Shale gas exploration can resume, judge rules



A judge on Monday dismissed Elsipogtog First Nations' bid to stop shale gas exploration in an area of New Brunswick they claim belongs to them.

SWN Resources Canada was forced to stop its exploration work in September after protesters put up a blockade at the worksite near Laketon, 100 km north of Moncton.

The Natives say extracting shale gas using hydraulic fracking threatens groundwater supplies and treaty rights.

The protest turned violent on Oct. 17 when RCMP tried to enforce an injunction to remove the blockade.

Police arrested 40 protesters on charges including firearms offences and uttering threats after police cruisers were set ablaze.

SWN returned to the worksite on Nov. 12, but on Thursday the company's so-called thumper trucks were stopped on the highway by protesters.

One woman was arrested Thursday for mischief, and RCMP were investigating several reports of vandalism after an SNW truck and several pieces of equipment were damaged.

The Elsipogtog protesters have threatened demonstrations will continue.

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