Skip to content

Fracking wastewater leaking in Nova Scotia, calls grow for a ban on fracking

CBC reports, “Provincial environment officials are looking into a leak of fracking waste water at holding ponds in Kennetcook, Nova Scotia. The water has been there for years in two large holding ponds. Nova Scotia’s Environment Department ordered them covered this year. The problem is, the heavy snow and rain in recent weeks has weighed those covers down so much that the wastewater underneath has been spilling out.”

“There are an estimated 27 million litres of fracking waste water in Nova Scotia. Some of it contains so-called Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORMs). Fracking waste water is stored at the Atlantic Industrial Services facility in Debert, as well as in holding ponds in Kennetcook and Noel.”

A Halifax Media Co-op report has noted AIS has 4.5 million litres of wastewater from Triangle Petroleum’s fracking operations in the Kennetcook area and about 11 million litres of fracked wastewater from Corridor Resources Inc’s operations in the Penobsquis area.

In April 2013, Atlantic organizer Angela Giles wrote about the NOFRAC report ‘Out of Control: Nova Scotia’s experience with fracking for shale gas’. She notes through research and documents received through a Freedom of Information request to the NS Government, the report uncovered a series of problems, including: wastewater ponds built and filled without appropriate permits and a leaking wastewater pond but no soil testing done.”

The Halifax Chronicle-Herald has reported that a poll “commissioned by the Nova Scotia Fracking Resource and Action Coalition, the Council of Canadians and Sierra Club Atlantic, found that 69 per cent of Nova Scotians strongly support or support a continued moratorium on fracking, unless an independent review finds there is no risk to drinking water, human health, the climate or communities. …(The poll) found solid support for a continued ban in all areas of the province — from a high of 72 per cent in Cape Breton to 70 per cent in Halifax Regional Municipality and Annapolis Valley/South Shore, with 61 per cent in the northern part of the province.”

In November 2013, the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities passed a resolution supporting a province-wide moratorium on hydraulic fracturing. The resolution from the coalition of 54 municipalities calls for dialogue between First Nations, federal, provincial and municipal governments on the impacts of fracking.

There is currently a moratorium on fracking in Nova Scotia while an independent review takes place. The Globe and Mail notes the review is being led by Cape Breton University president David Wheeler and its findings are expected to be released in the spring. 

Further reading
Giles calls for ban on treating fracking waste water in Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia to ban import of fracking wastewater