Readers’ letters - January 27

Our woodlands are facing immense pressure says a reader. See letter
Our woodlands are facing immense pressure says a reader. See letter

What’s our Plan B?

Am I missing something here? I have read about the plummeting oil prices. Apparently the motivation of the Saudi oil producers is to flood the oil market, forcing down prices to break the US fracking industry’s competitiveness (as well as the Russians and Iranian oil producers for good measure). All commentators seem to think that these low oil prices are here to stay for some time.

Surely the companies queueing up to start drilling their fracking wells in this country will have based their well viability costings on out-of-date, much higher oil and gas prices? So, when they get their planning permissions, which the Government seems willing to override local councils and public opinion to achieve, the fracking companies will find it is not financially viable to even start drilling. Hence this Government, having based its energy strategy on getting cheaper oil products from fracking, will find itself facing a crisis in oil and gas supplies.

There will then be no alternative but to buy on the open world market – as they do now. So we will be no further forward!? Do they have a Plan B?

Ted Naisbitt,

Address supplied

Help us save our woodland

Coverage surrounding the recent floods has recognised the immense potential of trees and woods in flood defence efforts. Our woods provide other vital services too: defences against climate change and pollution, increased physical and mental wellbeing for local people, and refuges for some of our most threatened wildlife.

It is concerning that woodlands across the UK are now facing unprecedented pressures. In 1217, Henry III signed the Charter of the Forest, protecting the rights of common people to use the royal forests. Eight hundred years later, most of the UK’s woodland is gone or threatened, but its services are no less vital.

The Woodland Trust, along with 47 other organisations, will create a new Charter for Trees, Woods and People in 2017. We encourage readers to get involved, particularly to tell their stories of how local trees and woodlands have made a difference to their lives or their community. Visit treecharter.co.uk to learn more.

Oliver Franks,

Volunteer for The Woodland Trust

Making the most of land

There seems to be a fashion in house building to randomly dot houses here and there.

In a field of good arable land near to where I live, the builders appear to be doing this again. Why can they not build terraces again? In a given field size, many, many more homes can be fitted in.

The size can be as large as needed. If so many homes have to be built, according to Government, why not make the most use of available land? As the Old Timers say: “They’re not making any more land.”

Jeremy C Green via email

Save cash

If David Cameron is serious about immigrants learning English, maybe he should stop Government departments and local authorities printing leaflets, information booklets and application forms in various languages and also the provision of interpreters. This may save enough money to provide more English classes.

Michael Dobson,

Address supplied