The Hants Journal sat down with Hants West provincial candidates Chuck Porter (incumbent Progressive Conservative MLA), Liberal Claude O’Hara, New Democrat Brian Stephens and Green Party of Nova Scotia candidate, Torin Buzek. We asked them a series of questions relating to local and provincial issues. We also spoke with Progressive Conservative leader Jamie Baillie, who accompanied Porter to the interview, and Liberal leader Stephen McNeil, who accompanied O’Hara. Current NDP premier of the province, Darrell Dexter, was unavailable to meet with the Journal as of press time. We asked each candidate the following question: What is your stance on fracking? Here is a condensed version of what the Progressive Conservatives had to say.
Progressive Conservative leader Jamie Baillie:
I can’t imagine approving any project that would put our groundwater at risk. As a new government, we support the timeout on fracking that’s in place now and would insist on seeing the science that proves it’s safe before going any further — and it isn’t there now and that’s why I don’t expect that we’re going to see any projects for awhile yet because… projects that are going to put our groundwater at risk are not going to go forward.
Hants West PC incumbent MLA Chuck Porter:
That would be the same for me — not a chance. Do not support it, whatsoever, without that technology being developed that would show that it was safe, and as Jamie said, it’s not there.
I’ve had a number of questions on it… in the last few days. I see some of the signs up around, but we’ve been very clear on that message from day one that that is our stance and, you know, with all that technology that there is out there there’s probably another way. Maybe it costs more to do, I don’t know, but they’re going to have to continue to do some research on that stuff before we would support such things.