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N.B. Greens vow to ban shale gas development, cancel forestry contracts

New Brunswick Green Party leader David Coon
New Brunswick Green Party leader David Coon unveils his party's platform on Sept. 3, 2014. Laura Brown/Global News

FREDERICTON – New Brunswick’s Green party is promising to ban shale gas development, cancel all contracts signed under the province’s forestry plan and make access to abortion easier.

The measures are among a suite of promises in the party’s platform released Wednesday that the Greens say will improve sustainability and ensure equal access to health care services.

Green party Leader David Coon said he would also end subsidies and tax credits for the resource sector and legislate stronger greenhouse gas reduction targets.

The NDP, Liberals and governing Progressive Conservatives have not yet released their platforms.

The People’s Alliance of New Brunswick released its platform in the first week of the campaign for the Sept. 22 election, which included a promise to balance the budget by 2017-18.

Elsewhere on the campaign trail, the New Democrats said they would eliminate the small business tax within six months of taking office.

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The party said that would cost about $32 million.

In Moncton, Progressive Conservative leader David Alward said his party would promote resource development, which would stop the exodus of people heading west for work — he said 13 charter flights depart the city weekly carrying skilled workers to jobs elsewhere.

He said shale gas and natural resource development will generate about $10 billion in private sector investment, bringing those workers back home.