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A Matter of TRUST: THE ROLE OF COMMUNITIES IN ENERGY DECISION-MAKING [University of Ottawa]

Publisher: 
University of Ottawa
Year of publication: 
2016

There is a historical context of expropriation both
recent (Kouchibigouac National Park in the 1950s)
and further back (Acadian expulsion in 1700s) that
makes residents skeptical and cautious of shale gas
exploration activities. One-tenth of the Kent County
population is Indigenous. The Mi’gmaq never ceded
territory but rather signed a “Peace and Friendship
Treaty” with the British Crown, with responsibilities
on either side for protection (INAC, undated). The
symbolic, strategic and legal importance of this fact
to resisting fracking development is important not
only to the Elsipogtog community, but also to other
non-Indigenous voices in Kent County, who forged
new relationships during the blockades and protests
of 2013. Violent clashes with RCMP in October
2013 to evict Mi’gmaq protestors feature strongly in
Kent County resident descriptions of fracking issues.
Politically, the region tends to vote Liberal, and that
is the governing party that instituted a moratorium
on fracking. Another unique feature of Kent County
is that two-thirds of residents live outside of
incorporated municipalities, and have no elected
municipal representation.



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