Fracking pilot project plan is off the table: Kent

A pilot hydraulic fracturing project in southeast Yukon is no longer being considered by the Yukon government, Resources Minister Scott Kent confirmed this morning.

A pilot hydraulic fracturing project in southeast Yukon is no longer being considered by the Yukon government, Resources Minister Scott Kent confirmed this morning.

The Yukon NDP brought forward evidence yesterday that it says shows the Yukon government is pushing for a pilot fracking project in the Liard Basin.

“The minister has told us that there aren’t any applications to frack, but why won’t he tell us that he is pushing a fracking pilot project behind the backs of Yukoners?” asked MLA Kate White in the legislature Tuesday.

The NDP’s evidence is a copy of an email that appears to have been sent from George Ross, deputy minister of Energy, Mines and Resources. It is undated.

It appears to be giving feedback on a draft presentation on the subject of the government’s position on fracking in the territory. The government has promised that a response to a select committee report on the issue will be tabled in the next couple of weeks.

“I believe I communicated a couple of specific actions the M was looking for. Namely a ‘pilot fracing/science project’ in the liard basin with Eflow …” the document reads.

“The M” likely refers to the minister of Energy, Mines and Resources, and “Eflow” likely refers to EFLO Energy Inc, the company with ownership stake in the Kotaneelee gas basin in southeast Yukon.

“That is one of the ideas that I put forward,” Kent confirmed. “To me, it made sense from a research standpoint.”

After further evaluation, though, the idea has been removed from consideration, he said.

“So that won’t be part of our final position, that we’ll be putting forward within the next two weeks.”

White said that the email confirms that the government intends to push ahead with fracking in the territory, despite opposition.

“I think the (select committee) report was perfectly clear that First Nation governments, the scientific community and Yukoners don’t believe that fracking belongs in the territory.”

The government has “been broadcasting their intentions throughout. And that email, to me, just solidifies it,” she said.

In the legislature, Kent pointed to nearby jurisdictions that allow industry to use the controversial fracking technique to get at natural gas resources.

“We will not tolerate any misinformation with respect to fracking,” he said. “We’re going to give full and fair consideration to the facts and to the science. We’re going to cut Hollywood out of this picture, whether it’s Gasland or FrackNation, or whatever program you choose to watch with respect to this practice. We’re going to focus on the science, the facts, and how this industry is perceived and regulated in other jurisdictions.

“Most jurisdictions around the Yukon, including Alaska, British Columbia, the Northwest Territories, Alberta and Saskatchewan, all currently have active hydraulic fracturing projects underway in their jurisdictions. Again, there are none in the Yukon. There are none in the queue to be done here, but the immediate focus will be responding to the committee report, and that’s the work that’s underway right now by the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources – of course, coming forward to my caucus and cabinet colleagues and to this legislature during this spring sitting.”

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at

jronson@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Willow Brewster, a paramedic helping in the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre, holds a swab used for the COVID-19 test moments before using it on Nov. 24. The Yukon government is reopening the drive-thru option on June 18. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Drive-up COVID-19 testing opening June 18 in Whitehorse

The drive-up testing will be open from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. everyday and increase testing capacity by 33 spots

A draft plan has been released by the Dawson Regional Use Planning commission on June 15. Julien Gignac/Yukon News
Draft plan released by the Dawson Regional Land Use Planning Commission

Dawson Regional Land Use Commission releases draft plan, Government of Yukon withdraws additional lands from mineral staking in the planning region

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Let them live in trailers

“I found Rome a city of bricks and left it a city… Continue reading

X
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for June 18, 2021.… Continue reading

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Yukon News file)
Yukon logs nine new COVID-19 cases, 54 active cases

More CEMA enforcement officers have been recruited, officials say

Whitehorse City Hall (Yukon News file)
City news, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council at its June 14 meeting

Murray Arsenault sits in the drivers seat of his 1975 Bricklin SV1 in Whitehorse on June 16. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Bringing the 1975 Bricklin north

Murray Arsenault remembers his dad’s Bricklin, while now driving his own

A presumptive COVID case was found at Seabridge Gold’s 3 Aces project. (file photo)
Presumptive COVID-19 case reported at mine in southeast Yukon

A rapid antigen rest found a presumptive COVID case on an incoming individual arriving at the 3Aces project

Jonathan Antoine/Cabin Radio
Flooding in Fort Simpson on May 8.
Fort Simpson asked for military help. Two people showed up.

FORT SIMPSON—Residents of a flooded Northwest Territories village expected a helping hand… Continue reading

A woman was rescued from the Pioneer Ridge Trail in Alaska on June 16. (Photo courtesy/AllTrails)
Alaska hiker chased off trail by bears flags down help

ANCHORAGE (AP)—An Alaska hiker who reported needing help following bear encounters on… Continue reading

Two participants cross the finish line at the City of Whitehorse Kids Triathlon on June 12 with Mayor Dan Curtis on hand to present medals. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
2021 Kids’ Triathlon draws 76 young athletes

Youth ages five to 14 swim, run and bike their way to finish line

NDP MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq rises in the House of Commons, in Ottawa on May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Unacceptable’ that Inuk MP felt unsafe in House of Commons, Miller says

OTTAWA—It’s a “sad reflection” on Canada that an Inuk MP feels she’s… Continue reading

Lily Witten performs her Canadian Nationals beam routine on June 14. John Tonin/Yukon News
Three Yukon gymnasts break 20-year Nationals absence

Bianca Berko-Malvasio, Maude Molgat and Lily Witten competed at the Canadian Nationals – the first time in 20 years the Yukon’s been represented at the meet

Most Read