A report by Poyry Management Consulting last week showing a shale gas boom in the UK would create more than 100,000 jobs is further proof the naysayers and anti-fracking lobbyists have got it wrong again.
Much of Lancashire and the North-West suffers from unemployment levels far outstripping the national average of 7.9% while long-term and youth unemployment figures are not too flattering either.
The South is experiencing accelerated economic growth whereas we are being left further behind. Without shale gas, I fear the North-South divide will continue to get bigger and bigger.
With large deposits of shale on our doorstep just waiting to be extracted, surely the time is now for investing in this new source of energy so we can create in the North the sort of energy and jobs boom being enjoyed in the USA thanks to fracking.
UKIP North West MEP