[Image: Friends of the Earth].

[Image: Friends of the Earth].

“We know you don’t want fracking, but we’re not listening. And we know we pledged to stop fracking near drinking water, but we didn’t mean it.” Those are the messages from this Government, according to Friends of the Earth.

The article states: “A few weeks ago we learned – in a leaked letter – that the Government will help fracking companies no matter what. And it appears to be good to its word.

“Last week it ignored increasing public pressure to ban fracking in England. But it did pledge to prohibit fracking near drinking water sources – due to concerns about contamination.

“Roll on just one week and the Government is now fiddling with the law to make this pledge meaningless.

“MPs will now have to vote on whether to accept this u-turn. If they don’t block the changes, then fracking could take place in the areas that provide around one third of our drinking water. This would seriously risk contaminating the drinking water supply.”

This refers to an about-turn in the House of Lords on Monday evening that, it seems, has only been reported on DeSmog UK.

The Labour party tried to force through more stringent measures in the hotly contested Infrastructure Bill currently going through Parliament designed to protect groundwater which could supply homes and businesses.

But the government’s counter-proposal, tabled by Baroness Kramer, the Liberal Democrat transport minister, watered-down the language around safeguarding groundwater supplies from fracking. It now allows the relevant Secretary of State to define what constitutes a ‘protected area’.

This is not what the Labour Party intended when its regulations for fracking were passed by the Commons on January 26 – and it isn’t what Conservative constituents wanted when they demanded their MPs place checks and balances on fracking.

But it is what the Conservative-led government – and by Baroness Kramer’s participation, clearly the Liberal Democrats as well – want. This writer wouldn’t trust a Conservative or Liberal Democrat Secretary of State to define a protected area – would you?

The Coalition is clearly trying to sneak this measure onto the statute books in order to make it law before anybody can protest. They’re slimy like that.

But you have a chance to put a stop to it.

Friends of the Earth have set up a site where you can email your MP and demand they vote the new measure out of the Infrastructure Bill.

A few weeks ago, it looked as though the British people had won a major victory against the corporate cronies and tinpot despots in the Coalition government. Now it seems they could reverse that good work, out of spite.

Don’t let them.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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