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The New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance (NBASGA) applauds Premier Brian Gallant for following through on his election promise to impose a moratorium on the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing to extract natural gas from shale.

“NBASGA is delighted with the Gallant government’s decision to impose a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in New Brunswick”, said group spokesman Jim Emberger. “We consider this a positive first step in restoring the people’s faith in democracy, and building a future based on sustainable development.”

The process of extraction of natural gas from shale has been proven to be inherently risky. More peer-reviewed studies came out in 2014, than in the previous five years. We now have access to a wealth of studies that show not only potential impacts, but actual impacts on public health and the environment, and in turn, that also assess the long term economic effects of shale gas development.

The Gallant government, in pressing pause, has demonstrated due caution and regard for the health of New Brunswickers in allowing for such studies — which contain data already collected in other jurisdictions around the world — to be thoroughly analyzed.

NBASGA is convinced that careful analysis over time will continue to demonstrate that not only would the development of the shale gas industry in New Brunswick be a net detriment to the people of this province, but will also validate the group’s position that our province needs to shift its economy towards a more sustainable and cleaner model required to address the climate change crisis.

The group intends to continue to work toward that end, and looks forward to collaborating with the Gallant government to broaden the scope and duration of the moratorium, to develop the standards to be used in judging the five conditions, and to promote the clean energy file.