Coalbed Methane Rallies in Fernie and Princeton

Recapping The Call-In

The last satisfACTION post gave an account of a recent issue ‘call-in’, where hundreds and hundreds of people across BC and Alberta picked up the phone and called the office of BC Premier Gordon Campbell and Shell Canada President Brian Straub, asking them to keep coalbed methane drilling from happening in BC’s Sacred Headwaters. The volume of calls was so high that the person at the other end of the phone in the Premier’s office was ‘getting a kink in her neck’, and Shell began directing calls to a ‘customer service’ answering machine.

A Victory!

One week later (Friday Dec 5th), Richard Neufeld, BC’s Minister of Energy and Mines announces in this news release that he is delaying all coalbed methane activity in the Sacred Headwaters. This is a huge victory for the Tahltan and the collaborative Sacred Headwaters campaign in BC! 

Well done to everyone who ever did anything to add their voice to this cause; but the victory in the Sacred Headwaters came with an especially bitter defeat.

The Defeat

Perhaps to limit the effect the Sacred Headwaters announcement might have on unconventional gas business certainty in BC, and perhaps as a personally satisfying backhand to those who continue to oppose his government’s enthusiasm for coalbed methane in BC, Neufeld announced at the same time that he was granting BP tenure for their massive Mist Mountain coalbed methane project in the East Kootenays. 

The people of Fernie who have been fighting the same fight, now need help.

Click here to read a media release with the response of Dogwood and several other groups to Neufeld’s announcement.

 What You Can Do Today

A street rally is being organized in Fernie, and in Princeton in support of Fernie, for this Wednesday. Emails, letters, phone calls, petitions; these are all great ways to participate in your democracy, but nothing beats the coming-together feeling of a good peaceful rally or march. You actually get to meet and speak with other people who think the same way. 

(1)    If you live in Fernie or Princeton, put your democracy shoes on and hit the streets. If you don’t live there, but know someone who does, let em’ know! Click here for details. 

(2)    Coalbed methane drilling might not be happening in downtown Vancouver or Victoria, but this is an issue that affects the entire province. Show solidarity by calling Global TV and CBC to request that cameras cover Wednesday’s events in Fernie and Princeton. Click here for numbers.


satisfACTION Blog

The satisfACTION sub-blog is about activism in British Columbia – themethods, theories, and stories of how people are working together formore perfect communities . Ever felt a need to change things, but don’tknow where to start?  I’ll showcase opportunities for personallysatisfying and meaningful actions. Read the intro to the blog here.

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