LETTER: Wake up to the risks of fracking

I sincerely hope the population of Sussex wakes up to the appalling long term health risks we face from shale gas extraction that is due to start imminently.

Up until now, promises have been made in order to sneak this highly toxic process past us by companies which are solely interested in their own profits.

It has been implied it will provide a cheap source of fuel by making comparisons with hugely less densely populated countries than our own.

However, when pressed, admissions have been made, that, in fact, its contribution to our energy demands will only be small. And yet the risks are real and huge.

The financial beneficiaries have tried to dampen down these risks by side tracking us, by admitting to the known seismic damage but the real risks are to our underground water source from leaked highly toxic chemicals that are used and air pollution.

Our vast underground water supply beneath our county can not be later flushed clean and if made undrinkable, where are our alternatives?

Statistical evidence has already shown chronic health conditions, particularly to children living locally to fracking sites. Bearing in mind the nature of the process, only being able to extract from the seam locally, there is need of multiple sites which scars our countryside and spreads its toxic risks.

Appallingly, Government Ministers and The House of Lords have not acted to protect the population from the threat to our health but have passed legislation to help railroad the granting of licences over the heads of local government.

However, all is not yet lost, providing enough of us join in the campaigns centred on Balcombe and Cuckfield which will also affect the thousands of us who live outside this area.

But if recent demonstrations of how the democracy in our country works, it will take a very determined and sustained effort.

DEREK HARDMAN

Downland Drive, Southgate Drive, Crawley