CPAWS Calls for Fracking Moratorium Based on Select Committee Report

January 19th, 2015

CPAWS Calls for Fracking Moratorium Based on Select Committee Report

Whitehorse – CPAWS Yukon congratulates the Select Committee on the Risks and Benefits of Hydraulic Fracturing on their report and extensive recommendations, but is disappointed in the committee’s inability to explicitly call for a moratorium on fracking.  The committee’s final report makes a convincing case that fracking cannot be done safely and that the Yukon public is strongly opposed to its implementation but falls short of recommending a moratorium on the practice in the Yukon.

“Clearly the Committee has heard the voices of the multitude of the Yukon public, First Nations and experts in the field, and has issued 21 recommendations that together constitute a de facto moratorium on fracking in Yukon” says CPAWS Yukon Executive director Gill Cracknell.

She points to the report’s first recommendation – that the Government of Yukon should have the support of the Yukon First Nations whose traditional territories are affected before allowing hydraulic fracturing – as an example.  “First Nations have already come out publically across the territory in opposition to hydraulic fracturing in their traditional territories until it can be proven safe through science – if you follow this single recommendation through to its logical conclusion, placing a moratorium on the practice is the only way forward for Yukon Government.”

Along with the lack of a solid recommendation for a moratorium on fracking in the territory, CPAWS Yukon is puzzled by the other areas where the Committee failed to reach consensus.  “If you read the report’s twenty-two pages the findings are clear, consistent and overwhelming,” says CPAWS Conservation Campaigner, Amber Church, “with such a burden of evidence, it’s unclear why consensus could not be reached.” 

In particular she points to the statement that the Committee could not reach consensus as to “whether or not social licence from the Yukon public is necessary before considering hydraulic fracturing in Yukon”.  “CPAWS sees this statement as insulting to the public and the amount of energy they have put towards informing this democratic process,” says Church, adding, “In addition we have heard loud and clear from industry that lack of social licence for projects is hurting Yukon’s economy.  For these reasons there should be no uncertainty that social licence is required for hydraulic fracturing to proceed.”


For more information contact:

Gill Cracknell
Executive Director

Amber Church
Conservation Campaigner
867-393-8080 x 2