Response 337082703

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Community Considerations

1. What are your views on the potential social, community and health impacts of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

What are your views on the potential social, community and health impacts of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
Overall negative, whatever the short-term benefits. The risks involved are huge and to date largely unknown because too little trustworthy data exists. Experimenting under a densely populated area does not seem like a good move. Scotland has plentiful gas and oil resources elsewhere which can be exploited by means less prone to unforseen consequences. In addition, taking the long-term view, Scotland should look to maximise a non-carbon based economy. The existence of these untapped resources could be seen as an "insurance policy" for the future i.e. should there be an overwhelming need for these resources, then they would still be available.

2. What are your views on the community benefit schemes that could apply, were an unconventional oil and gas industry to be developed in Scotland?

What are your views on the community benefit schemes that could apply, were an unconventional oil and gas industry to be developed in Scotland?
Negative. In view of the large amounts of money the exploration companies would be set to make, such schemes rarely seem to be generous or long-termist enough to offset the risks and usually smack of callous handouts. And I have yet to see a community, in the UK or abroad, which benefited from such schemes to such an extent that it produced vibrant communities. In the end, extraction of raw materials is a fairly short-lived exercise whereas what deprived communities are usually in need of is long-term development of job prospects. This is all to obvious with the waxing and waning of jobs in the oil industry in Scotland, depending on which way the oil price is teetering this month.

Economic Considerations

3. What are your views on the potential impact of unconventional oil and gas industry on Scotland's economy and manufacturing sector?

What are your views on the potential impact of unconventional oil and gas industry on Scotland's economy and manufacturing sector?
There might be short term benefits for the economy. I fail to see how it would significantly contribute to manufacturing. If it goes wrong, it could cost an absolute fortune - imagine the fallout if the entire Falkirk area ends up with a polluted water supply.

4. What are your views on the potential role of unconventional oil and gas in Scotland's energy mix?

What are your views on the potential role of unconventional oil and gas in Scotland's energy mix?
We should not be pursuing this, certainly not at this time. The drive towards renewable is the way forward. In my view, if the Scottish Government is looking to regenerate deprived areas in the Central Belt, we should invest in world class research centres in that area for devising means to store and transport clean energy.

Environmental Considerations

5. What are your views on the potential environmental impacts of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

What are your views on the potential environmental impacts of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
My considered view is that nobody seems to know nothing for sure. The truth probably lies somewhere between the industry claiming it is safe (but who have a vested interest in it being "safe") and the opposing end which claims we will be wading in knee-deep mining effluent for generations. There seems to be a sufficient amount of data out there which makes the claims of total safety (not that such a thing exists) questionable, even before considering global warming. Taking the slow approach to this won't hurt, it's not like the shale is going anywhere.

6. What are your views on the potential climate change impacts of unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

What are your views on the potential climate change impacts of unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
As stated above, it must be our aim to move away from a carbon-based energy supply, so rather than spend time and money on trying to figure out if a controversial and potentially dangerous (to humans and the environment) means of exploitation - which even if successful would guarantee an increased carbon footprint - we should take the long-term view and invest in R&D of renewables. especially now that Westminster seems to be cutting their support in the sector.

7. What are your views on the regulatory framework that would apply to an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

hat are you views on the regulatory framework that would apply to an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
I honestly do not understand this area well enough to have a cogent opinion but my overall experience of environmental disasters makes me wary. For some reason, when things go badly wrong, it appears to be the government and communities who end up picking up the tab whereas the industries involved develop slopy shoulders held up by teams of well-paid lawyers.

Concluding Remarks

8. Overall, and in light of the available evidence, what do you think would be the main benefits, if any, of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

Overall, and in light of the available evidence, what do you think would be the main benefits, if any, of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
Short term, it would plug a few minor holes in the *UK* budget, the return to Scotland would be much smaller.

9. Overall, and in light of the available evidence, what do you think would be the main risks or challenges, if any, of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?

Overall, and in light of the available evidence, what do you think would be the main risks or challenges, if any, of an unconventional oil and gas industry in Scotland?
Too many risks, not the future of energy. Let's not, certainly not now.

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