Cheaper energy bills and tens of thousands of new jobs. Today the Prime Minister said he thought the benefits were too great to ignore as he stressed his support for fracking, even in populated areas of the South.
There are three potential sites in the region. Test drilling has already been been carried out at Cowden near Tunbridge Wells. Tests are underway at at Balcombe in Sussex and planning pernission granted for exploratory work at a site near Sandwich. Around 40 more sites are being looked at.
This week, hundreds of protesters are expected to join an existing protest at Balcombe to set up a climate camp - which will call for fracking to be banned. Andy Dickenson has been there to gauge reaction.
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Manali Lukha presents the latest weather for the western part of the Meridian region.
Manali Lukha presents the latest weather for the eastern part of the Meridian region.
Manali has the latest weather forecast for the east of the Meridian region