Liz Truss did eight separate radio interviews in an hour. (Photo: Stefan Rousseau via PA Wire/PA Images)
Liz Truss was left struggling for answers as she was grilled over her controversial plans to let fracking begin again in the UK.
The prime minister was put on the spot by BBC Radio Lancashire during a blitz of media appearances this morning.
It was the first time the prime minister has spoken publicly since the economic turmoil caused by Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget last Friday.
The government has announced that the moratorium on fracking has been lifted, despite the lack of scientific evidence that it is safe.
That has sparked an angry backlash, including from Conservative MPs in areas where exploration work could now take place.
During her interview with presenter Graham Liver, Truss insisted that no projects would go ahead without local people giving their consent.
Asked what that would look like, Truss said: “Well ... the ... the energy secretary will be laying out in more detail exactly what that looks like, but it does mean making sure there is local support for going ahead.”
Graham Liver interjected: “It sounds like you don’t know.”
Truss said: “Well there are various detailed issues to be worked through, but I can assure [local Tory MP] Mark Menzies I will ensure there is local consent if we are to go ahead in any particular area with fracking.”
Later in the interview, the presenter said: “You talked about how it was a success in other countries, but in America they do it in the middle of nowhere. Do you know actually where Preston New Road is, where they have been fracking?”
After a pause, the PM replied: “Well I ... I don’t think I’ve been to that site in the past.”
Graham Liver then asked: “Shouldn’t you?”
Following another awkward silence, Truss eventually said: “As I’ve said. we will only go ahead with projects where there is local consent. I’m very, very clear about that. We will make sure that local consent is in place.”
— Dino Sofos (@dinosofos) September 29, 2022
In an earlier interview on BBC Radio Leeds, the prime minister doubled down on the government’s economic strategy, despite the fall in the value of the pound and the prospect of higher mortgage rates.
She said: “This is the right plan that we’ve set out.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.