Harper moving ahead with plan to extract resources from Gulf of St. Lawrence

APTN National News
Under the protest of many First Nations, Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Quebec are both expected to table legislation by the end of year to jointly manage the petroleum resources in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Harper made the announcement in Sept-Iles Tuesday morning along with Denis Lebel, the federal cabinet minister responsible for Quebec’s economic development.

Also in attendance was Quebec’s junior transport minister, Jean D’Amour.

Harper said Ottawa and Quebec are well-positioned to table the legislative framework to implement an accord that was signed in 2011.

Ottawa estimates that the Gulf of St. Lawrence and surrounding areas have the potential for 39 trillion cubic feet of gas and 1.5 billion barrels of oil.

In July, First Nation leaders from across Atlantic Canada spoke out about proposed drilling in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Mi’kmaq, Maliseet and Innu chiefs gathered during the AFN’s annual general meeting to voice their concern. They said they don’t want to wait until a spill happens before they speak up as reported in this APTN story.

– with files from The Canadian Press

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