New Brunswick

New Brunswick has a long history of crude oil and natural gas production.

Quick facts

  • 7.5 million - cubic feet/day in natural gas production in 2016
  • 32 - the total number of natural gas wells producing
  • 78 - is the total estimated natural gas resource from shale measured in trillion cubic feet
  • 302 - the total number of oil and natural gas wells drilled in the province
  • 121,379 - the total number hectares leased
  • 32 - licences to search over 1 million hectares

New Brunswick's resources

New Brunswick's oil and natural gas industry dates back to 1859 with the discovery of the Dover natural gas field located near Moncton. In 1909, the first successful natural gas well began production in Stoney Creek. Since 1990, 82 oil and natural gas wells have been drilled in the province.

Natural gas production in 2016 averaged about 7.5 million cubic feet per day. New Brunswick is home to the Frederick Brook Shale, which roughly stretches across the southeastern part of the province and is part of the Maritimes Basin. The government estimates that there are 78 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of technically recoverable natural gas and 2.1 million barrels of oil.

In December 2014, the Government of New Brunswick introduced a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in the province and indicated that five conditions must be met in order for the moratorium to be lifted:

  • A social license must be in place
  • Clear and credible information about the impacts of hydraulic fracturing on health, environment and water, must be in place in order to develop country-leading regulatory regime with sufficient enforcement capabilities
  • A plan must be developed that mitigates the impacts on public infrastructure and that addresses issues such as waste water disposal
  • A process must be developed related to respecting obligations related to the duty to consult with First Nations
  • A mechanism must be in place to ensure that benefits are maximized for New Brunswickers, including the development of a proper royalty structure