The Long Hello: Energy Governance, Public Participation, and ‘Fracking’

Whitton, John orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-6391-5740 and Parry, Ioan orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-1847-3036 (2019) The Long Hello: Energy Governance, Public Participation, and ‘Fracking’. In: The Palgrave Handbook of Managing Fossil Fuels and Energy Transitions. Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 405-425. ISBN 978-3-030-28075-8

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We discuss the promotion of shale gas as a part of a UK energy mix of renewable, fossil fuel and nuclear technologies. This seems to go against international agreements signed by the UK Government and others to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. We frame our discussion in terms of ‘Energy Governance’ and our own conceptualisation of social sustainability. However, we are also clear that all forms of electricity generation have not been without public controversy in the UK. Unconventional, shale gas or fracking seems to have been the most prominent and has highlighted a systemic and persistent issue; that of a lack of transparency and access to planning and decision-making surrounding energy developments in the UK and the lack of agency afforded to affected communities. We argue that collaborating with local communities, whereby diverse local needs, experiences and expertise, and priorities are explored is more likely to lead to decisions that are socially sustainable.

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