PLANET INEOS: A QUEST TO FRACK FOR PLASTICS THREATENS AIR, WATER, AND CLIMATE

Tuesday 5 June saw Talk Fracking pay a visit to Downing Street, taking the fracking and plastics crisis right to Theresa May’s front door and marking the 2018 United Nations World Environment Day.

Climate activists Dame Vivienne Westwood and her son, Joe Corré, hand-delivered research documents to Number 10 from Food and Water Watch/Food & Water Europe, detailing the corporate profile and extensive environmental failure record of petrochemical giant, INEOS.

Accompanied by global movement group, Break Free from Plastic, the protest highlighted climate pollution from fracking, and the UK government’s hypocritical position over plastics.

They also delivered a giant card containing the message: “Why Does the Government’s Industrial Policy Allow INEOS to Frack4Plastics?” and a bag of plastic ‘nurdles’ – an escalating crisis on beaches worldwide, but close to INEOS’s site in particular. Just 12 miles from INEOS’s polymer plant, North Queensferry beach has been described as a “pollution hotspot”, littered with hundreds of thousands of plastic nurdles as a result of industrialised plastic production.

‘Planet INEOS’ was an artistic representation of the environmental harms caused by plastic pollution and climate change being inflicted by global petrochemical giant, INEOS.

 

INEOS is Britain’s biggest private company and owned by the UK’s richest man, controversial billionaire and fracking profiteer, Jim Ratcliffe. INEOS own more fracking licenses than any other energy company in the UK and already use fracked gas from the United States, imported by their vast dragon ships, as feedstock to manufacture plastics.

Despite the government’s recently announced War on Plastic, the Tories’ industrial policy gives plastic production a higher priority than energy.

Talk Fracking’s Joe Corré said:

“It’s impossible to reconcile the government’s War on Plastic with its policy on fracking when they’re clearly enabling the creation of yet more problem plastic. It’s sheer hypocrisy.

“If INEOS get their way and fulfil their ambition to frack the length and breadth of the UK, they will be making a vast contribution to the already growing pile of cheap plastics in the world today.”

INEOS have a dreadful collective environmental track record spanning Europe and beyond, with documented toxic chemical leaks, fires and explosions that have endangered workers, communities and the environment.

“Now they plan to bring those dangers to hundreds of communities across the UK, just to make more plastics that we don’t want,” Corré added.

Food and Water Watch/Food and Water Watch Europe Executive Director, Wenonah Hauter, said:

“INEOS’s fracking dreams are a nightmare for communities on both sides of the Atlantic, and that’s why so many people are speaking up to stop them. Anyone who cares about the climate crisis, the increasing burden of global plastics pollution, and the air and water pollution associated with petrochemical manufacturing should get active in the fight to stop INEOS from fracking the UK.”