Article gives distorted view of synergy movement
Re: “Anti-fracking activist rejects violence, threats as solution” (John Gleeson, March 20).
Your article provides an unfortunate distorted view of the synergy movement in Alberta. Synergy Alberta was indeed incorporated in 2006 as a multi-stakeholder not-for-profit society, although in fact the synergy movement and several of the individual groups started many years prior as an innovative partnership between communities, industry and the government to address a rising community discontent over industry activity.
Synergy groups serve as a conduit for respectful and credible information exchange and are not designed to produce “manufactured or implied consent.” Since synergy groups have no regulatory or decision-making role, participation in one does not in any way indicate one’s position, but rather assists in ensuring different viewpoints can be heard. One may be an active participant in synergy while still opposing a development, only in a more informed manner.
Of course, there are those who would prefer only their viewpoint is heard and therefore choose not to engage in synergistic processes. Whether that perspective is from an industry player or an anti-industry advocate, such an approach is not helpful to communities directly affected by the pressures and opportunities of energy development.