Monthly Archives: January 2014

An uphill PR struggle for fracking

Wind turbine

More needs to be done to develop renewable technologies such as wind energy.

Latest blog from Shaun.

News that the Government is stepping up its campaign to promote fracking through financial incentives to local authorities and communities has reignited the debate about this controversial energy source. However, in my opinion, supporters of fracking will have an uphill struggle to persuade the public.

From a PR point of view, it all starts with the name. Has there ever been a more apocalyptic sounding source of energy?! Even if it was the most benign process ever, it would still ring alarm bells to me. The thought of doing “fracking” or “hydraulic fracturing” to anything makes me think that some serious damage must be being done somewhere.

The second thing is that it is likely to take place mainly in the countryside, often on the edge of villages or towns. Recent research shows that the overwhelming majority of people don’t want fracking on their doorstep, and we’ve already seen significant demonstrations where fracking is proposed, which are only likely to get worse.

In addition, evidence demonstrates that fracking causes earth tremors and may also lead to water contamination and pollution. Until we know more, I think most people would be pretty alarmed to think that fracking could lead to problems like these where they and their families live. In fact, as fracking has been banned in France, surely the process itself should be a cause for concern in this country too?

These days, most people accept that human-made climate change is taking place, so it is puzzling why the Government is looking to subsidise new and controversial fossil fuels which contribute to carbon emissions. It’s a shame that, despite all the warning signs, they are still thinking more about short term profit than protecting the environment for future generations. There is no guarantee that fracking will bring down energy bills and, given the set up of the energy market, I should think lower bills are highly unlikely. Besides, is cheaper energy from fossil sources something we should be aiming for?

Of course the obvious question after all this is, if not fracking then what? A head-in-the-sand energy policy in this country for many years has left us desperate for new energy sources. However, I still think much more needs to be done to develop renewable, carbon-neutral technologies, rather than new fossil fuels, and I for one would much prefer a wind turbine at the bottom of my street than a fracking rig!

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site-logoThe latest news story on our sister website,, is about a new campaign to help get more people online.

We regularly update the news on the site, which is designed specifically for charities. The website outlines the PR and marketing support we can offer charities, and provides communications tips and information which we hope not-for-profit organisations may find useful.

Ethos public relations has worked with a number of charities for over 15 years, helping to promote their services and secure media coverage.

As well as helping charities make the news, we are equally passionate about helping charities get their messages out to the public. If you would like your charity news to be published on the website, please email us your story so that we can consider it. A great photograph also helps!

Latest issue of Credit Union News

Credit Union News - December 2013

Credit Union News – December 2013

The latest issue of Credit Union News, which Ethos public relations has been working on for our client ABCUL, has now been published.

The magazine, which goes out to ABCUL members and many others with an interest in the sector, is published three times a year. In this issue, there is an interview with Sue Lewis, Chair of the Financial Services Consumer Panel, who explains what the panel does and her views on credit unions and the financial services market.

There is a look back at all the celebrations which took place on International Credit Union Day on 17 October, when over 40 bishops got involved with their local credit union. There is also a feature on the links between credit unions and trade unions and the important role that trade unions have played in helping to set up and run credit unions.

A copy of the latest issue can be downloaded from our publications page.