Murphy wants full disclosure on fracking chemicals

NDP Environment and Conservation critic George Murphy

NDP Environment and Conservation critic George Murphy (MHA, St. John’s East) wants to know if the province’s controversial access to information laws will block public knowledge of the chemicals that will be used should hydraulic fracturing go ahead in the province.

The government has pledged to maintain a moratorium on fracking while officials evaluate the potential dangers in the project. Murphy wants assurances that, should fracking eventually be permitted, companies engaged in the practice will not be able to hide behind Bill 29.

“Under Bill 29, proprietary information may be considered out of bounds for public knowledge. That might include a toxic soup of fracking chemicals,” Murphy said in the House of Assembly today.

“How does government plan to allow the full disclosure of fracking chemicals under this law?”

Murphy suggests that legislative measures may be necessary to ensure companies cannot hide the chemicals they are using from public scrutiny. Hydrochloric acid, formaldehyde and benzene are among those that have been used for fracking in the past.

“Will the government repeal Bill 29, or will they come out with another act to ensure the full disclosure of fracking chemicals?” he wanted to know.

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