Letters to the Editor

Monday, 18 June 2012

Bill allowing rural communities vote on shale gas died on floor of Legislature

Conservation Council expects government to table new bill next session 
FREDERICTON - Bill 62, an amendment to the Municipalities Act which would give unincorporated rural areas the same authority to vote on shale gas exploration as municipalities, passed second reading in the Legislative Assembly with the support of government.

The bill did not, however, go through and pass the final reading before the end of the day on June 13 which marked the end of the summer session of the Legislature. All bills not passed by the end of the session die.

Stephanie Merrill, spokesperson for shale gas at CCNB Action is encouraged by the fact that the government voted in favour of the bill.

“We are happy to see that the government is supportive of legislating equal opportunities to rural communities and municipalities in deciding on shale gas exploration” said Merrill.

Merrill said that the current governance structure in New Brunswick means unincorporated communities have no legal mechanisms that give them the authority to decide if shale gas development, and other mining and development projects, is something they feel fits with the vision of their community. 

“Since the bill passed second reading, we fully expect the government to bring its own version of the bill back to the Legislature during the Fall sitting”, said Merrill.

CCNB Action has been advocating that all communities be given this authority to define the type, pace, scale and place of shale gas exploration and development.


  1. Stephanie Merrill sees the good in this. All I see is a token gesture designed to make people think the government is on "our" side. What a crock. Let them listen to the people if they are on our side. All shalegas meetings to date have shown public response is overwhelmingly NEGATIVE to even the prospect of it. When will politicians WAKE UP and start doing something SUSTAINABLE? These guys are as bad as Stephen Harper's Third Reich.

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