SNP narrowly votes against all-out fracking ban

A bid was made for the SNP to extend the moratorium to a full ban on fracking. Picture: Getty
A bid was made for the SNP to extend the moratorium to a full ban on fracking. Picture: Getty
Share this article
34
Have your say

A bid to persuade the SNP to support an all-out ban on fracking was narrowly defeated at the party conference.

Anti-fracking delegates challenged the SNP’s policy for a moratorium on the controversial gas extraction technique, arguing that conference should go further and outlaw it.

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing has announced the moratorium to allow the Scottish Government to hold a public consultation and commission a health assessment on the impact of fracking.

Ineos, the operator of the Grangemouth petrochemical plant run by the industrialist Jim Ratcliffe, is attempting to win support for fracking in the Forth Valley.

During a highly charged debate, delegates voiced their opposition to fracking but eventually toed the party line.

With the vote going to a count, 550 delegates supported a moratorium compared with 427 who wanted the party to strengthen its opposition to a full ban.

One delegate who supported a ban told conference: “I am sick to death of Green Party members telling me that the SNP supports fracking. It does not. Jim Ratcliffe, I have a message for you - 1,400 jobs at Grangemouth will not be held hostage to you blowing our country to pieces.”