Dickson warns of disastrous consequences for environment if drilling started

Alliance East Antrim MLA Stewart Dickson has said urgent clarification is needed after the company behind a controversial exploratory drill in his constituency claimed it had started drilling there.

Infrastrata stated on its website that it has started operations today (Monday) at the site in Woodburn Forest outside Carrickfergus, however, those monitoring the site say there is no evidence that work is under way.

Mr Dickson said confirmation was needed around the situation at the site.

“It is certainly extremely worrying that Infrastrata has claimed work has begun in Woodburn, particularly when the need for any such action is still highly questionable.

“Alliance has long supported all lawful efforts to stop the drilling and restore confidence in our water system. Earlier this year, I signed an Assembly Petition seeking a review of the extension granted to the drilling and we have continued to repeatedly question the former Department of Environment over its granting permission for the drilling by default.

“Local residents, and those further afield who could be affected by this work, have a legitimate concern about potential pollution of the local water supply. For work to have possibly started could make it a sad day for East Antrim – drinking water may be poisoned, while part of a scenic forest could be destroyed. We might yet see some disastrous consequences for our environment.”

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