New Brunswick

Police remove shale gas supporter from anti-shale event

An anti-shale gas event in Moncton on Wednesday was disrupted by a shale gas supporter who had to be removed by police officers.

Angry man worried about losing job attends Anti-Shale Gas Alliance news conference in Moncton

Police had to be called to an anti-shale gas news conference in Moncton on Wednesday morning to deal with an angry man.

Members of the New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance held a news conference in Moncton Wednesday to express concerns that politicians running in the provincial election don't understand all of the facts about fracking. (Michèle Brideau/Radio-Canada)
Jim Emberger, a spokesperson for the New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance, says the man arrived before the scheduled event and began shouting and pushing people around because he is afraid of losing his job if there is a ban on fracking in the province.

Police officers had to remove the man, said Emberger.

"I really don't want this press conference to be about what happened here this morning," he said.

"It was a very rare incident. I'm sorry that the police were still here when you guys got here because it was quick, dirty, it was over with and we're not planning on pursuing anything about it so, let's leave it there."

Emberger says his group is concerned that politicians running in the provincial election don't understand all of the facts regarding their concerns about hydraulic-fracturing.

Hydraulic-fracturing, also known as hydro-fracking or fracking, is a process that involves pumping a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into the ground at high pressure, which creates cracks in shale rock formations and allows companies to extract natural gas from areas that would otherwise go untapped.

As a result, New Brunswickers who are looking for the facts about shale gas aren't getting them from the current political debate and they're being misled, he said.

"The numbers cited by our government appear to be picked from thin air, are baseless and are designed just for the election," the NBASGA said a press release issued Sept. 17. "We have all heard David Alward claim that by drilling a modest 50 wells per year, the province will earn $200 million in annual royalties. His math even baffles our province's top economists."

Royalties from the approximately 50 gas and oil wells will instead average $1 million a year and produce an average of four jobs per well rather than 21 jobs as reported by the province, the release goes on to say.

The NBASGA also suggests retrofitting infrastructure for energy efficiency and alternative energy will create more jobs and will prevent the addition of a new source of greenhouse gases.

In June, the group announced it is suing the provincial government over plans to develop the shale-gas industry.

"The lawsuit that we have filed awaits whichever party wins the election," states the press release.