LLM students publish podcast investigating the anti-fracked gas movement

Jun 12 2020 Posted: 12:12 IST

This week, LLM students Colin Carney, Sophie Fitzpatrick and Cassie Roddy-Mullineaux published an episode of the Irish Centre for Human Rights’ Human Rights Podcast investigating the anti-fracked gas movement in Ireland and on the international stage. 

The episode, entitled ‘But Ireland Banned Fracking? Why we still Need to Talk about Fracked Gas’, is available on Soundcloud, Stitcher, Apple Podcast and through the ICHR website, here

In 2017, Ireland became the third European country to ban onshore fracking. Pervasive public concern about the environmental and health risks were the catalyst for the ban along with a relentless campaigning by grassroots movements throughout Ireland. Despite this crucial turning point, the anti-fracking movement is by no means at rest with the planned siting and construction of LNG terminals throughout Ireland.

This podcast episode features interviews with key campaigners, one of whom is Johnny McElligott of Safety Before LNG. Safety Before LNG is an organisation based in North Kerry which is advocating to ban the importation of fracked gas into Ireland and to prevent the construction of a planned LNG (Liquified Natural Gas) terminal on the Shannon Estuary. In the podcast, Johnny speaks about his experience and work to date with Safety Before LNG and explains that his motivation is to protect the environment and sensitive ecosystems in the Shannon Estuary. He also highlights the damaging effects that fracking has for the health of communities in surrounding areas. 

Other guests on the podcast episode include Brian Cuthbert and Jessie Dolliver, activists from Not Here Not Anywhere, a nationwide, grassroots group campaigning to end fossil fuel exploration and the development of new fossil fuel infrastructure in Ireland (including a further planned LNG terminal in Cork Harbour). They provide insight into the science behind LNG and Ireland’s prospects for a just transition. They also explain the European-wide anti-fracked gas movement. 

Sophie, Cassie and Colin also speak to Tammy Murphy, Medical Advocacy Director for Physicians for Social Responsibility Pennsylvania. Tammy informs listeners about the harms that fracking inflicts on local communities in the US and explains why the issue is both transnational and urgent. 

This podcast episode accompanies the LLM students’ work, with Johnny McElligott and Safety Before LNG as part of the Human Rights Law Clinic, to draft and explain the EU and international law justifications for a legislative ban on importing fracked gas into Ireland.