Letters to the Editor

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

An afternoon with Michel DesNeiges, Legal Counsel, NB Environmental Law Society

(photo credit: elements.nb.ca website)
Saturday, January 28, 2012 at 2 pm
Bass River Hall, 20 Fearon Cross Road, Bass River NB
Free Admission. Everyone Welcome!
Stormdate: Saturday, February 04, 2012 at 2 pm.
Freewill donation will be requested to cover the costs of sponsoring this presentation.
Protecting Ourselves from the Deep Shale Gas Mining Industry
Residents of Kent County are very concerned about what shale gas exploration and mining will do to our fresh water wells and aquifers as well as human health, health of livestock and wildlife, and local land and air quality.  Upriver Environment Watch! has recently formed, to inform ourselves and our neighbours about this issue. We are working together with Kent County's Our Environment/Our Choice to sponsor this public information event.
The Alward government is vigourously promoting the economic development of our provincial deep shale gas resources. To set our minds at rest, our trustees in Fredericton are promising they will soon produce a “world-class” set of standards, so that these industries understand they must not pollute our families, homes and rivers in the beautiful Kent County region.
The creation and enforcement of even the strongest regulations by the Government of New Brunswick will not guarantee that we are protected from the health and environmental hazards associated with this industry. Leaving aside the larger and major environmental concerns, this deep drilling and refracturing technology is scientifically exceptionally unpredictable. It is too new, too unknown, and very unsafe. Further, how does the Alward government propose to fund a top-notch regulatory and enforcement system that opens in high gear, and can operate 24/7/365 as needed? That is an expensive proposition.
In October 2011, Minister Northrup said that natural gas companies have been “made well aware that they may not explore where they are not welcome.” WE DO NOT WELCOME shale gas exploration in our Kent County communities, but we expect to see their equipment back here by Spring. How do we protect our properties, families, farms, drinking water, watersheds, wildlife, and livestock from this environmental threat?
Mr. DesNeiges will cover these and more topics in his talk. He will also answer questions from the audience. His presentation will be in English but he will take questions in French or English.