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Romania cannot promote shale gas exploration without public's acceptance, proper information campaign


Romania cannot promote shale gas exploration without having the public's acceptance and without properly informing the public of the advantages and implications resulting from the exploitation of such a resource, as well as about the last generation technology that is used in the process, Iulian Iancu, chairman of the Deputies' Chamber's Commission for Industries and Services, told Agerpres on Thursday.

Iancu said that the shale gas drilling is a topic that sparked off a revolution worldwide in 2012 and that fortunately, these resources might be an important reserve for Romania, if their existence is confirmed. But, their exploration cannot be done without properly informing the public and launching a debate in this respect.

'We cannot promote this type of resource without having the public's acceptance and without preparing and properly informing the citizens about the benefits, implications, last generation technology of this exploitation. As a result, the Romanian Academy launched a debate on this topic, on a whole range of aspects, from all those accidents that today are very easy to understand and can be seen online, to the last generation technology that brought that element of security, safety and turned the United States from an importer of natural gas into an exporter,' said Iancu.

In his opinion, the subject cannot be promoted 'all of a sudden,', but it should be under public debate. In addition, the population, especially the citizens living in the areas where the potential of shale gas has been confirmed, has to be correctly informed.

As for the concerns over the impact the shale gas exploration may have upon the environment, Iulian Iancu said the concerns are fueled by some factors of interest, the oil giants respectively trying to prevent each other from entering the market.

Over 7,000 citizens protested on Wednesday in Barlad (270 km north-east of Bucharest) against exploring and drilling for the shale gas in the county of Vaslui. The protest was staged by the Initiative Group of the Civil Society (GISC) in Barlad. Representatives of Barlad and region-based parish churches, environmental activists, fans of the FC Vaslui football club, as well as citizens of other counties attended the rally.