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WIN! Inverness County council supports Nova Scotia-wide fracking ban

Photo credit: Lake Ainslie Historical Society

The Cape Breton Post reports that, “Inverness County council is supporting a province-wide ban on the industrial use of…hydraulic fracturing to extract oil and gas from underground rock formations.””The resolution was made at the request of the Inverness County Chapter of the Council of Canadians, which presented its concerns over a proposed oil and gas exploration in the Lake Ainslie area during a regular meeting on Monday (February 14), which was attended by about 45 concerned citizens. According to the group, any drilling in areas as sensitive as the Lake Ainslie, Margaree and Mull River watersheds will set a dangerous precedent.” Lake Ainslie is the largest freshwater lake in Nova Scotia.

“’The potential short-term employment relating to this project does not (equal) what we stand to lose in the long run,’ said chapter member Coralie Cameron. ‘This industry is only economically viable for the company when large areas of land are used and exploited.’ Cameron said a proposed drill could affect long-established industries such as fishing, tourism and farming.””Fracking opponent (and Inverness County chapter activist) Frances Oommen said she was delighted with council’s decision and the number of people who showed up to voice their concerns. ‘We’re happy that they have stood on their principles, they believed that this is not the right way to go,’ said Oommen. ‘I think it’s fine that they invite Petroworth to come … we will be here to listen to what they say.’ Oommen said others need to be educated about the possibility of projects elsewhere in the province. She noted that earlier this year the province’s Department of Energy requested exploration proposals inviting companies to bid to explore for coal gas methane in the Tompkinsville agreement block in the Sydney area.”

“PetroWorth Resources has already applied to the province to drill an exploratory 1,200-metre well in an area on the western side of Lake Ainslie just south of MacIsaac’s Point. Drilling in the Lake Ainslie area has been put off until at least this spring.”

By September 2010 the Inverness County chapter had sent a letter of concern about the impacts of fracking to Nova Scotia premier Darrell Dexter. In October 2010 chapter activist and Board member Anne Levesque estimated that about 600 people have signed their petition opposing the use of fracking anywhere in Nova Scotia.

Past campaign blog posts on this include: NEWS: Inverness chapter concerned about proposed oil well near Lake Ainslie, http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=4518; NEWS: Levesque speaks out for Lake Ainslie, http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=4749; NEWS: Inverness chapter concerned about Petroworth open house,http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=4933; NEWS: Lake Anslie residents raise concerns about fracking at public meeting, http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=4956.

The Cape Breton Post article is at http://www.capebretonpost.com/Business/2011-02-14/article-2240658/Inverness-County-says-no-to-fracking-as-a-means-of-extracting-oil-and-gas-from-underground/1.