International groups urge Scottish Government to ban fracking

Dozens of anti-fracking groups and environmental organisations from around the world have signed a letter to Scotland's Energy Minister urging him to ban fracking. 

The letter shows that the global anti-fracking movement is watching as the Scottish Government makes a decision on this critical issue, and highlights the incompatibility of opening up a new frontier of fossil fuels with Scotland's ambition to to be a world leader on climate change.  

Diverse international signatories include our near neighbours in Ireland to East Timor to anti-fracking groups in Argentina. Some of these countries have already fracking bans in place and others are fighting to stop further development of the industry. 

Dear Paul Wheelhouse MSP, 
Minister for Energy, Business and Innovation
The Scottish Government

In 2015, world leaders adopted the Paris Agreement on climate change, committing nations to hold global temperature rise to ‘well below 2°C’ above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit this temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

The present Scottish Government has recognised the ambition of the Paris Agreement and made a welcome commitment to new climate legislation to implement it. 

Yet, such objectives are incompatible with the opening up of a new frontier of fossil fuels. Methane leakage from the industry makes fracked gas a significant driver of global warming, and the remaining global carbon budget is dwindling too fast to allow for the production and consumption of unconventional oil and gas resources anywhere.

As a country that gave birth to the industrial revolution, that has benefited from decades of burning fossil fuels, and that continues to be a net exporter of fossil fuels, it would be utterly irresponsible to open up a new frontier of fossil fuels in the context of the climate crisis.   

The global anti-fracking movement is watching as you and your colleagues in the Scottish Government move towards making a decision about the future of unconventional oil and gas production in Scotland. We urge you to ban fracking and the extraction of all forms of unconventional oil and gas extraction (including shale gas and oil, tight gas and oil and coal bed methane), as you have already done with underground coal gasification. 

It is clear to us – as directly impacted communities and NGOs – from the years we have faced the fracking industry around the world that it brings far more harm than good. In addition to the global climate risks the industry poses, evidence of serious adverse impacts to the water we drink and the soils we grow our food in, to our health and our children’s health continues to mount. 

Acting swiftly to ban all forms of unconventional oil and gas will not only protect Scotland’s people and beautiful environment, but it will send a strong message of hope to communities facing fracking beyond your borders too. 

In hope, 

Friends of the Earth Australia
Friends of the Earth Ireland
Keep Ireland Frack Free
FIS NUA, Ireland
Young Friends of the Earth Europe
Food and Water Europe
Friends of the Earth Cyprus
Collectif Causse Méjean – Gaz de Schiste NON !, France
Collectif Stop Gaz de Schiste Florac, France
Les Dindons Masqués, France
Food and Water Watch, USA
Milieudefensie / Friends of the Earth Netherlands
Greenpeace Nordic
Centre for Environmental Justice/ Friends of the Earth Sri Lanka
Berks Gas Truth, Pennsylvania
Rootskeeper, California
CESTA AT / Friends of the Earth El Salvador
Sahabat Alam / Friends' of the Earth Malaysia
Observatorio Petrolero Sur, Argentina
Ecoloxistes n’Aición d’Asturies
National Toxics Network Inc., Australia
BI lebenswertes Korbach e.V., Germany
Friends of the Earth Japan
Frack-Free Bulgaria
Les Amis de la Terre France
Bürgerinitiative Fracking Frei, Germany
Friends of the Earth, England, Wales and Northern Ireland
Friends of the Earth International
Centar za Zivotnu Sredinu / Centre for Environment
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Amigos de la Tierra, Spain
Consumers Association of Penang, Malaysia
Friends of the Earth US
Friends of the Earth Canada
Mother Earth Movement Honduras
REDES- Friends of the Earth Uruguay
Energy Watch Group
Norges Naturvernforbunds Veterangruppe / FoE Norway's Veteran Group
Haburas Foundation/ Friends of the Earth Timor-Leste
Pro Natura / Friends of the Earth Switzerland
IG Schönes Lünne, Germany
Stoppt CO2-Endlager, Germany
Friends of the Earth Finland
BUND / Friends of the Earth Germany
NOAH / Friends of the Earth Norway
Berliner Wassertisch, Germany