You may have heard about Petrolia having troubles drilling their well in the Gaspe due to special new rules made by the municipality.
It shouldn't be a surprise that a municipality decided to make its own rules. The Government of Quebec won't tell anyone how it works or what the benefits are. It's like a national secret kept securely in the vaults of the BAPE.
The Government of Quebec wasn't so circumspect about the Plan Nord. The Plan Nord got an information campaign. The Premier gave speeches all over Quebec. The speeches were so popular the Premier said even the protesting students in Montreal were trying to get in...
The Government didn't stop there with their Plan Nord campaign. They even travelled around the world. If you can believe it, I was invited to attend a Plan Nord information session in Oslo, Norway.
What bothers me most is that the Plan Nord even got a very nice video.
Why don't we have a beautiful video for oil and gas in Quebec? Why won't the Government explain it to anyone? Their internal experts won't even explain it to the municipal Governments.
We saw in the Plan Nord how the environment was protected and what the benefits were to Quebec. We also saw very clearly there were also benefits to local regions.
I have met with seven MRC's in the St. Lawrence Valley. They want to know the answers to these things about oil & gas:
- How can they be sure that it can be done safely?
- How can they be satisfied Government experts are watching the companies?
- What infrastructure benefits will there be?
- What new revenues will they get?
- How many local jobs will there be?
Every local town doesn't want to hire engineers and geologists to supervise oil and gas drilling. They don't all want to have different rules. This makes things less safe not more safe.
They do want someone to consult with them, inform them and tell them what's in it for them.
Municipalities have heard from industry. Now they need to hear from Government too.
Why can't we all agree on that? Why not a video?