Jessica Ernst is a 58 year-old Canadian scientist with over 25 years experience working in the petroleum industry and lives rurally near Rosebud, Alberta. Jessica is suing Encana for illegally fracturing and contaminating her community’s fresh water aquifers, and the Alberta government and Energy Regulator for failing “to follow the investigation and enforcement processes that they had established and publicized.” She filed her lawsuit in 2007, and has a 2016 hearing before the Supreme Court of Canada to appeal her case against the Energy Regulator after Alberta courts granted them legal immunity for violating her constitutional rights, and falsely labeling her a terrorist. If she wins at the Supreme Court, she will be sent back to the same Alberta courts to try again, nine years into her lawsuit.
Jessica’s case against Encana and the Alberta government proceed regardless.
Jessica Ernst was awarded the UNANIMA International Woman of Courage Award (2011). UNAMIMA International offers this award to a woman who embodies those qualities which they believe is essential for the advancement of women everywhere – solidarity, a passion for human rights, commitment, and courage in the face of power which threatens life.
Jessica dedicates this interview to Mr. George Bender, Australia farmer, and his loved ones.
For more information:
- Ernst lawsuit
- Andrew Nikiforuk’s Slick Water, published by Greystone Books, available at amazon.ca and in libraries
- Slick Water review by Quill & Quire and desmogcanada
(Jessica Ernst visiting Ashdown Forest, home of Winnie the Pooh, after her 2013 UK speaking tour. Photo by Vanessa Vine.)