Nova Scotia fracking studies flawed, says EAC
Critics are speaking out against two Nova Scotia studies that say hydraulic fracturing would not pose a serious threat to the province‘s groundwater supply.
The two draft reports released Tuesday by an expert panel say if the contentious extraction process was closely monitored and properly regulated, serious threats to the groundwater supply could be avoided.
The panel, led by Cape Breton University president David Wheeler, also concluded the province’s reasonably stable geology would make contamination of drinking water wells less likely than in other areas.
‘The panel stated they wanted this to be a science-based process, but I see pages upon pages with no references, no peer-reviewed reports at all.’- Jennifer West, EAC geoscience co-ordinator
As well, the panel says that ensuring drilling sites are properly installed would be relatively easy, adding that the industry in Alberta could serve as a good role model.
“It is a relatively straightforward task to establish good monitoring and regulatory practices to ensure that the site is geologically understood, that wells are properly installed,” one report says.
“Although rigorous statistics remain elusive, it seems that the number of problems encountered in Alberta and British Columbia, both relatively mature regulatory environments, is not large. … The mature regulatory practices of jurisdictions such as Alberta could serve as a guide to the establishment of a system in Nova Scotia.”
Studies flawed, says EAC
But a spokeswoman for the Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre says the two studies, posted online Tuesday for public debate, are flawed.
“The panel stated that they wanted this to be a science-based