Public opposition to fracking has hardened and ministers have confirmed that they will not give in to industry demands for looser rules on the size of tremors caused by the process.

It adds: “Some 35% of the public now oppose fracking for shale gas, with fears over earthquakes increasingly cited as a reason. Support for the process has fallen to 13%.”

Cuadrilla and Ineos, two of the UK’s biggest shale gas explorers, have this week publicly urged the government to relax rules on tremors caused by fracking, claiming that it will not be commercially viable to extract shale reserves without such a change.

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