Fianna Fáil & Sinn Féin Slam Govt Over Amendments To Anti-Fracking Bill

Both Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin have criticised the government's amendments to a proposed anti-fracking bill.

Fianna Fáil Communications, Environment and Natural Resources Spokesperson, Timmy Dooley TD has said that he, and his party, support the proposed legislation to ban fracking, and would not accept the Government's amendment.

Separately, Sinn Féin TD for Sligo, Leitrim, West Cavan and South Donegal, Martin Kenny, also said that his party supported the ban and went on to described the government's amendment as "sinister and deceitful".

In a statement, Deputy Dooley, said: "Fianna Fáil has consistently opposed any attempt to introduce fracking into Ireland. At both local authority, and Oireachtas level, we have made it abundantly clear that we felt it had no place in Ireland.

"We will oppose any attempt to delay, defer or dilute the legislation as currently drafted.

"I am disappointed by Minister Naughten's attempts, on behalf of Fine Gael, to filibuster on this bill. As a rural deputy, he should know the depth of feeling among rural communities on this, and he should be doing everything he possibly can to end it once and for all.

"Fracking is not necessary in Ireland, and would, if allowed, cause considerable environmental damage to rural communities up and down the country.

"The Government's attempts to defer and delay this important piece of legislation smacks of old politics. Their amendment is classic, old school politics, and people will see it for what it is.

"We cannot risk our environment for the sake of short term benefit. Future generations of Irish people would not thank us."

Sinn Féin's Deputy Kenny added: "When I saw that Tony McLoughlin's bill was being introduced in private members' time and not as government legislation, I feared that the government was not committed to a ban on fracking.

"As his bill came out in the Dáil lottery before our own Sinn Féin legislation to ban fracking, we were prepared to support it in line with our commitment to prohibit it on the island of Ireland, North and South.

"The government amendment to this bill is a sinister and deceitful development which does not ban fracking and introduces reports, consultations and other delaying tactics before a second reading, not until the middle of next year.

"We don't need any more reports or consultation on fracking when the most reputable bodies and scientists have proven its devastating effects on the environment. This is something that we do not want here and as soon as possible Sinn Féin will introduce legislation to ban it."


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