Friday, July 26, 2013

MLA Rice questions Minister on health and infrastructure issues related to LNG development

Jennifer Rice raised more questions on the theme of LNG development on Wednesday at the Legislature, as the North Coast NDP MLA made a string of inquiries of the Minister of Health, Dr. Terry Lake.

Speaking on wide range of topics, mainly on matters of health concerns for the North Coast and with it, questions on whether an assessment had been conducted by the government on the nature of physical and social health impacts on residents of the Northwest regarding the prospect of multiple LNG plants and other industrial activity for the region.

While I recognize that this assessment was started before the government began promoting LNG in earnest, I was wondering if thoughts have been given to a similar assessment on how multiple LNG plants, as well as other expanded industrial activity, would affect the physical and the social health of the residents of northwest British Columbia. ...  I've had many people concerned about just the impacts of increasing industrial development in the northwest, particularly in Prince Rupert and Kitimat. I'm curious to know…. Do you think there might be a community outreach or similar outreach to that done in the northeast on the concerns of residents? Or would that fall under the Ministry of Environment, under environmental assessment? -- MLA Rice, at the Legislature on Wednesday

The MLA also touched on an issue close to the heart of her previous colleagues at Prince Rupert City Hall, seeking further information regarding the pressures of industrial development on local health systems and infrastructures. As we've outlined on the blog in the past, the growing file of Industrial issues is weighing heavily on the minds of Prince Rupert City Council, a theme that the MLA brough to the Legislature on Wednesday

Again, similarly, looking at the pressures from industrial development in the northwest, I'm curious to know if there will be any study or analysis done on the pressures on the health system, specifically — on hospitals, on health care providers — because of the influx of people. For example, in Prince Rupert, they're looking at building a camp for 3,000 people. I know, as a former city councillor, that the city is struggling to deal with current infrastructure issues as it is, let alone having an influx of that kind of population. -- MLA Rice, Wednesday at the legislature, speaking on issues of infrastructure challenges from increased industrial development

Her LNG commentary, was part of a larger overview of questioning during the Wednesday session, where the North Coast MLA inquired on a number of matters on health care, Pharma Care issues and First Nations health concerns across the riding.

You can review her entire presentation and the responses from the Minister, all of which takes place from 3:35PM until 4:15PM of the Wednesday afternoon session, the minutes of the Legislature session can be found here.  (scroll down to 1525 on the right hand side)

The Video archive of the various exchanges can be accessed from the House Video archives

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