Shoal Point to lose drilling licence near Newfoundlands Gros Morne park

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — An oil exploration company that set off intense debate with plans to frack near Gros Morne National Park in western Newfoundland says it will lose its licence next month to drill wells near the UNESCO world heritage site.CEO Mark Jarvis of Shoal Point Energy Ltd. said his company’s bid to extend one of three exploration licences it holds in the province was rejected Dec. 5 by the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board.The company said the decision means his company will lose the licence as of Jan. 15 as well as a $1-million deposit made last January for a one-year extension on drilling exploration wells.“We are disappointed by this decision,” Jarvis said in a statement Thursday.Shoal Point Energy and Black Spruce Exploration, a subsidiary of Foothills Capital Corp., had proposed to hunt for oil in shale rock layers in enclaves surrounded by the park using hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.The process involves pumping water, nitrogen, sand and chemical additives at high pressure to fracture shale rock formations and allow gas or oil to flow through well bores to the surface.The prospect of drilling in the Green Point shale near the picturesque park raised alarms about groundwater pollution and other risks.Last month, the provincial government shut the door on applications for hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas while it reviews regulations and consults residents.In a statement issued Friday the offshore board said it considered and rejected three separate proposals from the company for a one-year extension to its exploration licence.The board said in making its decision it considered that the licence was issued based on conventional exploration work and that eight years had passed with minimal exploration undertaken.It said the company’s proposal did not identify a plan to proceed with the drilling obligation on the licence and instead identified “a physical and legal impossibility to undertake a drilling program” in the only format now under consideration.The board also said the company did not incorporate a forfeiture of its drilling deposit for not meeting the obligations of the licence to date.Shoal Point Energy said it was willing to give up more than half of the approximately 202 hectares covered by the licence if the board approved the extension, including the portion neighbouring Gros Morne.The company said it was also prepared to make an additional drilling deposit of $250,000, but the board denied both requests.Jarvis said the Vancouver-based company felt its application respected the importance of the park.“Our proposal balanced a desire to protect this unique and beautiful park with a desire to safely and responsibly develop a much-needed economic opportunity on the west coast of Newfoundland,” he said.In total, the company’s three licences cover approximately 291 hectares in western Newfoundland.“We still have a very large prospective resource to explore and develop in our remaining exploration licences,” said Jarvis. “We believe that the majority of people in this area want economic opportunity, as long as they are satisfied that operations are safe and respect the environment.”Canadian Press read more

Photographer loses battle with Wikipedia over this amazing monkey selfie

first_imgWHEN A MACAQUE monkey presses the shutter button on a camera, and the result is the most phenomenal selfie you’re ever likely to see – who owns the rights to it?This is the question at the heart of an ongoing dispute between British photographer David Slater and Wikipedia, which took a turn today when the Wikimedia Foundation issued its latest Transparency Report. A photographer left his camera unattended in a national park in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Source: David Slater/Wikimedia CommonsWikimedia Commons is where users and content-producers upload photos and other media which is not governed by copyright, or whose copyright has expired.Slater had argued that, while it was the monkey that physically took the snapshots, he set it up, the camera was his, and therefore he owned the copyright on them.The photographer summed up Wikipedia’s argument as being, “If the monkey took it, it owns copyright, not me,” and the story has been widely reported as an assertion by Wikipedia that the macaque monkey is the sole copyright holder.However, Wikipedia’s stated rationale for refusing to delete the images is that no one has copyright over them, because no human being took them. We didn’t agree, so we denied the request. The pictures were featured in an online newspaper article and eventually posted to Commons. We received a takedown request from the photographer, claiming that he owned the copyright to the photographs. A female crested black macaque monkey got a hold of the camera and took a series of pictures, including some self-portraits. Whatever your own view is, we could be set for an intriguing legal fight, with Slater telling the Daily Telegraph that it’s not up to Wikipedia alone to decide who owns copyright on what. “It needs a court to decide that,” he said.One of the images has already been nominated for deletion from Wikipedia since their ruling today, on the following grounds:Monkeys with machines? It starts like this……it goes on to this…And it ends like this…Read: Google starts removing search results under ‘right to be forgotten’ ruling>This Cork village has the best Wikipedia entry in Ireland>last_img read more