Say no to oil and gas

Open letter to Energy, Mines and Resources Brad Cathers: As a resident of the southern lakes area, I would like to express my deepest concern about the projected oil and gas exploration and development for the Whitehorse Trough.

Open letter to Energy, Mines and Resources Brad Cathers:

As a resident of the southern lakes area, I would like to express my deepest concern about the projected oil and gas exploration and development for the Whitehorse Trough.

My partner and I have done almost nothing else for the past few weeks but gather information about drilling practices, especially fracking techniques. Wherever we look, we find there are big environmental problems – well water contaminated, surface water contaminated, whole watersheds contaminated and every living thing in them extinguished. What is left is waste land.

Yes, there is the odd well that didn’t cause any direct problems. But what about the waste water, where did it get dumped? In surface pits, where the high salt content of this waste water attracts wildlife? (And don’t tell me that a flimsy snow fence will hinder a bull moose who wants to drink out of it.)

Or was it transported to a sewage-treatment facility that was never designed to deal with highly toxic chemicals and radioactive waste?

Or pumped deep underground where it will stay for thousands of years, can never be tested again and suddenly will appear in drinking-water aquifers after an earthquake, even many generations down the road?

Do you want to carry the responsibility for something like that? Can you carry that responsibility?

Brad, I have known you for years. You grew up drinking water directly from a clear creek.

Do you now get a buzz from drinking chlorinated water?

I saw you last week squirm in the legislative assembly, not answering the questions of the opposition.

Please do the right thing. Don’t let big oil companies rule the Yukon.

Please invest more in renewable resources – wood gasification, geothermal heat, solar and wind.

The technologies are there. Nobody has to invent the wheel again.

Werner Rhein

Mount Lorne

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