Fracking: a briefing for Friends
A guide to fracking and how you can take action
Quakers are taking action to oppose shale fracking and other forms of extreme fossil fuel extraction.
Find out how you can take action on fracking and support a better energy system.
"We have faith that we can tackle climate change and build a more sustainable future, but we know this is only possible if fossil fuels remain underground."
Meeting for Sufferings, February 2017.
Under the 2015 UN Paris climate agreement, the UK committed to cut greenhouse gas emissions in line with a 2°C temperature rise above pre-industrial levels, and to attempt to limit this to 1.5°C. According to climate scientists, to achieve this target, the government must keep fossil fuels in the ground.
Shale gas is a carbon intensive fossil fuel that requires a carbon intensive extraction method named hydraulic fracturing - otherwise known as fracking. Quakers in Britain call for a ban on all intensive forms of fossil fuel extraction, including fracking, because extracting and burning these fuels is harmful to people and our planet.
We are committed to working for climate justice. Our action is driven by our belief in equality, justice and respect for the earth. Instead of extracting new fossil fuels, we want investment in renewable, efficient energy that is affordable for all.
Unfortunately, fracking has support from the UK government and wealthy investors. This year, we could see fracking in the UK for the first time in six years. The industry could seriously undermine the UK's ability to meet its commitments made under UN climate deals.
Yet we have the power to resist fracking.
Across the country, Quakers are joining with others to expose the impacts of fracking, challenge the power of fossil fuel companies and build support for greener energy.
All nonviolent action that questions the morality of fracking is helpful. Friends and meetings are contacting local decision makers, writing letters to the local press and attending demonstrations at the Preston New Road fracking site in Lancashire.
Some Friends have raised concerns about fracking through their meetings and developing witness against it. For example, in May 2017 Pendle Hill Quakers held a meeting for worship on the top of Pendle Hill to bear witness against fracking in Lancashire. Over 100 Friends and supporters joined them on the summit of the hill. Hear more about how the day came about in the Q:Witness podcast Pendle Hill, fossil fuels and GE2017.
For a broader overview, listen to the podcast episode below to hear Sustainability & Peace Programme Managers Chris Walker and Sunniva Taylor discuss effective forms of witness against fracking.
Or if you prefer written information about the issue, read Fracking: a briefing for Friends (PDF) to learn about how fracking affects the UK and ways to object to it.
Central support is available to you and your meeting if you wish resist fracking. Please get in touch using the contact details at the bottom of this page to find out more.
To stay up to date on Quaker anti-fracking work and other area of environmental witness, you can:
The Scottish government currently has a moratorium on fracking. No fracking is taking place whilst the impacts of the industry are assessed. In early 2017, ministers announced a public consultation on the issue. In March, Quakers in Britain submitted a response to the consultation, calling for a ban on fracking, and for the Scottish government to support renewable, efficient energy instead. You can read our response here.
Sustainability & Peace Programme Manager
Quaker Peace &Social Witness
Tel: 020 7663 1047