The provincial government introduced legislation that would prohibit fracking throughout the province until concerns about health, the environment and First Nations input are addressed.
Gallant placed conditions on the legislation including a process to consult with First Nations, a plan that mitigates the impact on public infrastructure and addresses waste water disposal and credible information about the effects fracking has on health, water and the environment.
The development of a royalty structure and a 'social licence' ensuring that the public accepts fracking are also needed before the moratorium would be removed, Gallant said, though he acknowledged that last condition has yet to be defined.
"We have been clear from Day 1 that we will impose a moratorium until risks to the environment, health and water are understood," Gallant told a news conference in Fredericton.
"We believe these conditions to be very reasonable."
He said his government supports job creation but added that it needs to be done in a diversified and sustainable way.
"We're not interested in putting all of our eggs in a single basket," he said.
A number of companies are exploring for shale gas in the province and Corridor Resources recently fracked wells in the Penobsquis area that are used to supply gas to the nearby Potash Corp. mine.
Gallant said such operations would be allowed to continue under the legislation, as long as they don't rely on fracking.
"We'll certainly also always listen to businesses that may have concerns and try to mitigate some of the…
Province: | Section : Provincial News