As regular readers of these pages will know we try to provide balanced reportage and back up data from a wide variety of sources. We never forget however, that our original purpose when establishing Schistehappens was to inform English-speaking residents of fracking related events en France, wherever possible in their own language.
It is now more than three years since the the Sarkozy - led government gave in to massive pressure to cancel the permits for shale gas exploration and exploitation that Minister Borloo had signed ( in secret ) and place the loi Jacob ( albeit in much diluted form ) on the statute books. For this we were thankful but never remotely convinced that it would be the end of the matter. Unfortunately, many of those ex-pats who were excited at the time would appear to now believe that it 'could never happen in France'.
True to say that President Hollande has so far kept to his word and not allowed exploitation although he has of course been careful to point out that in essence he is not opposed to exploration ( along with the Constitutional Council ) and is open to 'alternative methods' of extraction. Needless to say these ( mostly amounting to methods involving propane - yet to be proven anywhere ) would all involve landscape desecration and massive logistics in order to extract yet another fossil fuel at this crucial point in our history and still represent a distraction of investment away from renewables.
Last week, Nicolas Sarkozy ( remember him? ) declared that he would resort to fracking if elected ( clearly no qualms there about repealing his own party's loi Jacob of March 2011) largely due to the jobs that could be created. In truth, the jobs would be a drop in the ocean numerically, be temporary and unbelievably unhealthy Nick. This week Environment Minister Ségolène Royal re-affirmed her party's opposition. Of course, this means ( at best ) a two year period of grace before a more right-wing (to whatever degree) administration once again takes over the stewardship of the country and be it N.Sarkozy or AN Other the chances are that the lobbyists will hold sway.
Here at Schiste Towers we anticipate that by then matters in the UK will be coming to a head and one can only hope that our French compatriots will take due note of the disruption caused. Ed