Workshop Meeting Summary - 24 January 2011

Arctic Offshore Drilling Review

Workshop Meeting Summary

Date and Location
Date Location
Monday
24 January 2011
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Youth Centre
Tuktoyaktuk, NT

Purpose: Arctic Offshore Drilling Review workshop meeting with the Tuktoyaktuk Hunters & Trappers Committee and the Community Corporation Members

Participants
Participants
Charles Gruben
John Stuart Jr.
Sandy Adam
Eddie Dillon
Billy Storr
Douglas Esagok
Steve Baryluk
 
Gaétan Caron Chair and Chief Executive Officer, NEB
David Hamilton Member, NEB
Brian Chambers Northern Advisor, NEB
Bharat Dixit Technical Leader, Conservation of Resources, NEB
Pamela Romanchuk Environmental Specialist, NEB
Susan Gudgeon Northern Coordinator, Arctic Offshore Drilling Review, NEB

Introductory Remarks (NEB):

  • An overview of the Arctic Offshore Drilling Review was provided, including the mandate of the NEB, the events leading up to the Review and the various phases of the Review.
  • The HTC and CC members were asked what can you tell us about your community, land and environment that offshore drilling may affect?

Dialogue with HTC and CC members:

In response to the question put forward, a number of areas of interest and concern were raised by HTC and CC members, including:

  1. Emergency Response and Preparedness:

    • There is no proven method of treating oil in ice
    • How will the oil be recovered?
    • How long would a response team take?
    • The equipment and technology is the same as was used in the Gulf
    • Don't have a fraction of resources that they had in the Gulf - how will it work?

  2. General:

    • How can it be made safe for the environment?
    • There would be great impacts to the animals and communities
    • If anything goes wrong it would take three years to correct it.
    • What do companies do with their waste?
    • Using fresh water with muds - were approved to dump it overboard - impacts whales and other animals
    • Man-made islands still exist (Esso)
    • Are all the drilling regulations the same throughout the world?
    • Have the regulations been looked at for up here?
    • How do we know things won't go wrong?
    • All drilling has been in shallow water - deep water drilling has never been tried before
    • There are so many unknowns
    • Is the technology there?
    • There are lots of questions to be answered?
    • Don't know yet what industry will say
    • There is no comfort for the communities right now
    • Anything that will protect the environment is useful/helpful
    • There is a resource out there and companies are going to chase it
    • Not saying we are against development but do it safely and do things the right way
    • Are security deposits required when an application is approved?
    • Is there enough money to make sure things are covered?
    • People are not aware or do not realize the big picture

  3. Unique Arctic Environment:

    • Best drilling conditions in the Gulf and still there was an accident - what would happen here with the harsh weather, ice and cold conditions?
    • Has there been drilling in ice conditions in the North Sea? Has this ever been done or tested before?

  4. Value of Resources:

    • After man-made islands, had to go further to hunt polar bears - ice won't break up and bears look for broken ice
    • Whaling season is two weeks behind (Shingle Point)
    • We live here and it's our livelihood (food chain)
    • Traditional knowledge is very important - know what is changing and what conditions are from being on the land for so many years

Concluding Remarks and Follow-up Matters:

  • NEB is available to assist HTC/CC members with the process to prepare for Phase 2 of the Review and be comfortable to come to the table - NEB will follow-up in organizing how best to assist members with the process
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