National Farmers’ Union wants assurances farmers will be compensated if fracking reduces the value of their land, and accuses ministers of brushing aside their fears
The NFU said its members feared that the value of their land above fracking sites could be reduced “because of current attitudes and perceptions of fracking”. Photo: Reuters
By Emily Gosden, Energy Editor7:00AM BST 06 Oct 2014 3 Comments
Farmers fear they could face financial ruin from government plans to allow fracking beneath their land without compensation, the National Farmers’ Union has warned.
Ministers pushing for shale gas exploration cannot take the support of rural communities for granted and are turning farmers against the process by appearing to brush side their concerns, it warned.
The Government is pressing ahead with new laws that would strip people of power to block fracking beneath their property or land. It has insisted no compensation will be paid to individual home and landowners, because they should not be affected by the gas or oil extraction deep beneath them.
But the NFU, which represents 47,000 farm businesses across England and Wales, said its members feared that the value of their land above fracking sites could be reduced “because of current attitudes and perceptions of fracking” – even if no harm was actually caused.
This could have serious consequences for farmers, especially those with mortgages secured to their land – for whom “any reduction in the value of the land could have significant financial implications”.