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UPDATE: ‘Protecting Our Communities’ against fracking conference now underway in Truro

The ‘Protecting Our Communities: A Conference on Shale Gas and Fracking‘ conference is now underway in Truro, Nova Scotia. Halifax-based Council of Canadians organizer Angela Giles reports that more than 90+ participants were welcomed this morning by Billy Lewis, a Mi’kmaq elder, with a smudging ceremony.

The Council of Canadians helped to organize this conference that will include keynote addresses by Cornell University professor Tony Ingraffea and Alberta anti-fracking activist Jessica Ernst, as well as a series of workshops and discussions.

We are working in partnership with the Nova Scotia Fracking Resource and Action Coalition – which has member groups including the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, Ecology Action Centre, the Nova Scotia Environment Network, and the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter – on this conference.

In a media release issued Thursday, Giles said, “The timing for this conference just seemed perfect. People are right to be looking for help to make their community more aware about the issue. I’m so happy to be part of this conference, which will empower people to protect their community.”

Last night, more than 100 people listened to Ingraffea and Ernst at a ‘Shale Gas and Fracking: What’s at Risk?‘ public forum at Kings College Alumni Hall in Halifax. That event was sponsored by the Council of Canadians, NOFRAC, Ecology Action Centre, and Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment.

The Council of Canadians opposes fracking because of its high water use, its high carbon emissions, its impacts on human health, the disruption it causes to wildlife, and the danger it poses to groundwater and local drinking water. We are calling for a country-wide stop to fracking operations. We will also be launching a petition campaign shortly to put pressure on the federal government to step into a leadership role and ensure that our water sources, people’s health and the environment are protected from unnecessary and dangerous pollution.