Concerns raised over fracking water disposal
Critics not convinced that fracking water pilot project successful at removing contamination
People are raising concerns about the disposal of fracking waste water in Colchester County after municipal staff gave the green light to put the water through its sewage treatment system.
Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau said the decision comes after a pilot project designed to remove radioactive elements was completed.
"We're pleased with the progress of this particular pilot project and I want to assure the public this meets the federal guidelines," he said.
Belliveau said the project has been successful in removing radioactive materials from the water but Andrew Younger, the Liberal environment critic, remains skeptical.
"We have not seen the tests on what the water contained when it went into the system and we haven't seen tests that show what the level of contamination is when it comes out of that system. That information has to become public," said Younger.
Jennifer West of the Ecology Action Center agrees.
"All of the communities along the Chiganois River all along the Minas Basin and Bay of Fundy and all of the ecosystems — the fish — all of the animals living in these areas are at risk and we need to be aware of that. It's not just us," she said.
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, involves blasting a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into a well bore to split the surrounding rock and release trapped hydrocarbons, usually natural gas, coal bed methane or crude oil.
Concerned citizens have until April 10 to appeal. If they do, it will then be up to council to make the final decision.