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Road upgrades funneled towards oil and gas communities

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. -- The B.C. government is investing $36 million in road upgrades in the North Peace and Norther...


FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The B.C. government is investing $36 million in road upgrades in the North Peace and Northern Rockies regions to ensure access to the area, increase oil and gas revenues, and improve safety for communities.

“The upgrades to the roads announced today will ensure that all residents in the northeast and in the rest of the province benefit from the oil and gas industry through the increased revenues the industry provides to government,” said Richard Neufeld, Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

Oil and gas exploration and production are now the largest single natural-resource generator of direct revenue for the province. In 2005, revenue from oil and gas financed more than $2.5 billion worth of government’s priority activities, including health and education programs for all British Columbians.

Improved roads are an effort to allow oil and gas companies to spread their activity over the entire year, creating year-round jobs for workers and opportunities for service providers, as well as lessening industry impact on the environment.

“Good, safe, reliable roads are vital to further economic growth in the North Peace and Northern Rockies regions,” said Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon. “That’s why we have committed this funding as part of our three-year, $2.3-billion provincial transportation plan to ensure our transportation infrastructure keeps pace with the thriving economy.”

This recent $36 million funding includes $4 million announced in June for the Upper Halfway Road.

The province’s total investments in public roads for the North Peace and Northern Rockies regions is about $186 million, and the total for the entire northeast since 2001 to $366 million.


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