Chancellor Gives Tax Break to Fracking Companies

Chancellor gives huge amounts of our money to gas exploration companies

The Chancellor has announced enormous tax breaks for companies who want to increase the UK reliance on fossil fuels by fracking for shale gas.  The tax rate has been set at 30% which is far below the current top rate of 62% for new North Sea oil operations and up to 81% for the older offshore fields.

So far there has been little mention of regulation and control to ensure that chemicals used in the fracking process are disclosed or of assessment of the well integrity to ensure that boreholes are not prone to leaking.  The coalition Government has made no mention of any use of micro-seismic monitoring of potential drilling areas to determine the impact on local area.  As far as George Osborne is concerned it is a bonanza for his pals while he misleads the public into thinking that their gas prices will go down.

The truth is that the gas extracted will most likely be sold on the open world market and because of the costs involved in shale gas extraction in Britain compared with the United States, there will be no cheap gas for consumers in the UK, simply large profits for the fracking companies and energy companies at the tax payers expense.

No change there then!

See the letter from the Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change where the six conditions set by the Labour Party for shale gas exploration are set out.

French PM Rejects Shale Gas


Prime minister rejects shale gas

July 12, 2013

PRIME Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault has rejected a call for a rethink in the shale gas debate and said the government will not allow its exploitation in France.

He was speaking after Industrial Renewal Minister Arnaud Montebourg told a committee planning reforms to the Code Minier – which sets the laws on development of underground resources – that he would like to see a state-owned company involved in “ecological” exploitation of shale gas (gaz de schiste).

Mr Montebourg’s challenge to government policy came just a week after Delphine Batho was sacked as ecology minister for criticising a 7% cut in her budget.   He had said that such development would allow the country to cut its imports of petrol and gas.

However, the prime minister replied that the government had two main objectives in its energy policy: to cut energy consumption, and in particular fossil fuel consumption, and to change the balance of energy sources, by reducing nuclear power from 75% to 50% by encouraging a switch to renewable energy sources.

New Ecology Minister Philippe Martin said there was no such thing as “ecological” exploitation of shale gas and received support from Housing Minister Cécile Duflot, of the Ecology Party.

However, other leading Socialists also want a rethink on shale gas policy with Nord MP Christian Bataille – who co-authored a report in favour of starting exploitation – saying that shale gas could allow France to cut its trade deficit, with 85% of that being due to oil imports.

Reprinted from The Connexion


Withdrawal of WFA

The withdrawal of Winter Fuel Allowance has angered many people who have retired to live in a European country which may be warmer in summer, but is often colder in the winter than the South West area of England and has prompted I.L. North West France branch members, Dorothy Green and Eric Green to send an e-mail to HM Treasury for the Chancellor of the Exchequer.  The e-mail and the Treasury reply are posted below :

From: Eric Laurence Green
Sent: 01 July 2013 16:11
Subject: Winter Fuel Payment

Dear Chancellor of the Exchequer,
Did you study Geography when in your school days ? Have you any conception of the size of France and the variation of winter temperatures across this huge country. We live in the Charente where the winter climate is generally very cold in the winter….ice, snow, gales…..that sort of thing. We do not live in the south on the Mediterranean coast sipping champagne as you like to characterise us. Certainly it is often much colder at that time of the year than in most of England.

If you think the correct criterion for WFP is temperature then you must insist on (continuing) that payment to us. You clearly have little regard, if any, for British citizens living in France and we must say it is very sad too to see how happy you are to cloud important issues with outrageous propaganda rather than speak the truth……reminds us of a gentleman by the name of Adolf……but then you’re too young to remember ! Perhaps you missed out on History as well as Geography.

Yours faithfully,

Eric L Green B.Sc.(London)
Dorothy S Green M.A.(Oxon)

Treasury reply :

From: Enquiries, CEU – HMT [Restricted]
Sent: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 11:05 AM
To: ericlgreen
Subject: [UNCLASSIFIED] RE: Winter Fuel Payment

Dear Mr Eric L. Green and Mrs Dorothy S. Green,
I am writing on behalf of Her Majesty’s Government to thank you for your email of 1 July.

Ministers are always keen to receive feedback from people up and down the country, so it is very good of you to take the time to write and to let them have your views. Please rest assured that the contents of your letter have been registered by the Treasury.

Thank you, once again, for taking the trouble to write to us with your views.