Thursday , July 29 2021

A new debate about fracking in New York has sprung up in Moncton – New Brunswick

Energy officials met with opposition outside panel discussions in Moncton on Thursday.

This session was held to discuss the state of natural gas supply beyond 2018, when they said the Offshore Energy Project was expected to be closed.

However, concerns from the Maritimes Energy Association are about gas transportation – not much.

READ MORE: Sussex-area MLA pushed to end a portion of the New Brunswick fracking moratorium by Christmas

Industry leaders in dozens took part in the discussion.

Callum Smith / Global News

"The challenge we have is moving gas to the market," said Ray Ritcey, who is the CEO of the association.

"It depends on certain times of the year – especially the coldest days of the year – there are bottlenecks that must be accommodated and finally removed to have the gas flow here freely."

Officials say supply is not a concern, because they can switch to producers in western Canada or in the United States.

But for protesters outside, they hope the fracking moratorium in New Brunswick will not be revoked, and renewable energy is actually viewed.

"To rummage, you need to pollute all this water because you have to inject all the water to get shale gas," said protester Paul Bossé.

"The Canadian Supreme Court has ruled that if you will extract anything, you should consult with Aboriginal people," said Kenneth Francis, from Kopit Lodge Elfromogtog First Nation.

This inn was established and directed by the Council Band Resolution to become "the official consultation body on the issue of extracting any resources in the traditional territory of this community."

A topic Ritcey said was separate from Thursday's discussion, but acknowledged that the newly appointed provincial government must have appropriate consultation with the community.

Ray Ritcey is the CEO of The Maritimes Energy Association

"If the new government in New Brunswick wants to increase the existing moratorium, that's a good thing," he said.

The challenge of getting gas from western Canada and the United States is transportation and possible additional costs.

"Extra costs for pipelines are offset by lower gas costs that we can get from Alberta, for example," said Gilles Volpé, who is general manager of Enbridge Gas New Brunswick.

Volpe says supply in Alberta is currently cheaper than local production.

But rising costs will not be a concern for the New Brunswick-based producer Corridor Resources Inc., according to The Maritimes Energy Association.

"It's in the market, so there's no need to incur significant costs, or add the cost of the pipeline, to bring it from another inventory in North America," Ritcey said.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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