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Photo: Preston Manning discusses conflict resolution with participants at the Energy Conference on Thursday afternoon- Christine Rumleskie/

Preston Manning was in Dawson Creek on Thursday afternoon, to discuss relations between the public and oil and gas corporations.

The event was sponsored by EnCana Corp., whose pipelines have been attacked six times in the northeast, by an anonymous bomber.

Manning talked to a crowd of over 150 people. The event was open to all members of the public, and included a question and answer period after his speech.

The former leader of the Reform Party of Canada said larger corporations should be looking for moderators to deal with both parties when conflicts arise. The moderators should have knowledge of what the companies are all about, and what the concerned residents want.

Manning says both residents and companies should avoid solving problems via lawyers and court systems, because that only creates a ‘toxic’ environment once the dust settles.

He used the example of a pressurized oil and gas well.

He says when a pipeline is experiencing high pressure, companies slowly depress the line. This is what he says should be done in conflict situations. He says the conflict should be slowly diffused, rather than waiting until the ‘pipeline blows up.’

Below watch Preston Manning’s speech at the NEBC Energy Conference

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