NWT Petroleum Legislation Proposal Seriously Deficient
April 23, 2018
The NWT Chapter of the Council of Canadians has submitted comprehensive comments on the Government of the Northwest Territories’ proposals for legislation governing petroleum development and industry operations.
The Chapter submission points out a wide array of shortcomings in the GNWT’s suggestions for a legislative framework, including:
- Failure to address and uphold the requirements of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People’s, which the NWT Legislative Assembly endorsed unanimously in 2008;
- The lack of integration and cohesion of the legislation with other renewable and non-renewable regulatory regimes;
- Its allowance of the acceptability of horizontal fracturing—fracking—for petroleum resources, including the failure to heed best scientific evidence of the environmental and human health harms of the practice, or to carry out regional analysis of fracking in the NWT;
- The unacceptable ethics of assigning responsibility for regulating petroleum exploration and development to the same ministry responsible for promoting petroleum industry development;
- The lack of enforceable requirements for the posting of full financial security to meet the costs of environmental remediation and site abandonment, and,
- A wide variety of other concerns.