The Cabinet Office has finally released its – still heavily redacted – secret report on the fracking industry, following a 22-month Freedom of Information battle with Unearthed. The document – produced by the Cabinet Office in 2016 but never published – confirms government and industry players were privately downbeat about the prospects for a UK shale boom, even as they talked up the sector’s potential. Unearthed first discovered the existence of the report in early 2018, but its information request was rejected because the government claimed it “could call into question the industry’s viability.” Following a hearing in July this year, the information tribunal ordered the government to release key extracts of the report. The government failed to comply with the order to publish on 25 November, but finally released the report late on Friday afternoon. Though sections of the document have been unredacted, it remains heavily censored. Jon Trickett, shadow minister for the Cabinet Office, told Unearthed: “This report clearly shows that the Tories have bent over backwards to serve the interests of big business, especially the oil and gas industry.
Unearthed 2nd Dec 2019 read more »
Guardian 2nd Dec 2019 read more »