As a country we have some important decisions to make around the potential for unconventional oil and gas to help power the UK in the future.
There are still many unanswered questions. How much shale gas or oil is realistically recoverable, and at what price? What are the real environmental effects of fracking, and what would be the effect on local communities? What impact could shale gas or oil production at scale have on climate change commitments? What could be the impact, if any, on UK energy prices? How many jobs might a domestic industry create? How much tax revenue might the government expect? What would the geopolitical implications of a strong UK unconventional oil and gas sector be?
Together with Parliamentary colleagues on all sides of the debate and from all political Parties, I have established the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Unconventional Oil and Gas to consider these questions in a rational, fact based manner. Over seventy MPs and Peers want to hear voices from across the spectrum of stakeholders: utility companies; policymakers and regulators; onshore developers; manufacturers and energy-intensive industries; academics and research institutions; environmental, local community and consumer groups.
This APPG will consider both the potential benefits and the potential problems. It is not a cheerleader for unconventional oil and gas. It is a cheerleader for the facts.
Dan Byles MP