Fracking experts to converge on Yukon

The fracking debate will get crowded next week, when at least three experts on the subject will visit Yukon. "My position is that fracking cannot be regulated safely," said Will Koop, co-ordinator for the B.C.

The fracking debate will get crowded next week, when at least three experts on the subject will visit Yukon.

“My position is that fracking cannot be regulated safely,” said Will Koop, co-ordinator for the B.C. Tap Water Alliance.

Koop will speak Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre. He was invited by Yukoners Concerned about Oil and Gas Exploration/Development.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a controversial method of extracting natural gas that involves pumping a pressurized slurry of water, sand and chemicals into wells deep underground.

It accounts for a growing percentage of North America’s natural gas supply, as conventional reserves dwindle.

Koop has been independently researching and publishing reports on the natural gas industry since 2010.

He has started a website, Stop Fracking B.C., where he compiles and publishes information.

“The first thing that horrified me about it was the tremendous amount of water being used.”

Two recent reports that he has written, the Tip of B.C.‘s Fracking Iceberg, and Frack-Math Confidential, show perhaps for the first time the true water usage in B.C.‘s industry, he said.

Koop also hopes to meet with politicians and other groups during his visit.

Also on Wednesday, the Yukon Chamber of Commerce will host speakers from the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and MGM Energy Group.

Although the presenters could not be reached for comment by press time, these industry representatives will certainly present a contradictory point of view from Koop’s.

The event will take place at the High Country Inn from 11:45 through 1:30 p.m. Seating is limited, RSVP is required, and the cost is $30.

On Friday, Yukon College will host Brad Hayes from the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists.

He will speak about what unconventional oil and gas development means for future geoscientists.

The college’s mineral resources program will host the talk, and it is open to the public. It will occur at 4:30 p.m. Friday at the college.

Meanwhile, the Yukon’s select committee on the risks and benefits of hydraulic fracturing have just returned from a reconnaissance mission to Alberta.

The six MLAs on the committee travelled to Red Deer and Calgary to tour fracking operations and meet with officials.

The group must make recommendations to the Yukon government by this spring on whether of not fracking should be allowed in the Yukon, and under what conditions.

Members of the committee were not available to comment on how the trip went by press time.

Hydraulic fracturing within Yukon’s borders is not imminent, although exploration work continues in Eagle Plain.

Northern Cross plans to complete an extensive seismic survey of oil and gas resources in the area this winter.

There have been, however, several pushes to burn liquefied natural gas here in recent months.

Liquefied natural gas is super-cooled for storage and transportation. It is, at least potentially, produced through fracking.

Yukon Electrical Co. Ltd. received a permit to construct and operate an LNG facility in Watson Lake last month.

The company plans to burn LNG in addition to diesel in that community to reduce energy costs.

And here in Whitehorse, Yukon Energy is in the final stages of an application to install two natural gas generators to power Yukon’s energy grid.

Today is the final day for public comment on the proposal.

Western Copper and Gold Corp. has just this week submitted a proposal to the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board for its massive Casino mine project.

That mine is many years away, if it is constructed at all, but the company’s plan is to power it with 150 megawatts of natural gas generation.

That’s more than the capacity of all of Yukon’s hydro, wind and diesel plants combined.

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at

jronson@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

In a Feb. 17 statement, the City of Whitehorse announced it had adopted the what3words location technology used for emergency response. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Three words could make all the difference in an emergency

City of Whitehorse announced it had adopted the what3words location technology

Jesse Whelen, Blood Ties Four Directions harm reduction councillor, demonstrates how the organization tests for fentanyl in drugs in Whitehorse on May 12, 2020. The Yukon Coroner’s Service has confirmed three drug overdose deaths and one probable overdose death since mid-January. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Three overdose deaths caused by “varying levels of cocaine and fentanyl,” coroner says

Heather Jones says overdoses continue to take lives at an “alarming rate”

Wyatt's World for Feb. 24, 2021.
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for Feb. 24, 2021.

Approximately 30 Yukoners protest for justice outside the Whitehorse courthouse on Feb. 22, while a preliminary assault hearing takes place inside. The Whitehorse rally took place after the Liard Aboriginal Women’s Society, based in Watson Lake, put out a call to action over the weekend. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Courthouse rally denounces violence against Indigenous women

The Whitehorse rally took place after the Liard Aboriginal Women’s Society put out a call to action

The now empty lot at 410 Cook Street in Whitehorse on January 19. As developers move forward with plans for a housing development that would feature 16 micro-units, they are asking city council for a zoning change that would reduce the number of required parking spaces. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Parking problems predicted

Zoning amendment would create more on-street parking issues, residents say

Susie Rogan is a veteran musher with 14 years of racing experience and Yukon Journey organizer. (Yukon Journey Facebook)
Yukon Journey mushers begin 255-mile race

Eleven mushers are participating in the race from Pelly Crossing to Whitehorse

David Malcolm, 40, has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm a police officer after an incident in Whitehorse on Feb. 18.	(Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Man resists arrest, assaults officer

A Whitehorse man has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm… Continue reading

Yukon Energy in Whitehorse on Aug. 4, 2020. A site on Robert Service Way near the Alaska Highway has been selected as the future home of Yukon Energy’s energy storage project. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Site selected for Yukon Energy battery project

Planned to be in service by the end of 2022

The Yukon government and the Yukon First Nations Chamber of Commerce have signed a letter of understanding under the territory’s new procurement policy. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
First Nation business registry planned under new procurement system

Letter of understanding signals plans to develop registry, boost procurement opportunities

US Consul General Brent Hardt during a wreath-laying ceremony at Peace Arch State Park in September 2020. Hardt said the two federal governments have been working closely on the issue of appropriate border measures during the pandemic. (John Kageorge photo)
New U.S. consul general says countries working closely on COVID-19 border

“I mean, the goal, obviously, is for both countries to get ahead of this pandemic.”

Legislative assembly on the last day of the fall sitting in Whitehorse on Nov. 22, 2018. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Start of spring sitting announced

The Yukon legislature is set to resume for the spring sitting on… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse City Council this week

(Submitted)
History Hunter: Kwanlin Dün — a book of history, hardship and hope

Dǎ Kwǎndur Ghày Ghàkwadîndur: Our Story in Our Words is published by… Continue reading

Most Read