More people support fracking than oppose it, according to a survey commissioned by Greenpeace. The group, which is campaigning against fracking, tried to bury the inconvenient result in a footnote of a press release announcing the results of the survey.
The finding that 42 per cent of people supported fracking while 35 per cent opposed it is particularly awkward for Greenpeace because it shows greater support for the shale gas industry than government surveys have suggested.
Twenty-four per cent of people said they supported shale gas extraction in the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s latest Public Attitudes Tracker survey, published in February. A similar proportion (23 per cent) were opposed and half were undecided.
ComRes, the polling company, asked 2,035 people in the Greenpeace survey last month how much they supported fracking, which it described as a process where “natural gas is extracted . . . by drilling a hole, creating a tiny explosion to fracture the rock and then injecting water, sand and chemicals at high pressure to allow gas to be released”.
It found that men (56 per cent) were almost twice as likely as women (29 per cent) to be in favour of fracking. Support was highest among people aged 65 and over, at 58 per cent, compared with 36 per cent among those aged 18 to 24.