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NEWS: Barlow tells Alward government to end its ‘love affair’ with fracking in New Brunswick

CBC reports, “Maude Barlow, chairwoman of the Council of Canadians, cautioned against what she described as the New Brunswick government’s ‘love affair’ with fracking. Barlow said fracking is a threat to Canada’s water supply. ‘We don’t have national drinking water standards, we haven’t properly mapped our ground water, we don’t know if we’re dealing with it properly or not,’ she said in an interview. ‘We’re allowing huge damage to it in our farming practices, in our mining practices, in our energy-producing practices. Now fracking has come along and is destroying more of our water.'”

Barlow is in Fredericton to speak at an event at the UNB this evening, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=13617.

The Alward government
“(Progressive Conservative) Premier David Alward has said repeatedly that companies are just testing to see if there are sufficient shale gas reserves to warrant moving forward with extraction. Alward used his annual State of the Province speech last month to outline his views that the shale gas industry could turn into an economic benefit for a province that is facing a massive debt and high unemployment. Alward has also promised, if a shale gas industry were to be set up in New Brunswick, that he would enforce the continent’s toughest regulations.”

“The Progressive Conservative government is preparing to introduce an environmental protection plan later this spring.”

Last December, the Alward government rejected a moratorium on fracking in the province, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=12636.

Doaktown says no!
In the meantime, “Doaktown council has moved to ban shale gas exploration or extraction near the central New Brunswick village’s water sources. The village’s unanimously decision to prohibit shale gas exploration or extraction near its water sources comes as SWN Resources has informed mayors in Kent County that the company is preparing to start seismic testing in the area.”

Doaktown is a village of just under a thousand people and is situated on the Southwest Miramichi River in central New Brunswick.

“Doaktown asked the provincial government to complete a hydro-geological survey of its aquifers. ‘Following determination of the parameters of the aquifers: the village asks the province to ban any and all exploration for natural gas, or extraction within or near those well field areas,’ according to a resolution adopted at a Feb. 9 council meeting. The council is also asking for the provincial government to provide benchmark tests of the village’s water that could be used to determine any future damage to its water supply.”

“Companies must have permission from local councils to conduct testing within their boundaries.”

In November 2010, Moncton city council said no to fracking in the Turtle Creek watershed, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=4641.

To see the Council of Canadians campaign web-page on fracking, please see http://canadians.org/fracking.