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Quebec bans fracking, for now

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Since we now know that fracking is linked to earthquakes, at least some politicians are doing the sensible thing and pausing the process while tests are run. What good is it for a community if the process is ruining the community?

The province of Quebec has moved from a de facto ban on shale gas development to a "complete and total moratorium," lamented Calgary oilpatch executive Michael Binnion on Tuesday, following news that a review on hydraulic fracturing won't include any demonstrations in the province.

A committee named by Quebec Environment Minister Pierre Arcand to determine whether shale gas can be extracted while respecting the environment released plans Tuesday for further study and recommended the minister not authorize hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, even for research purposes during an ongoing halt in development.

Arcand, in announcing the strategic environmental assessment last May, had said fracking would be allowed for research purposes. Committee chair Robert Joly said in his report that Quebec could rely on laboratory experiments on fracking.

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