Liberals back moratorium on shale gas exploration

New Brunswick's Liberal Party passed resolutions calling for a shale gas exploration moratorium and backing access to abortion options at Saturday's policy conference.

New Brunswick's Official Opposition also supports better access to abortion amendment

Anti-shale gas activists demonstrate at the Liberal convention. (Jacques Poitras/CBC)

New Brunswick's Liberal Party passed resolutions calling for a shale gas exploration moratorium and backing more access to abortion options at Saturday's policy conference. 

Leader Brian Gallant has called for a moratorium. The Progressive Conservative government supports shale gas exploration. 

Saturday was the first time party members had a chance to express their opinions. One delegate said they should support the exploration for economic reasons. 

Another wanted a tougher, four-year moratorium. 

The original motion passed, but the wording gives them an out should the Liberals win the next election. 

It would let them lift a moratorium if the public health office's recommendation for more health protections are adopted. 

It also passed a resolution to re-examine the imposition of shared-risk pensions on civil service and retirees. 

An abortion-rights amendment passed with strong support. It called for "improved access to reproductive health services."

The issue has been in the news because the Morgentaler abortion clinic in Fredericton is closing at the end of July following a 20-year fight with the New Brunswick government over funding.

Follow the CBC's Jacques Poitras at the convention for the latest news. 


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