Thursday, August 14, 2008

Encana pleads not guilty of Canada Wildlife Act violations at Suffield

Energy giant EnCana Corporation, which has been charged with violating Canada’s Wildlife Act within the Suffield National Wildlife Area, has finally, at its seventh court appearance Tuesday, filed a plea: not guilty, of course. (See story.)

Suffield National Wildlife Area near Medicine Hat, Alberta, is home to nearly 100 plant and animal species at risk of extinction (see profiles of some of the endangered species). Just two years after the Government of Canada established an NWA within the Canadian Forces Base at Suffield, a proposed drilling project by EnCana threatens one of the last remaining large intact pieces of pristine prairie grasslands in Canada.

Nature Canada and 6 other environmental groups have formed a coalition to try to save Suffield from this unnecessary, and precedent-setting development. This fall we will be participating in the Joint Review Panel hearing into EnCana’s proposal. For a summary of our concerns about this extensive shallow gas infill project in the Suffield National Wildlife Area, read this other article.

The next step for the court case is to set the date for the trial to begin. It'll be most interesting to see whether it starts before the environmental assessment hearings, scheduled to begin on October 6... I would bet no.

And check our website for more information about our Save Suffield campaign.
Photo: Suffield National Wildlife Area, by Andy Teucher