Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Energy Minister Leonard, DNR Minister Northrup Declare Government Position on Shale Gas Ban Before Fredericton Forum

By Ellen Moore

According to a CBC Saint John report this morning, Energy Minister Craig Leonard said yesterday there would be no ban on fracking in New Brunswick because there is no proof the process damages the water table.

In an interview today with CBC Fredericton's Information Morning, Natural Resources Minister Bruce Northrup reiterated Leonard's statement from yesterday, saying there is no proven cases of shale gas drilling destroying ground water.

These statements come prior to tomorrow's government forum in Fredericton on the shale drilling industry in New Brunswick. Leonard and Northrup, along with Environment Minister Blaney and government officials, are scheduled to consult with community organizations concerned about the process on the province's water and natural habitat.

But statements from Leonard in a Telegraph Journal article by Natalie Stechyson suggest consultation won't be the order of the day, but rather educating these groups on the facts of why the province is moving forward with the industry in the province.

"Well obviously we'll have to do a bit more work on the communication side to explain to New Brunswickers what the industry is all about, and just to basically refute some of the misinformation that is out there."

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