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  #41  
Old 04-08-2012, 09:26 AM
atkin atkin is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 78
Default Fracking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stacky View Post
If you think that Shell are not acting within the law or are making up their own laws you can phone or meet your solicitor this morning and take out a high court injunction requesting that all works be stopped immediately.
http://www.mlaw.ie/news/injunctions-an-outline

If you think that Shell are flouting planning laws and not complying with planning and licences granted you can contact building control in Mayo
County Council http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/BuildingControl/

Also feel free to set up an oil and gas exploration company to sell oil and gas to the Irish state at cost. Just raise around 2 billion for speculation and exploration costs. (A seismic survey ship costs $1,000,000 per,day). The Irish Government or any other Government cannot afford to do so as the successful strike rate is 1 in 20 approximately and is not in the gambling.


In the meantime you do not want any natural resourses touched as yoi sit in your tee pee on a bog watching the contrails of jet planes taking our greatest asset abroad to work in mines and oil fields from Canada to Australia.

Remember "electronic blips" in you bank account pay for your roll ups' hemp shorts and lentils.


You cannot eat scenery (and no Exxon Mobil are not planning to drill in Killarney National Park before you get your dreadlocks trapped in the toaster)

Let us know how you get on in the High Court and Building Control Mayo County Council.
I worked in Silvermines after the lead zinc mine closed.The amount of pollution in the tailings is considerable including cyanide used to extract the silver.They believe about 30% lead zinc remains perhaps it can be extracted in the future.
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  #42  
Old 07-08-2012, 10:31 PM
Earth Repair Earth Repair is offline
 
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Posts: 18
Default Hello there Stacky, How Bad Boy and all

This conversation is going somewhat off topic in relation to Fracking. However, as I stated in my last post there are parallels between Corrib and Fracking. Fracking is the next stage of the process. If Corrib is like a junky probing around for the last vein in his arm, fracking is like that junky running out of veins and having to use his eyeball, or his groin. The fossil fuel high is becoming harder to achieve and we are going to more extremes to get it. We are also up against physical constraints imposed by our environment and we cannot continue to deny that. Please read my comments in this context.

The level of resistance in Erris springs from an acute understanding of the adverse affects from this project. For many in the rest of the country it is like a dream. Until something similar happens in one’s own neighbourhood.


If you think that Shell are flouting planning laws and not complying with planning and licences granted you can contact building control in Mayo
County Council http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/BuildingControl/
Stacky. Many better people than I have already taken this approach. I can draw on their experiences to say that what you suggest is only worth entering into with time, money and energy to spare. I do not have that at present.
I have already referred to the uneven power dynamics in the planning and legal systems that leave ordinary people at a vast disadvantage to corporations.
I’m not going to spend time trying to convince you of Shell's wrongdoing. I have seen too much and it sickens and wearies me. Some evidence is available on these websites and also in the mainstream media if you know how to read between the lines. If you want to find out more in this area you can do your own research.
http://royaldutchshellplc.com/mission-statement/
www.shelltosea.com

Set up an oil and gas company.
Don't be silly. It’s not possible for an individual to do that kind of work. You need a big organisation like a corporation or a state and given the problems with those type of bodies, as you mention further down the thread, we need something else, neither state nor corporation. This proposal raises many more questions.
Perhaps a place to start looking at alternatives might be Bolivia who are arguably the furthest along the road in terms of bringing use of Natural Resources under democratic control, or at least back under state control. (I am as cynical about states as I am about corporations).
In the meantime, the very least this government could do is renegotiate the original gas licensing deals.
Incidentally, the minimal changes that were made by the green party when in power would not have happened was it not for the spotlight shone on the issue by the Erris community, Shell to Sea , the Centre for Public Enquiry and others. It would be lovely if people realised this instead of deriding the campaign.

In the meantime you do not want any natural resourses touched as yoi sit in your tee pee on a bog watching the contrails of jet planes taking our greatest asset abroad to work in mines and oil fields from Canada to Australia.
To correct yr assumption about my ideas on Natural Resources. It would be really foolish to suggest that we shouldn’t touch em at all. The tipi, the hemp shorts and lentils you mention as well as aeroplanes and young people emigrating are all forms of NR.
What I want is the wise and sustainable use of NR which can only be achieved by fundamental changes in the economic, social and political structures of our society and its relationship to the natural world.

You are right about young people being our greatest asset. There needs to be a third choice between leaving and staying behind to make profits for corporations. What that third choice might be is an important discussion that maybe we can begin here.

“You cannot eat scenery”. This is an extremely strange, interesting and revealing comment.
I prefer the word landscape. Scenery suggests something you look at and are separate from whereas landscape conveys a physical space that we are a part of. I have worked as a landscaper and organic grower for many years and a large part of my work has been to explore the capacity of our immediate landscape to support us. It is my experience that the landscapes that produce the highest quality food are also the healthiest in terms of soil, air and water quality, and contain the highest levels of diversity both in biological and social terms.
Your statement illustrates the point I touched on earlier about our culture’s disconnection from nature. If not the scenery, where does our food come from?

How Bad Boy, Hi
I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in doing so as I really don't want to poke my nose into a situation with which I have no involvement.
I do not fully understand this attitude but I suspect it is partly down to a media narrative that tries to reduce issues like this to local ones, irrelevant to anyone from outside the area. The Corrib Gas project has specifically local implications and effects but it is not only a local issue. It affects all of us. The same will be true of fracking if it is allowed to go ahead. How those resources are used affects everyone. In a truly democratic society everyone would have a say in how they are used. We are a long way from this right now.

You can look at resource ownership rights in the same way. You can either own, license or tax them, and if it is deemed that one of those options provides a better return than the others, then the issue of ownership is pretty much unimportant.
Well I suppose rather than ownership the issue is one of power relationships and control.
In most cases the people who are most adversely affected by fracking or by gas extraction are the ones who have the least say over what happens. To use your rent analogy it works fine if you are confident well adjusted and well paid with a good landlord but if you are on a low income and vulnerable in other ways with an unscrupulous landlord you will be exploited. Ireland is currently being exploited by Shell and risks further exploitation by relinquishing control over its vital resources.

What do you mean by "sustained us"? Kept Ireland, a country that doesn't much care for fish, in fish for an eternity?
I have a bream?

Pretty simple really, I mean that if we had retained our fishing rights under sustainable management we could have provided a good proportion of our food needs from within our territorial waters ad infinitum thus reducing our dependence on outside sources for income, making us less easy to push around. Why do you see this as open to ridicule? It would be self evident to a fishing community or anyone else who is aware that they depend on their ecosystem for their livelihood and survival. (We all depend on it of course) By taking a one off payment we may have made short term gains but we lost out in the long run. Things have moved on now. Fish stocks are decimated, behaviour patterns have been established. It will be much harder to turn things around than in 1973.

We aren't exactly verging on the edge of famine...
I wouldn’t be so blasé about it if I were you. Food prices are rising globally along with oil prices. 12 states in the US have been declared disaster areas owing to crop failure caused by drought over this growing season. Ecosystems are becoming more contaminated and the climate is becoming more unsettled making it harder to grow healthy food. We would do well to produce what we can from within our own boundaries.

Not quite, but anyway...
I suggest you get hold of a copy of The Great Corrib Gas Controversy by the Centre for Public Inquiry. It tells the story of how our fossil fuel agreements were eroded over this time with the involvement of Bertie Ahern, Ray Burke and others. Fascinating read. Oddly enough the CPI funding was cut after its publication. It can be downloaded from here:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/19456292/C...u-2hires-Final



So you assume the deal is bad for Ireland.
Why would someone allow it then?

I assume this deal is bad for Ireland because I place a higher priority on clean water, air and soil that can produce healthy food that can grow healthy bodies and minds than I do on a mine that will probably bring some short term returns in the way of jobs and money but will leave the water polluted and the landscape wrecked and the minerals gone out of our control.
Why would someone allow it? I can only guess, greed, stupidity, fear, ignorance or at best, a set of priorities that made them think this was the best deal at the time.

So what do you propose Ireland should do? Halt all natural resource extraction, or create national resource companies?
And now yr really asking. Some kind of national resource organisation that took proper account of social and ecological factors and ensured an equitable distribution of those resources would be great. I do not see this being very feasible right now given the economic, political and social structures we have. The ideal situation would be one where we have far less reliance on fossil fuels and where decisions on the use of natural resources were made by everyone with the well-being of future generations and ecological health as a priority and where our standards for economic value included social and ecological health. For this to happen so many fundamental changes would have to occur as to make this society almost unrecognisable and that’s another story that we could begin to explore here if you like.
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  #43  
Old 08-08-2012, 09:06 AM
Stacky Stacky is offline
 
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[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth Repair View Post
You are right about young people being our greatest asset. There needs to be a third choice between leaving and staying behind to make profits for corporations. What that third choice might be is an important discussion that maybe we can begin here.
QUOTE]

A happy medium perhaps between emigration and still the ability to live and work here is a very good idea.


Offshore oil and gas platforms tick every box on that one.
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  #44  
Old 08-08-2012, 10:44 AM
How bad boy How bad boy is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth Repair View Post
This conversation is going somewhat off topic in relation to Fracking. However, as I stated in my last post there are parallels between Corrib and Fracking. Fracking is the next stage of the process. If Corrib is like a junky probing around for the last vein in his arm, fracking is like that junky running out of veins and having to use his eyeball, or his groin. The fossil fuel high is becoming harder to achieve and we are going to more extremes to get it. We are also up against physical constraints imposed by our environment and we cannot continue to deny that. Please read my comments in this context.


http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/BuildingControl/[/I] Stacky. Many better people than I have already taken this approach. I can draw on their experiences to say that what you suggest is only worth entering into with time, money and energy to spare. I do not have that at present.
I have already referred to the uneven power dynamics in the planning and legal systems that leave ordinary people at a vast disadvantage to corporations.
I’m not going to spend time trying to convince you of Shell's wrongdoing. I have seen too much and it sickens and wearies me. Some evidence is available on these websites and also in the mainstream media if you know how to read between the lines. If you want to find out more in this area you can do your own research.
http://royaldutchshellplc.com/mission-statement/
www.shelltosea.com

Perhaps a place to start looking at alternatives might be Bolivia who are arguably the furthest along the road in terms of bringing use of Natural Resources under democratic control, or at least back under state control. (I am as cynical about states as I am about corporations).
In the meantime, the very least this government could do is renegotiate the original gas licensing deals.

In a truly democratic society everyone would have a say in how they are used. We are a long way from this right now.

You can look at resource ownership rights in the same way. You can either own, license or tax them, and if it is deemed that one of those options provides a better return than the others, then the issue of ownership is pretty much unimportant.
Well I suppose rather than ownership the issue is one of power relationships and control.
In most cases the people who are most adversely affected by fracking or by gas extraction are the ones who have the least say over what happens. To use your rent analogy it works fine if you are confident well adjusted and well paid with a good landlord but if you are on a low income and vulnerable in other ways with an unscrupulous landlord you will be exploited. Ireland is currently being exploited by Shell and risks further exploitation by relinquishing control over its vital resources.

Pretty simple really, I mean that if we had retained our fishing rights under sustainable management we could have provided a good proportion of our food needs from within our territorial waters ad infinitum thus reducing our dependence on outside sources for income, making us less easy to push around. Why do you see this as open to ridicule? It would be self evident to a fishing community or anyone else who is aware that they depend on their ecosystem for their livelihood and survival. (We all depend on it of course) By taking a one off payment we may have made short term gains but we lost out in the long run. Things have moved on now. Fish stocks are decimated, behaviour patterns have been established. It will be much harder to turn things around than in 1973.

We aren't exactly verging on the edge of famine...
I wouldn’t be so blasé about it if I were you. Food prices are rising globally along with oil prices. 12 states in the US have been declared disaster areas owing to crop failure caused by drought over this growing season. Ecosystems are becoming more contaminated and the climate is becoming more unsettled making it harder to grow healthy food. We would do well to produce what we can from within our own boundaries.

Not quite, but anyway...
I suggest you get hold of a copy of The Great Corrib Gas Controversy by the Centre for Public Inquiry. It tells the story of how our fossil fuel agreements were eroded over this time with the involvement of Bertie Ahern, Ray Burke and others. Fascinating read. Oddly enough the CPI funding was cut after its publication. It can be downloaded from here:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/19456292/C...u-2hires-Final



So you assume the deal is bad for Ireland.
Why would someone allow it then?

I assume this deal is bad for Ireland because I place a higher priority on clean water, air and soil that can produce healthy food that can grow healthy bodies and minds than I do on a mine that will probably bring some short term returns in the way of jobs and money but will leave the water polluted and the landscape wrecked and the minerals gone out of our control.
Why would someone allow it? I can only guess, greed, stupidity, fear, ignorance or at best, a set of priorities that made them think this was the best deal at the time.

So what do you propose Ireland should do? Halt all natural resource extraction, or create national resource companies?
And now yr really asking. Some kind of national resource organisation that took proper account of social and ecological factors and ensured an equitable distribution of those resources would be great. I do not see this being very feasible right now given the economic, political and social structures we have. The ideal situation would be one where we have far less reliance on fossil fuels and where decisions on the use of natural resources were made by everyone with the well-being of future generations and ecological health as a priority and where our standards for economic value included social and ecological health. For this to happen so many fundamental changes would have to occur as to make this society almost unrecognisable and that’s another story that we could begin to explore here if you like.
To pull at two threads there:
Bit on bold:
That would mean decisions will not be made by anyone. It is entirely impossible to get full consensus on natural resource exploration.

Is there anything that can be done to convince some militant environmentalists that taking oil from Irish waters is something that should be done?
No.

So aiming to please everyone will please no-one. You need to judge who you're willing to upset.


For the bit in italics, I would agree, it would require a governmental, cultural, and psychological change for it to work.
It's for that reason that I think it's pretty unrealistic to expect Ireland to put environmentalism above everything. Sure, it's a nice ambition, but it's simply unrealistic and ignores both the current reality and historical example.

That's not to say that we can't do pretty responsible development, and, by in large, Ireland isn't too bad by way of development.

But occasionally, you need to make compromises, and sometimes, the environment comes second in those compromises. As in the case with the EU fisheries policy. The EU pumped a huge amount of money into an ailing Irish economy and, by in large, Irish people didn't give a shit about fish.

Irish people still barely eat fish compared to most other Europeans. So to suggest that it could be a main food source is to pretend there is a situation that would either create a massive cultural shift or that Irish people would be forced to do it.


As for food security, as long as Ireland stays an open market economy, then Ireland's food supply is secure. not only are Ireland's on-shore productive capacities far, far in excess of our needs.
Ireland produces 70 million chickens, ~half a billion eggs, 6.5 million cattle, producing 5.4 billion litres of milk, 1.5 million pigs, almost 400,000 tonnes of cereal, and 450,000 tonnes of potatoes.

All of this is achieved with only 5% of the workforce (or about 2.5% of the people in the country) doing the production, for just over 4 million people.

Ireland is a land of abundant food resources. And due to comparative advantage, Ireland turns massive software exports into food imports. This is a very important point, often lost on people who go on about 'self-sufficiency'


Finally, natural resource companies have a poor record, and when it comes to ecological damage, a mix of inexperience and incompetence frequently results in disaster.

As I said before, if you want to see ecological devastation on a massive scale, look no further than Bord Na Móna. They have been the driver behind the destruction of 80% of Ireland's bogland.

There are only a tiny handful of state run natural resource companies that both make profits and act in an ethical way. Chinese coal makes a fortune, but it's all owned by the government and almost 4,000 workers die a year in Chinese coal mines.

Not to mention the horrific environmental devastation.

Ireland could possibly do it.

But very, very few Irish semi-state companies are run well. If it is poorly run, it'll both cost more money and cause greater environmental damage than someone who actually knows what they're doing and has done it before.

As for Bolivia, since nationalisation, management standards have declined and there have been numerous issues with corruption.
http://bolivianthoughts.com/2012/07/...tionalization/
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  #45  
Old 30-08-2012, 11:36 PM
Earth Repair Earth Repair is offline
 
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Default Fracking, Fish, Food, Economics, Humans in Nature

Hi there, this response has been brewing for some time. Here goes.
I'm gonna respond to a few points in a way that will hopefully point in the direction of sanity (even if we all live so far from it that we can't remember what it looks or feels like.)

A happy medium perhaps between emigration and still the ability to live and work here is a very good idea.
Offshore oil and gas platforms tick every box on that one.


Stacky, you seem to have come around to one of the original positions of Shell to Sea which was to move the refining of the gas out to sea. Hence the name. For the current aims follow this link; http://www.shelltosea.com/content/campaign-aims


For the bit in italics, I would agree, it would require a governmental, cultural, and psychological change for it to work.


We are in a situation that demands a massive cultural shift. Things are falling to bits and have been for quite some time. The current economic collapse only makes it more obvious. Our choice is whether we rise to this challenge or allow things to continue down the path they are on where we let corporations break up the bedrock and contaminate our ground water in the hope that they will keep us in the manner to which we have become accustomed. This is not sane behaviour.

That would mean decisions will not be made by anyone. It is entirely impossible to get full consensus on natural resource exploration.

That may be true. However, we must do better than we are.
Regarding hydraulic fracturing, other types of gas extraction or any industrial development decisions are made by a few powerful individuals with little reference to the needs or desires of anyone else. Few have access to enough information to reach informed opinions on the issues. Fewer still have input into the process by which these decisions are made. To illustrate this re fracking check this link https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...type=1&theater
People should also consider that one Tony O'Reilly, Chief Exec, with 20% stake, of Providence Resources, owner of the Barryroe field off Cork with prospecting rights near the Corrib well also controls the Irish Independent. Join the dots. He controls the flow of information and the flow of gas/oil. Does this seem like a healthy situation for the rest of us? Do you trust anyone with that much power? I do not.

So aiming to please everyone will please no-one. You need to judge who you're willing to upset.
It seems likely that in the not too distant future we will all find reason to be upset

I think it's pretty unrealistic to expect Ireland to put environmentalism above everything.
It would also be a misperception. Rather than being above everything, the environment contains, surrounds and underlies everything we do. In economic terms the Earth is our base on which everything we create stands and from which all the resources we use to create them come and to which all our waste products return. A failure to grasp this means that our economic activities attack and undermine our economic base, in the case of fracking, quite literally.
By valuing only what we can extract from the system we are destroying the system. What would our world look like if instead of issuing currency based on gold, oil or debt (all extractions from the system) we issued currency based on trees planted or the quality of the water or the diversity of species in our bioregions?

And on to the fish.
Whether we ate fish or not we would still have done better by keeping the rights to the fishing and trading the produce over an extended period than selling it for a once off payment (even if that once off did go on for 30 years or more). Fish is a real tradable resource. Money is worthless with nothing to back it. Ireland sold its capital. How is that good business? Was our situation so bad back then that we had no choice or were we conned, intimidated or bribed into doing it?

On to Food Security, or Food Sovereignty which I prefer.
It's true we are a food producing nation. There are some stories behind your figures.
What is really significant is this:
All of this is achieved with only 5% of the workforce (or about 2.5% of the people in the country) doing the production, for just over 4 million people.

You say that like it is a good thing.
It means that 95% of the workforce have no or little connection with their food supply which is also our physical connection to Nature. This disconnection from nature is why it seems rational to some people to fracture the bedrock, releasing god knows what into the ground water as well as carrying out a host of other activities that do us no real good.
The extensive agriculture that we now practice means that we have to depend on mechanisation, chemical fertilisers, pesticides, herbicides it also makes the use of GMOs inevitable. It means that we have to remove hedgerows to allow for bigger machines which leads to erosion of topsoil and loss of fertility and the need for more chemicals. It means wholesale abuse of animals. It is another cause of water pollution and it means that the quality of the food we eat is getting crapper and crapper and crapper.
In order to build healthy bodies to contain healthy minds that can think and feel properly and make sensible, compassionate decisions that lead away from all this madness it is essential that we get the best food we can to eat and the best water we can to drink. For this to happen many many more people need to be involved with growing their food which means more eyes, ears, noses, skin and nervous systems actively engaged in a beneficial way with the ecosystem which gives us the opportunity to physically experience the damage we have done and the opportunity to physically begin to remedy it. The recent interest in home growing is a step in the right direction but it is a very very small step.

At this point in the discussion someone usually criticises the argument as a return to a peasanthood. This is not the case.
I am suggesting that we grow the f**k up as a species, use the skills and technology we have developed, wisely and compassionately and become conscious participants in planetary evolution instead of behaving like psychotic teenagers wrecking the family home.

For this to happen we need to stand up to the bullies amongst us which means learning to see through their lies first.
To suggest that fracking is safe or desirable is a grotesque lie perpetrated by people so far removed from normal human responses that it is hard to grasp the extent of the damage they are doing.
To reject this lie is the only sane response but to do this will demand letting go of comfort, security and most of what we take for granted in our comfortable, convenient existence.
Who's up for it?
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  #46  
Old 30-08-2012, 11:44 PM
polar bear polar bear is offline
 
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Is fracking necessary to recover the fossil fuels?
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  #47  
Old 11-09-2012, 07:50 PM
Earth Repair Earth Repair is offline
 
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Don't really understand yr question Polar Bear. Could you elaborate please?
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  #48  
Old 11-09-2012, 08:27 PM
polar bear polar bear is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Earth Repair View Post
Don't really understand yr question Polar Bear. Could you elaborate please?
Do they have to frack to do what it ever it is they want to do?
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  #49  
Old 12-09-2012, 02:52 AM
WildMountainThyme WildMountainThyme is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earth Repair View Post
Hi there, this response has been brewing for some time. Here goes.
I'm gonna respond to a few points in a way that will hopefully point in the direction of sanity (even if we all live so far from it that we can't remember what it looks or feels like.)

A happy medium perhaps between emigration and still the ability to live and work here is a very good idea.
Offshore oil and gas platforms tick every box on that one.


Stacky, you seem to have come around to one of the original positions of Shell to Sea which was to move the refining of the gas out to sea. Hence the name. For the current aims follow this link; http://www.shelltosea.com/content/campaign-aims


For the bit in italics, I would agree, it would require a governmental, cultural, and psychological change for it to work.


We are in a situation that demands a massive cultural shift. Things are falling to bits and have been for quite some time. The current economic collapse only makes it more obvious. Our choice is whether we rise to this challenge or allow things to continue down the path they are on where we let corporations break up the bedrock and contaminate our ground water in the hope that they will keep us in the manner to which we have become accustomed. This is not sane behaviour.

That would mean decisions will not be made by anyone. It is entirely impossible to get full consensus on natural resource exploration.

That may be true. However, we must do better than we are.
Regarding hydraulic fracturing, other types of gas extraction or any industrial development decisions are made by a few powerful individuals with little reference to the needs or desires of anyone else. Few have access to enough information to reach informed opinions on the issues. Fewer still have input into the process by which these decisions are made. To illustrate this re fracking check this link https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...type=1&theater
People should also consider that one Tony O'Reilly, Chief Exec, with 20% stake, of Providence Resources, owner of the Barryroe field off Cork with prospecting rights near the Corrib well also controls the Irish Independent. Join the dots. He controls the flow of information and the flow of gas/oil. Does this seem like a healthy situation for the rest of us? Do you trust anyone with that much power? I do not.

So aiming to please everyone will please no-one. You need to judge who you're willing to upset.
It seems likely that in the not too distant future we will all find reason to be upset

I think it's pretty unrealistic to expect Ireland to put environmentalism above everything.
It would also be a misperception. Rather than being above everything, the environment contains, surrounds and underlies everything we do. In economic terms the Earth is our base on which everything we create stands and from which all the resources we use to create them come and to which all our waste products return. A failure to grasp this means that our economic activities attack and undermine our economic base, in the case of fracking, quite literally.
By valuing only what we can extract from the system we are destroying the system. What would our world look like if instead of issuing currency based on gold, oil or debt (all extractions from the system) we issued currency based on trees planted or the quality of the water or the diversity of species in our bioregions?

And on to the fish.
Whether we ate fish or not we would still have done better by keeping the rights to the fishing and trading the produce over an extended period than selling it for a once off payment (even if that once off did go on for 30 years or more). Fish is a real tradable resource. Money is worthless with nothing to back it. Ireland sold its capital. How is that good business? Was our situation so bad back then that we had no choice or were we conned, intimidated or bribed into doing it?

On to Food Security, or Food Sovereignty which I prefer.
It's true we are a food producing nation. There are some stories behind your figures.
What is really significant is this:
All of this is achieved with only 5% of the workforce (or about 2.5% of the people in the country) doing the production, for just over 4 million people.

You say that like it is a good thing.
It means that 95% of the workforce have no or little connection with their food supply which is also our physical connection to Nature. This disconnection from nature is why it seems rational to some people to fracture the bedrock, releasing god knows what into the ground water as well as carrying out a host of other activities that do us no real good.
The extensive agriculture that we now practice means that we have to depend on mechanisation, chemical fertilisers, pesticides, herbicides it also makes the use of GMOs inevitable. It means that we have to remove hedgerows to allow for bigger machines which leads to erosion of topsoil and loss of fertility and the need for more chemicals. It means wholesale abuse of animals. It is another cause of water pollution and it means that the quality of the food we eat is getting crapper and crapper and crapper.
In order to build healthy bodies to contain healthy minds that can think and feel properly and make sensible, compassionate decisions that lead away from all this madness it is essential that we get the best food we can to eat and the best water we can to drink. For this to happen many many more people need to be involved with growing their food which means more eyes, ears, noses, skin and nervous systems actively engaged in a beneficial way with the ecosystem which gives us the opportunity to physically experience the damage we have done and the opportunity to physically begin to remedy it. The recent interest in home growing is a step in the right direction but it is a very very small step.

At this point in the discussion someone usually criticises the argument as a return to a peasanthood. This is not the case.
I am suggesting that we grow the f**k up as a species, use the skills and technology we have developed, wisely and compassionately and become conscious participants in planetary evolution instead of behaving like psychotic teenagers wrecking the family home.

For this to happen we need to stand up to the bullies amongst us which means learning to see through their lies first.
To suggest that fracking is safe or desirable is a grotesque lie perpetrated by people so far removed from normal human responses that it is hard to grasp the extent of the damage they are doing.
To reject this lie is the only sane response but to do this will demand letting go of comfort, security and most of what we take for granted in our comfortable, convenient existence.
Who's up for it?
I have itchy feet. Could you elaborate on what kind of issues one would expect and the chances of success?
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Old 12-10-2013, 11:37 PM
INFERNO INFERNO is offline
 
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BREAKING NEWS
France's highest legal body approves fracking ban

http://www.france24.com/en/breaking/...ing-parliament
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