He urged Bolton Council to reject any plans for fracking after the ban on the controversial process was lifted RS News

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The decision to reverse the ban on fracking to be discussed by the council with the local authority is encouraged to maintain its policy of rejecting any plans to drill on land it controls.

Bolton’s Lib Dems reacted furiously to the government’s announcement that fracking can now go ahead in England.

The decision lifted a ban on the controversial process that was put in place in 2019 following concerns about earthquakes.

The Bolton Liberal Democrat group said the Conservatives had broken their election promise and will now allow fracking to restart in England without any scientific evidence that it is safe.

Their leader, Councilor Roger Hayes, said there was great concern among the public that fracking can cause earthquakes, contaminate groundwater, air pollution and have an impact on people’s health.

He said a 2014 DEFRA report predicted that house prices would likely fall by seven per cent within a mile of fracking wells and that there would also be an increase in house insurance within five miles of the wells.

Cllr Hayes pointed out that the whole of Bolton was covered by search areas set aside for fracking companies.

He said: “In 2015 the local Liberal Democrats presented a petition with 2,500 names on it and persuaded the council to refuse any applications to drill on land it controls.

“We will bring a motion to the next council meeting to reinforce that position and also to encourage the government to reverse its decision.

“We need incentives to use renewable energy sources and to start a program to make sure that homes are properly insulated.”

The proposal will be discussed in the council on 12 October.

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