FROM UKIP’S DEPUTY LEADER It’s frack­ing great news

STRAIGHT TALK­ING

Midweek Sport - - NEWS -

THE White Throated Needle­tail is a bird not seen on th­ese shores for 22 years.

So you can imag­ine the ex­cite­ment in the ‘twitcher’ com­mu­nity when one was spot­ted up in Har­ris, Scot­land.

Up they went in their droves. They spot­ted it, pho­tographed it, filmed it and even drew it… then splat! The White Throated Needle­tail flew straight into one of Scot­land’s many wind tur­bines.

You’d think the RSPB would be furious. You’d also think they would de­nounce wind tur­bines.

In­stead they came out with the usual tosh that wind tur­bines are needed to fight ‘cli­mate change’.

The RSPB makes hun­dreds of thou­sands of pounds out of wind farms. So to use an old Scot­tish id­iom: ‘He who pays the piper calls the tune’. ON Satur­day, Bri­tish heavy­weight David Price will step into the ring for his re­match with Tony Thomp­son.

Two months ago the big Scouser was knocked out by the for­mer world ti­tle con­tender.

I’ll make two bold pre­dic­tions: the fight will be over in four rounds with a Price knock-out and he will be a world cham­pion be­fore the end of 2014. EN­ERGY bills have been on the rise for over a decade. They have gone up nearly TEN times the rate of in­fla­tion. It’s ex­pected that they will rise by an­other £100 next win­ter.

Fuel poverty has be­come a real prob­lem. It is be­lieved that 4.5 mil­lion peo­ple live in fuel poverty in this coun­try.

Last year it’s reck­oned that 24,000 – mainly old – peo­ple died be­cause they could not af­ford to heat their own homes.

The World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion has es­ti­mated that over 30 per cent of deaths each win­ter are a re­sult of fuel poverty.

This is hap­pen­ing in our own coun­try, Great Bri­tain – the sev­enth largest econ­omy in the world. It’s an ap­palling statistic.

But there is some good news. The govern­ment has an­nounced we have dou­ble the amount of shale gas we ini­tially thought.

We are told that we are sit­ting on an es­ti­mated 1,300 tril­lion cu­bic feet of shale gas. Now I have no idea what this looks like, but I know it’s a bloody lot!

It is meant to be the big­gest shale gas re­serve in Europe.

If this is the case, then we are sit­ting on enough shale gas to fuel this coun­try for many years.

So it’s not just bril­liant news for us – it’s great news for our kids and grand­chil­dren.

Shale gas is im­por­tant con­sid­er­ing Ofgem – the en­ergy reg­u­la­tor – has warned the lights could go out by 2015 if some­thing isn’t done about it.

Of course the hippy bri­gade – the Greens, Green­peace, Friends of the Earth and the like – are up in arms.

And, as you’d ex­pect with any com­mon sense pol­icy or pro­posal, Labour is also op­posed.

Oh and so is the BNP. Strange bed­fel­lows in­deed...

So now we have green cam­paign groups and the Labour Party in al­liance with the big en­ergy com­pa­nies, which are ter­ri­fied of shale gas be­cause they have in­vested so much money in the wind en­ergy racket.

The en­ergy com­pa­nies also don’t want to see cheaper bills for the cus­tomer be­cause it means they are mak­ing less profit.

They are afraid be­cause they can see what shale gas achieved in the United States.

Since shale gas came on­line, en­ergy bills in some ar­eas of the United States have fallen by up to 30 per cent.

This has lifted a large num­ber of peo­ple out of fuel poverty al­to­gether. The dis­cov­ery of shale gas has al­ready cre­ated nearly 600,000 jobs in the United States, which I’m sure we could do with here.

Shale gas has also meant the United States does not rely on coun­tries like China for its en­ergy. It’s even made them an ex­porter of gas. Imag­ine if we could do the same. We would be­come a richer coun­try and we wouldn’t have to rely so heav­ily on the Mid­dle East for our en­ergy sup­ply.

It also might en­cour­age us to stay out of use­less wars.

Shale gas is the fu­ture. It will make up 43 per cent of Amer­ica’s nat­u­ral gas pro­duc­tion by 2015.

China and In­dia are on to shale gas now and have al­ready started to ex­tract it. We need to act.

You’ll hear all sorts of scare sto­ries about frack­ing – the method used to ex­tract shale gas – caus­ing earth­quakes or flames burst­ing out of your wa­ter taps.

Don’t be­lieve it – they are claims made by peo­ple with an agenda. At best they are com­plete ex­ag­ger­a­tions, at worst they are down­right lies.

So folks, I’ll leave you with th­ese ques­tions: Do you want cheaper en­ergy bills? Do you want to see more jobs? Do you want us to sup­ply our own en­ergy? It’s a no-brainer.

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