Citation Watterson A & Dinan W (2017) The U.K.'s "Dash for Gas" A Rapid Evidence Assessment of Fracking for Shale Gas, Regulation and Public Health, New Solutions, 27 (1), pp. 68-91.
Abstract The evidence on public health regulation of the unconventional gas extraction (fracking) industry was examined using a rapid evidence assessment of fifteen case studies from multiple countries. They included scientific and academic papers, professional reports, government agency reports, industry and industry-funded reports, and a nongovernment organization report. Each case study review was structured to address strengths and weaknesses of the publication in relation to our research questions. Some case studies emphasized inherent industry short-, medium-, and long-term dangers to public health directly and through global climate change impacts. Other case studies argued that fracking could be conducted safelyassumingindustry best practice, “robust” regulation, and mitigation, but the evidence base for such statements proved generally sparse. U.K. regulators’ own assessments on fracking regulation are also evaluated. The existing evidence points to the necessity of a precautionary approach to protect public health from unconventional gas extraction development.
Keywords fracking; public health; precaution; regulation; rapid evidence assessment