Sierra Club Atlantic calls for commitments to protect water
ORWELL – Sierra Club Canada – Atlantic Canada chapter is asking for a ban on fracking for natural gas, an end to fish kills and degradation of rivers through nitrates and sediment run off, and an investment in sewage treatment for Charlottetown as three key commitments needed from candidates in the P.E.I. provincial election. Sierra Club Atlantic members gathered on P.E.I. last weekend to celebrate their 10th anniversary and to talk about key issues in the region. One of the key areas discussed was the need to protect Prince Edward Island's precious water ways and fresh water resources.
“This weekend we learned how crucial it is for an Island as small as P.E.I., with its limited fresh water resources, to protect and conserve its water,” according to Gretchen Fitzgerald, chapter director of the Sierra Club Atlantic.
“As well, we heard from fishermen that their livelihoods are in danger and frankly, the Island way of life is being threatened.”
Participants at the meeting learned that watershed groups are working to protect watershed throughout the province, but their efforts continue to be hindered by pollution from pesticides and fertilizers that cause fish kills.
"Industry states that up to 20 million litres of water is required for the hydraulic fracture stimulation of a single well," according to Hazel Richardson, newly elected member of the chapter's executive committee.
“This water is mixed with sand and a range of additives, some of which are known to be harmful to the environment and to human health. The wastewater from the wells is treated as toxic waste. We cannot risk contamination of our groundwater; particularly on P.E.I., where all the drinking water supplies come from groundwater sources.”
“We also want thorough investigation and prosecutions of those linked to fish kills. This day and age we cannot ignore the impact of loss of species and habitat on our health and our economy,” said Fred Winsor, conservation chair of the chapter.
RELATED: Media Release, Sept. 19, 2011