The Saint Croix Courier

St. Stephen, NB

2007 January 12

LNG opponents meet minister


ST. ANDREWS — Several of those involved in the fight against liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Passamaquoddy Bay met with Minister of Veterans Affairs and MP for New Brunswick Southwest Greg Thompson this week to discuss their concerns.

Councillor David Welch said at Monday night's town council meeting that he, together with Councillor Mary Myers, Janice Harvey, and Margot Magee-Sackett met with the MP for an hour Monday.

He said both Quoddy Bay LLC and Down East LNG have applied to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and that process is now under way, but it really is only the beginning.

"Today's meeting, I think, assured us that the federal government is 100 percent behind stopping LNG in Passamaquoddy Bay."

During a television interview over Christmas, when Prime Minister Stephen Harper was asked what his two key issues with the Bush government were, he said one was sovereignty in the north and the other was LNG tankers in Passamaquoddy Bay, said Welch.

He said during their meeting with Thompson they talked extensively about timelines and what the government is planning. Welch said it is difficult for the government to know when it is the right time to strike but they have always said they will do everything they can both legally and diplomatically to stop this.

"We do understand that if you strike too soon these things can be done away with in court and so on.... These are matters of international sovereignty and this is not lost on the government whatsoever."

Welch said they came out of their meeting with Thompson with assurances that the federal government is doing everything possible and they will continue to work together on the issue.

Both companies put in their applications basically on Christmas Eve which Welch described as a little underhanded as this was probably a ploy to catch people off-guard.

He said the provincial government will be intervening on behalf of the municipalities in Charlotte County, and Save Passamaquoddy Bay Canada, which the town is helping to fund, is also registered as an intervener.

"I feel it is just the beginning.... It is going to be a much longer process. There are issues, of course, surrounding the abilities of these companies to bring their product to market and those are huge issues for them — finding a source and finding someone who can buy the product."


© 2007 Advocate Media
Article republished on Save Passamaquoddy Bay website with permission.

The Saint Croix Courier, St. Stephen, NB