Municipalities ready to resort to the courts to protect their drinking water

News 24 March, 2018
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    QMI agency

    Saturday, 24 march, 2018 20:14

    Saturday, 24 march, 2018 20:14

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    DRUMMONDVILLE | representatives of municipalities wishing to protect the sources of drinking water for possible oil and gas installations have voted Saturday in favour of recourse to the courts if they don’t get the permission from the government for their own purposes.

    The 338 municipalities members of the steering Committee of the joint initiative of the municipalities in favour of a derogation from the Regulation on the collection of waters and their protection are demanding the power to impose distances of a minimum of 2 km between their sources of drinking water and possible oil and gas installations, rather than the 500 metres stipulated by the government.

    To do this, they must obtain government authorization to derogate from the Rules on the taking of waters and their protection.

    “We want to leave all the place for the discussion, said, Saturday, after a meeting in Drummondville, Gerard Jean, mayor of Lanoraie and spokesperson for the Committee. But we are prepared for all contingencies.”

    These municipalities are now awaiting the response of the minister of the Environment, Isabelle Melançon, who “has demonstrated a high degree of responsiveness and openness of mind, last Tuesday, during a meeting with the mayors of the steering committee”, one can read in a press release from the Committee, published after the meeting in Drummondville on Saturday. “She has, indeed, begun to make a response and a follow-up in the week of April 9.”

    “If we were to have a negative response, we will have in hand a major tool,” added the mayor, Jean.