Rishi Sunak’s fracking ban blasted as ‘crazy’ by readers

Energy: Lance Forman calls for more fracking in UK

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Prime Minister Rishi Sunak reinstated the fracking ban earlier this week, yet the vast majority of Express.co.uk readers opposed his decision, according to a new poll. Mr Sunak announced the move during his first Prime Minister’s Questions in response to Green MP Caroline Lucas’ question on the moratorium.

Mr Sunak said that he stands “by the manifesto” on the fracking ban, introduced in 2019. This was later confirmed by his spokesperson. 

The Conservative’s general election manifesto said that the Party would not support fracking unless “the science shows categorically that it can be done safely”.

However, former Prime Minister Liz Truss announced during her premiership that she would lift the fracking ban in areas with local consent to enable the UK to exploit shale gas to maintain energy security.

Mr Sunak previously supported fracking, if local communities were behind it, in a Tory leadership debate with Ms Truss in July. He also voted against a Labour motion to ban the practice last week on Wednesday, October 19.

In a poll that ran from 1pm on Thursday, October 27, to 2pm on Friday, October 28, Express.co.uk asked readers: “Is Rishi Sunak right to keep fracking ban?”

In total, 2,056 votes were cast with the vast majority, 82 percent (1,682 people) answering “no” against Mr Sunak keeping the fracking ban.

Meanwhile, 18 percent (365 people) said “yes” in favour of the moratorium, and a further nine people said they did not know.

Readers shared their thoughts on Mr Sunak’s decision with dozens of comments left below the accompanying article.

The majority of readers argued the UK needed to approve fracking to ensure the nation could achieve energy independence.

One reader, username Hotdog 008. said: “We need home-grown energy. Sunak is mad to ban fracking.”

Username Ady53 wrote: “We need energy. We should be fracking now.”

Another, username Dando, said that Mr Sunak “is wrong not to use every form of energy within the UK to be totally energy independent”.

While username old woman said: “Crazy. Lots of energy just waiting to be harvested at a time we need it and we all lose out as a result.”


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And username Harrydude1234 commented: “2019 was a different time. Now the war in Ukraine is sending prices rocketing. Fracking helps make the UK independent of countries like Russia, Saudi, and Qatar. How about independence?”

Meanwhile, former Brexit Party MEP Lance Forman argued that the energy crisis warranted fracking.

He told Express.co.uk: “This is a national emergency, we don’t need local consent we just need to get on and do it like there is no tomorrow.”

However, other readers are opposed to fracking and have concerns over the environmental damage fracking poses.

Username NotASaint said: “We have enough gas and oil in the North Sea! We do not need this dangerous and polluting fracking!”

And username taxpayernumber3 wrote: “Fracking is a pointless distraction. Onshore wind and solar are already cheaper than shale gas and are only going to get cheaper. All we need to do is invest in energy storage and we could have energy independence within five years.”

Likewise, Sam Hall, director of the Conservative Environment Network, said: “[Fracking] is unpopular, and few communities would approve fracking projects locally, meaning little or no gas would be extracted, despite the high political cost. Instead, the government should focus on building more cheap and popular renewables, including onshore wind and solar where there is local support.”

Speaking after Mr Sunak’s decision, Labour’s shadow climate and net-zero secretary, Ed Miliband said: “Whatever their latest position, the truth is that the Tories have shown that they cannot be trusted on the issue of fracking. The only way to ban fracking for good is to elect a Labour Government.”

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