Huddersfield Friends of the Earth today (Saturday 29th October) were joined by Count Frackula, Frackenstein and a coven of witches to call on Barclays bank to stop funding fracking in the UK. The local residents and campaigners were protesting outside the Huddersfield branch of Barclays bank on Market Place, as part of a national week of action calling for Barclays to end their investments in fracking company Third Energy and other fossil fuels.
The Hallowe’en-themed action was designed to raise awareness of Barclays’ fracking plans in North Yorkshire. Count Frackula delivered a letter to the Manager of Barclays branch, while a coven of witches stirred the ‘Fracked Water Cauldron’ to highlight the threat of water contamination from fracking. Passers by were offered ‘Trick or Treats’ with a fracking twist.
“Barclays’ fracking plans in Yorkshire are scary: both to the local communities under immediate threat and to all of us through climate change. People don’t want to see fracking. Not in Kirklees. Not in North Yorkshire. Not anywhere”.
Up and down the country hundreds of people are taking to the streets collecting petition signatures, closing accounts, sending letters, and running spooky Hallowe’en-themed events to ask Barclays to stop funding fracking.
Barclays own Third Energy, the company holding the licence to frack in Ryedale, North Yorkshire, which was given the go-ahead by North Yorkshire County Council in May 2016. Barclays are the only major High Street bank investing in fracking in the UK.
The Huddersfield Friends of the Earth group spoke to hundreds of concerned residents and passers-by through the course of the day who were invited to sign petitions calling for the government to ban fracking.
The protest forms part of a national week of action to stop Barclays fracking organised by Friends of the Earth, 350.org, SumOfUs, People and Planet and Frack Free Ryedale.
Chayley Collis added: “Fracking is not compatible with tackling climate change. Barclays’ fracking investment is risky for both people and the planet”.
“We want Barclays to withdraw their plans to frack in Ryedale, North Yorkshire. Instead of a dash for gas, we need to get behind renewables and energy saving.”
Support for fracking across the UK continues to fall. A recent study showed that only 34% of British public supported fracking with 73% supporting onshore windfarms and 83% supporting solar.
Notes to editors:
1. To find out more about fracking and Friends of the Earth’s campaign visit: www.foe.co.uk/fracking
2. Stop Barclays fracking national week of action events: https://www.foe.co.uk/page/stop-barclays-fracking-week-action
3. Banking while Borneo burns: How the UK financial sector is bankrolling Indonesia’s fossil fuel boom, from Global Justice Now:http://www.globaljustice.org.uk/sites/default/files/files/resources/banking_while_borneo_burns_0.pdf
4. ComRes poll, conducted for climate change charity 10:10, showing levels of public support for fracking and wind power:https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/oct/20/onshore-windfarms-more-popular-than-thought-uk-poll-finds
5. About Friends of the Earth: For more than 40 years we’ve seen that the wellbeing of people and planet go hand in hand – and it’s been the inspiration for our campaigns. Together with thousands of people like you we’ve secured safer food and water, defended wildlife and natural habitats, championed the move to clean energy and acted to keep our climate stable. Be a Friend of the Earth – see things differently. For further information visit www.foe.co.uk, follow us at @wwwfoecouk, or like our Facebook page.