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Halifax Contingent Heads to Unama'ki to Join Anti-Drilling Partial Blockade

Fear of fracking spurs on growing movement to protect Lake Ainslie

by Miles Howe

Halifax Anti-Frack brigade heads to Unama'ki [Miles Howe photo]
Halifax Anti-Frack brigade heads to Unama'ki [Miles Howe photo]

K'JIPUKTUK (Halifax) - A small but musical group headed out of Halifax this afternoon to join the ongoing partial blockade of the Canso Causeway, access point to Cape Breton.

The partial blockade, initiated by the Mi'kmaq of Unama'ki (Cape Breton) and the surrounding environs -  but with an open invitation to all - has declared that it will only end when a moratorium to oil and gas drilling in Cape Breton is reinstated by the provincial government of Nova Scotia. Actions at Auld's Cove are scheduled to resume on September 22nd if the moratorium is not put in place.

Currently there has only been one exploratory drilling permit granted to junior Toronto-based oil and gas company Petroworth Resources Inc, but those at the blockade, and beyond, have noted that if gas is found in one exploratory well it might easily lead to extraction by the water-intensive hydraulic fracturing technique - commonly known as "fracking."

Fracking slickwater, injected into the well under high pressure, contains a cornucopia of toxic chemicals, and has a track record of upsetting water tables and turning potable water into flammable material.

Also of concern is whether the province of Nova Scotia will continue to forbid filthy "fracked" water from being re-injected into the earth. This 'out-of-sight-out-of-mind' technique of letting the earth theoretically take care of the waste product is a much cheaper option than forcing the implicated drillers to somehow treat the radioactive water that fracking creates.

Steve Wendland recently reported in the Halifax Media Co-op that intense pressure was exerted by Denver-based Triangle Petroleum Corporation upon the provincial government to allow them to re-inject fracked water from their gas wells in Hants County. At that point the government held firm. In response, Triangle fled the Nova Scotia scene, but they left radioactive slickwater in a number of currently leaking holding tanks. There is no treatment facility capable of dealing with radioactive water in Atlantic Canada, which raises the ominous spectre of the province having once again no plan to deal with potentially radioactive waste water at the Lake Ainslie site, save that of backtracking on its re-injection regulations.

Please enjoy the following audio interviews with Anti-frackers Jen and Elder Billy Lewis.

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