers at the university said members of the public in the UK and the US share concerns about the short-term and long-term impacts of horizontal drilling for shale energy.
The US already has a shale oil and gas production industry, whereas the UK is currently developing its own fracking industry.
Cardiff University environmental psychology professor Nick Pidgeon said: “This – and other research we have conducted – shows that the public in both countries clearly want a move toward a cleaner, more sustainable energy system in the future.”
He added that the results of the study “confirm that shale development is not compatible with that vision”.
To conduct the research, a team at the university held a series of deliberation workshops with members of the public in four cities: London, Cardiff, Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. These ‘in-depth discussions’ enabled the investigators to look beyond existing evidence on public views about hydraulic fracturing based primarily in already impacted areas, the researchers said.
“The results showed that shale development was widely seen as a short-term fix leading to an unwanted dependency on finite fossil fuels at the expense of renewables development,” said Merryn Thomas, a research associate at Cardiff University.
Thomas added: “Participants in both countries noted that the majority of proposed benefits, such as specialised jobs of limited duration, would be relatively short-term, while the risks, such as environmental degradation, would almost certainly be longer.”
A full account of the research has been published in the journal Nature Energy.
There are no comments on this article, leave a comment below to have your say