Saturday, November 19, 2011

Hundreds protest hydro-fracking in Fredericton

Police estimate more than 600 people gathered for a hydro-fracking rally in Fredericton, New Brunswick Saturday.
An alliance made up of 28 community groups organized the event to show the Alward government it doesn't want shale gas development in the province.
The group planned to march past the local farmers market before stopping at the legislature.
They say the development of shale gas in New Brunswick is unacceptable and they want the government to put an end to it.
Hydro-fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, is a controversial practice that injects a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into the ground, creating cracks in shale rock formations so that natural gas can be released from areas that would otherwise go untapped.
Earlier this week, federal Environment Minister Peter Kent said while he has the power to stop hydro-fracking in N.B., he's waiting on a review from the Council of Canadian Academies on hydro-fracking.
He said it's too early to speculate what the review, started in September, will find.
Earlier this month, SWN Resources, the biggest player in shale gas exploration in New Brunswick, announced that its initial assessments show a widespread presence of hydrocarbons underground, including oil and natural gas.
The government says it will allow responsible development of the industry.
Protesters say they hope Saturday's demonstration will change the province's mind.

1 comment:

  1. "2 extremely important reports have just been released that confirm the environmental risk of shale gas development.... Minister Kent... must put public health interests over corporate interests.

    The U.S. Secretary of Energy office has just announced that "current regulations are potentially insufficient to protect health and the environment." There second and final 90-day draft report was issued by a federal panel on shale gas drilling:

    REPORT - SHALE GAS PRODUCTION SUBCOMMITTEE 2nd 90-DAY REPORT (Secretary of Energy, Nov. 18, 2011)

    This report was released two days after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said it found high levels of benzene and other chemicals in groundwater samples from the community of Pavillion within Encana's gas field.

    by Abrahm Lustgarten, ProPublica, Nov. 10, 2011

    "The wells also contained benzene at 50 times the level that is considered safe for people, as well as phenols—another dangerous human carcinogen—acetone, toluene, naphthalene and traces of diesel fuel…. The EPA said the water samples were saturated with methane gas that matched the deep layers of natural gas being drilled for energy."