New Brunswick

Scrap shale gas, First Nations tell provincial commission on Hydraulic Fracturing

Members of Elsipogtog First Nation told the New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing they do not want shale gas development in their backyard. The commission met with several groups in Richibucto.

Aboriginal group recommends a permanent moratorium

Willi Nolan of Harcourt spoke for First Nations people at the New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing meeting in Richibucto (CBC)

In a closed door meeting, members of Elsipogtog First Nation told the New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing they do not want shale gas development in their backyard.

The New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing met with several groups at the Anchor Community Centre in Richibucto.

We know the risks of shale gas, they completely outweigh any benefits.- Willi Nolan, Mi'kmaq spokesperson

​Willi Nolan spoke on behalf of one group made up of several Mi'kmaq residents.

"We're asking that the commission just recommend a permanent moratorium on hydraulic fracturing," said Nolan.

Nolan, who lives in Harcourt, participated in the shale gas protests in the Rexton area in 2013.

Participants at the Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing hearings in Richibucto (Michel Nogue/Radio-Canada)

"We know the risks of shale gas, they completely outweigh any benefits. We know that we got volumes of science on our side. We know that the violations of indigenous rights is unlawful," said Nolan.

The commission was appointed by the provincial government to study the facts and to speak to New Brunswickers about their thoughts on hydraulic fracturing.

Commissioner Marc Léger says he has met with at least 30 groups.

Marc Leger is the commissioner for the hearings into hydraulic fracturing (CBC)

"Our process is to put everything we receive in terms of submissions on our website. So the presentations that we received today will be available within a few days on our website," said Léger.

"People want New Brunswickers to see what they've told us."

The commission will be in Saint John on October 26 to meet with the Aboriginal Business Council, and then in Moncton on October 27.

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