The Friends of the UNB Woodlot plan to attend Fredericton City Council tomorrow night (Monday, Sept. 12th at 7:30 pm) and ask to be given the opportunity to make a presentation and outline the reasons why such shale gas development activity is an unacceptable risk of contamination to our drinking water. All supporters are welcome. (Not: enter front door of City Hall from Queen Street, and then walk upstairs to the 3rd floor public gallery.)
The presentation by the Friends of the UNB Woodlot will ask City Council for the following: (1) to ban any shale gas exploration within city limits; (2) to adopt a resolution asking the Union of the Municipalities of New Brunswick (UMNB), and the provincial government, to ban shale gas development from the province; and (3) to adopt a resolution asking the provincial government to implement watershed-based source protection for our drinking water throughout the province.
The concern that the Friends of the UNB Woodlot have with shale gas development highlights the need for more protection of forested wetlands and groundwater sources like the UNB Woodlot. The 3800-acre forested wetlands of the UNB Woodlot is the origin of four major watersheds that extend over the entire southside of Fredericton and part of New Maryland. The reason that these wet forests are here is that the UNB Woodlot area represents very high groundwater levels, often just below the surface. And many of the wetlands will likely have close connections with, and help recharge, this groundwater system. This groundwater contributes to the recharge of both the Fredericton and New Maryland aquifers.