Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment says fracking can be done safely

November 27th, 2012 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment has announced:

Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright released her interim report on this afternoon.

The report, Evaluating the environmental impacts of fracking in New Zealand, concludes that fracking can be done safely if well managed but raises concerns about the rules and safeguards surrounding the practice in New Zealand.

“During the course of this investigation I have come to a similar conclusion to the Royal Society which is that fracking is safe if it is properly regulated and managed.

“However I have significant concerns about how fragmented and complicated the regulatory environment for fracking is and about how these rules are being applied.

“If fracking is not done well it can have significant environmental impacts including polluting water and triggering earthquakes.

“I am also concerned that regulation may be too light-handed, particularly if fracking opens the door to a large-scale and widespread oil and gas boom with a lot of different companies involved.

“These concerns form the basis of the next stage of my investigation into fracking which I hope to conclude before the middle of next year.”

If the Greens ever go on about evidence based policy again, then recall how they demanded this inquiry and despite the findings they are still calling for fracking to remain banned until it is “proven safe”. They did the same with genetic engineering.

I’m pleased to see the Commissioner (who has not been shy to seriously attack the Government when she thinks they have it wrong), come up with sensible conclusions, and her further work should be very useful in providing a regulatory regime for fracking to continue to be used in New Zealand – as it has for over 20 years already.

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23 Responses to “Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment says fracking can be done safely”

  1. loonybonkersmad (27 comments) says:

    and from the report:

    “There have been calls for a moratorium to be placed on fracking in New Zealand, but I do not think this is justified at present.”

    Your response Greens?

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  2. thedavincimode (6,532 comments) says:

    Frack it, suck it, sell it.

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  3. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    Fracking sensible report.

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  4. Luc Hansen (4,573 comments) says:

    And we can look forward to DPF and his government throwing their support behind Wright’s similarly evidence-based recommendation to leave the southern lignite in the ground?

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  5. scrubone (3,048 comments) says:

    But fracking hasn’t been “proven safe”!!!??!?!11!!

    How can she do such a thing, when so many local bodies have rejected it based on mass hysteria and misinformation?

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  6. Peter (1,578 comments) says:

    Gareth will be very annoyed when he gets off the plane.

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  7. RightNow (6,659 comments) says:

    “DPF and his government”

    Congratulations DPF, I hear you’ve got a new job.

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  8. scrubone (3,048 comments) says:

    And we can look forward to DPF and his government throwing their support behind Wright’s similarly evidence-based recommendation to leave the southern lignite in the ground?

    The parlimentary comissioner of the enviroment’s job is to comission the enviroment. One would expect her to lean against things that have enviormental risk, so no.

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  9. RRM (9,458 comments) says:

    SO it can be done safely, but there needs to be more straightforward and tighter regulation than what we currently have.

    It sounds like this report has something for just about everyone!

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  10. wat dabney (3,671 comments) says:

    And we can look forward to DPF and his government throwing their support behind Wright’s similarly evidence-based recommendation to leave the southern lignite in the ground?

    That conclusion was based on the unexamined acceptance of the global warming alarmism and the alleged effects of CO2. If the global warming theory is false then that conclusion must also be false.

    The global warming theory has been comprehensively falsified, therefore the report’s objection no longer stands.

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  11. RF (1,272 comments) says:

    Thank god for common sense. Poor old pee wee “cry me a river” Gareth. He is going to be one pissed off little green elf.

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  12. Manolo (13,370 comments) says:

    However, the communist Luddites continue their campaign against our country.
    http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8571057/fracking-moratorium-still-needed-greens

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  13. Pete George (22,845 comments) says:

    I bet no one saw this coming:

    @GarethMP

    PCE fracking report does not guarantee safety nor regulations that see best practise so Greens renewing safety-first call for a moratorium

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  14. Peter (1,578 comments) says:

    He’s a hysterical, yet predictable, wee chap.

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  15. rangitoto (195 comments) says:

    Have the Greens proved that their party is safe?

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  16. scrubone (3,048 comments) says:

    rangitoto: quite. Actually I’m pretty sure they’ve proven themselves very dangerous indeed.

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  17. PleaseThinkOfTheCatapults (7 comments) says:

    The Interim report, for people who actually want to read it for themselves instead of regurgitated versions or press releases, is located here:

    http://www.pce.parliament.nz/assets/Uploads/Fracking-interim-web.pdf

    From the introduction:

    “The high-level conclusion from the work done to date in this investigation echoes,
    and is broadly consistent with, the reviews of fracking that have been done
    elsewhere in the world. That conclusion is that the environmental risks associated
    with fracking can be managed effectively provided, to quote the United Kingdom
    Royal Society, “operational best practices are implemented and enforced through
    regulation”. But at this stage I cannot be confident that operational best practices
    are actually being implemented and enforced in this country.”

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  18. rouppe (916 comments) says:

    Well this is the key, isn’t it…

    However I have significant concerns about how fragmented and complicated the regulatory environment for fracking is and about how these rules are being applied.

    If fracking is not done well it can have significant environmental impacts including polluting water and triggering earthquakes.

    Lack of regulation and oversight were major elements on the leaky homes and Pike River events

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  19. David Garrett (6,426 comments) says:

    Peter: He’s actually not hysterical….but he is a very young man with very little life experience doing what Russel and Meteria tell him to…

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  20. Paulus (2,502 comments) says:

    Right up the Greenpeace NZ Branch
    But they will never accept it anyway as they are so bigotted, and if contrary to what they say and think, can never be right anyway, so why waste your breath – Greenpeace are always right in everything.
    Bloody frightening as they will have shared power after 2014.
    But Labour had better do what they want, because both parties are power mad at any cost.
    Bugger New Zealand’s future.

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  21. emmess (1,369 comments) says:

    The Greenies wouldn’t even accept report that said crossing the road is safe.

    But but but what about the precautionary principle? How can you prove you will never ever ever get injured or worse?

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  22. kowtow (7,629 comments) says:

    TVNZ1 News,the nation’s supposedly leading broadcaster has just shown the discredited ,tap on fire scene from the movie Gasland in relation to this parliamentary report.

    Unbelievable.

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  23. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    The Commissioner is as fruity as a recently fed parrot.
    And they were fracking without resource consent in Taranaki – fucking confidence inspiring, that, given the bullshit hoops you have to jump through to get a house built.

    http://nowoccupy.blogspot.com/2012/11/parliamentary-commissioner-on-fracking.html

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