Letters to the Editor

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Details on anti-shale gas rally at Legislature Wednesday, November 23rd

FREDERICTON - A rally at the Provincial Legislature will take place on November 23rd
to protest unconventional shale gas development in New Brunswick.

Citizens and community groups from throughout New Brunswick will converge on Fredericton on
Wednesday, November 23rd at the opening session of the New Brunswick Legislature with their
message to the Alward Government that the exploration and extraction of natural gas from shale
using horizontal drilling in combination with slick water hydraulic fracturing will not be tolerated.

Members of CUPE locals from throughout the province will be joining industry opponents in
solidarity on Wednesday. At their November 3rd 2011 National Convention, CUPE adopted
Resolution No.96, which expressly states that all levels of government must put an end to shale gas
development because the industry, “has failed to demonstrate that such development would not have
serious consequences for the environment and the health of citizens”; and governments being
“clearly unprepared for this issue, and have done a poor job of responding to public concerns”.

New Brunswickers from all over the province denounce the development of an unconventional shale
gas industry. The process used to extract unconventional shale gas is less than 20 years old. It is the
undisputed cause of ecological damage and long-term economic net debt, earthquakes, air and noise
pollution, infrastructure degradation and the profligate use and irreversible poisoning of trillions of
litres of fresh water. It leaves deleterious impacts on the lives and health of humans and other
animals in its wake.

“The civic duty of New Brunswick residents does not require that they be guinea pigs in anyone's
science experiments”, states Jim Emberger, spokesperson for the Taymouth Community Association.

The promise of large-scale job creation appears over-exaggerated. In a recent presentation at the
University of New Brunswick on October 22, 2011, Mr. Calvin Tillman, former mayor of Dish,
Texas mentioned that since this industry requires highly skilled workers, most will be imported from
outside the province to enable the industry to be more competitive at a time when stock market
prices for natural gas are low.

Sixty residents in Penobsquis have lost their well water and have experienced ground subsidence
allegedly from potash mining and the added burden of shale gas drilling in their rural community.
Some who want to move away have been unable to sell their homes. We ask, where is justice for
the people of Penobsquis? Will regulations serve anyone when more things go wrong? A point
made clear in the recent documentary by Rob Turgeon, ‘Be… Without Water’.

Events on Wednesday, November 23rd are scheduled to begin with a gathering at the Provincial
Legislature at 12:00 noon. A program with music and speakers will begin at 12:45 pm.