Former British Prime Minister Liz Truss, who held office for just 49 days, has called for a revival of shale gas production through fracking. During her speech at the Institute of Government, almost a year after the lifting of the moratorium on fracking in England, Truss defended her decision and stressed the need for growth in the energy sector. He noted that fracking should continue, as should the abolition of the property tax.
Truss stressed that energy, housing and the labor market were the biggest barriers to the growth of the British economy. He said the introduction of the energy price guarantee, along with efforts to promote fracking and exploitation of the North Sea, would have led to lower energy bills and greater energy independence for the country.
However, the link between fracking and lower energy prices has been widely dismissed by experts, including former energy minister Kwasi Kwarteng. The Truss administration did not provide specific information about local consent for fracking operations, nor did it offer any additional information on the topic in its speech.
Since Truss’ resignation there have been plans to close shale gas wells in Lancashire and north Nottinghamshire. The Kirby Misperton fracking site, North Yorkshire, is currently being used for a geothermal energy trial.
It is important to note that in her speech Truss did not address important issues such as asylum, Brexit, crime, education, hospitals and the NHS, immigration and unemployment. These topics are regularly monitored in YouGov surveys. Instead, Truss briefly touched on issues such as health, climate change, net zero emissions legislation, Russia, transport and defense.
While Truss’ speech highlighted economic growth and debt, there was little reference to inflation, the family and the environment. Truss criticized what she called “government environmental solutions,” highlighting environmental regulations that contribute to the high cost of living.
Overall, Truss’ advocacy of fracking could face resistance amid concerns about its environmental impact and questionable links to lower energy prices.