New Brunswick chiefs unified to ensure province consults over shale gas

FILE - This Jan. 15, 2015 file photo shows an almond tree by a pumpjack in Shafter in California's Central Valley. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

New Brunswick’s Indigenous leaders are again expressing their concerns about consultations with the province’s Progressive Conservative government around shale gas development.

In a news release, the province’s 15 Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqey chiefs says they are officially putting the provincial government on notice that they will continue efforts to protect the lands, water, and resources of New Brunswick.

READ MORE: New Brunswick fracking debate reignited in Moncton

The chiefs say they are committed to taking a “strong and unified stand” in ensuring the Crown meets its consultation obligations.

In June, the chiefs issued a warning after learning the government of Premier Blaine Higgs quietly passed regulatory changes that would allow the extraction of hydrocarbons through the process known as fracking, in the Sussex area.

At the time, the chiefs denounced the move as secretive and a step backwards in the province’s relationship with Indigenous populations.

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WATCH: Indigenous chiefs left ‘blindsided’ by N.B. decision to lift fracking moratorium

Click to play video: 'Indigenous chiefs left ‘blindsided’ by N.B. decision to lift fracking moratorium'
Indigenous chiefs left ‘blindsided’ by N.B. decision to lift fracking moratorium

The minority government’s move fulfilled a commitment in its throne speech and was consistent with the Tory party’s past support for fracking.

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