BC Premier Premier Christy Clark is poised to give away 3 BILLION litres of water every year from the Fort Nelson River in northeast BC to Encana for fracking. This river is the lifeblood of the Fort Nelson First Nation.
And that’s just the beginning. There are several more approvals in the works for long-term water withdrawal licenses that will give away trillions of litres of fresh water to shale gas companies—all without proper consultation with First Nations or the public!
Fort Nelson First Nation has worked with the natural gas industry and government to provide economic opportunities for it members and the entire province through responsible resource development. But our concerns regarding irresponsible, unsustainable water use have gone ignored. Now our community is forced to stand in defence of our life-sustaining waters and responsible development.
Fort Nelson First Nation is calling on Premier Christy Clark to cease the issuance of all long-term water withdrawal licenses to the shale gas industry until the Province has thoroughly consulted with First Nations and the public in the development of a clear, responsible, and effective water management plan. This plan must include adequate baseline studies, proper regional monitoring, cumulative impact assessment, and protected areas to sustain fish and wildlife habitat.
We believe that shale gas development can occur without full-scale damage to our rivers, lakes and streams, but it will take a strong commitment from local communities, governments and oil and gas companies to do the right thing. Please join us in sending this message to Premier Christy Clark and help us protect our water!
The introduction of shale gas extraction and hydraulic fracking methods, in British Columbia could present the largest and most destructive industrial force that our waters have ever known. But it doesn't have to.
I am aware that your government is poised to issue more than 20 long-term water licences for fracking throughout northern BC – amounting to tens of billions of litres of fresh water every year. I am also aware that government decision-making processes are lacking and the public is not being fully informed or consulted about water use and shale gas development in BC.
Protecting our rivers from the harmful effects of shale gas development is a responsibility of us all. Therefore, I request that the BC government cease the approval of all permanent water licences for hydraulic fracking in BC until the Province has thoroughly consulted with First Nations and the public in the development of a clear, responsible, sustainable water management plan. This plan must include adequate baseline studies, proper monitoring, cumulative impact assessment, and ensure important habitat is projected for fish and wildlife.
I stand with Fort Nelson First Nation in defending their vital, life-sustaining waters.