|Authors:||Duncan Kenyon, Nikki Way, Andrew Read, Barend Dronkers, Benjamin Israel, Binnu Jeyakumar, Nina Lothian|
|Publish Date:||October 2016|
|PDF Download:||[Landowners' Guide] [Landowners' Primer]|
|Pipelines and Other Infrastructure|
|Abandonment and Reclamation|
|Compensation, Rights, and Hearings|
Alberta Energy Regulator
Other Alberta Departments
Energy Industry Associations
Provincial Non-profit Organizations
Surface Rights and Local Groups
Responsible Energy Development Act
AER Oil and Gas Related Legislation
AER Energy Related Legislation
Other Provincial Acts
Glossary of Terms
The Alberta Environmental Network (AEN) is an affiliation of environmental non-profit, non-governmental organizations and individuals working toward a healthier environment in Alberta. The AEN aims to build the capacity of its members by providing resources, information and networking opportunities, and maintains a directory of members on its website.
One of the main activities of the AEN is to facilitate the participation of environmental non-governmental organizations in environmental engagements, such as on committees or in discussions with the AER or the Clean Air Strategic Alliance (see Clean Air Strategic Alliance).
The Environmental Law Centre (ELC) is a leading environmental public policy and law reform charity that provides objective information and advice on environmental legislation and regulations. The centre carries out its work through public programs, contract services, and search services. The search services, described below, are useful if you are working on a project that involves a purchase, sale, financing or development of land or a sale or financing of a business with potential environmental concerns; or if you are seeking information on reclamation certificates or environmental site assessments on private lands.
The Centre’s Environmental Enforcement Historical Search Service will provide a search of Alberta Environment and Parks database for the history of enforcement actions, including fines, warnings, orders or prosecutions under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act and other legislation. There is a fee of $75 for a search and the request can be done securely with a credit card payment online or by mail with a cheque. Full details are provided on the ELC website.
The Environmental Site Assessment Repository Search does searches for information relating to reclamation certificates applied for or issued on private land. This information will show whether reclamation certificates have been applied for, issued or cancelled for well sites, oil production sites, pipelines or compressor sites, but does not include exploration sites or oilsands mines. The search will also show if any environmental protection orders, enforcement orders or reclamation orders have been issued. The information is available for private land, but not for public lands, except for Special Areas Board land and Métis Settlements. A search can be done on a company name or on the legal land description (quarter section). The fee is $100 plus GST per search and requests must be made in writing.
The ELC has published many useful books and reports relating to environmental issues in Alberta which are available on the website under Reports and Publications. Some examples are:
Buyer Beware: Where and how to find environmental information about a property in Alberta (2015). This short helpful resource outlines where you can look for environmental information when you are buying property in Alberta.
What Lies Beneath? Access to Environmental Information in Alberta (2014). This comprehensive guidebook is intended to help anyone obtain environmental information about a specific property or location. This location-based approach is focused on the real estate buyer but can also be helpful for community groups, environmental organizations and the general public.
Get the Real Dirt: Contaminated Real Estate and the Law in Alberta (2000). Anyone buying, selling or leasing property in Alberta, along with their advisors, may face the possibility of liability for contaminated property. This book assists these parties in becoming more familiar with environmental concerns related to real estate transactions. It also suggests steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of environmental liability.
The Alberta Native Plant Council promotes knowledge and conservation of the native plants and vegetation in Alberta. The council can provide information to those wanting land to be reclaimed using native plants.
Action Surface Rights is an Alberta-based group that is dedicated to helping fellow landowners understand and navigate the maze of government and industry processes when dealing with the energy sectors, whether it be oil/ gas, transmission lines, or wind power. They provide resources, support and information for landowners to help them make an informed decision when dealing with the energy development.
The Clean Air Strategic Alliance (CASA) is a multi-stakeholder partnership of industry, government and non-government organizations that assists the Government of Alberta in developing strategic policy on many air quality issues. CASA deals with environmental, economic and health issues. While there are representatives from various government departments on the CASA board and in various CASA teams (including individuals from the departments of energy, environment, health and wellness and sustainable resource development), CASA reaches decisions through a consensus process.
One of its key roles is to prioritize air quality problems and, through its project teamwork, develop effective action plans to resolve these concerns.
Recognizing that air quality issues are often best dealt with on a regional basis, several regional airshed monitoring bodies have been endorsed under the CASA umbrella, using approved airshed zone guidelines. As with CASA, these multi-stakeholder bodies make decisions by consensus and consist of representatives from government, industry and non-governmental organizations. The CASA website has a map showing the location of the airsheds and has links to each one, although they operate as independent bodies (see below). These airshed groups do not provide comprehensive coverage of the province, but are active in many areas with more intensive oil and gas activity.
In 2006, the Alberta Airsheds Council (AAC) was formed to coordinate the efforts and operations of Alberta’s airsheds. It is a council of the nine airsheds currently in Alberta, and is a place where airshed zones could discuss common issues.
You can visit the Alberta Environment and Parks website for more information about Alberta’s airsheds, or you can find the contact infomation for them individually below.
|Fort Air Partnership||Parkland Airshed Management Zone|
Fort Saskatchewan and region
|Red Deer, Rocky Mountain House, Sundre, Banff and surrounding region|
|Phone: 1-800-718-0471||Phone: 403-862-7046|
|Palliser Airshed Society||Peace Airshed Zone Association|
|Medicine Hat and Redcliffe||Grande Prairie and region|
|Phone: 403-892-7745||Phone: 1-866-764-2681|
West Central Airshed Society
|Wood Buffalo Environmental Association|
Jasper, Hinton, Edson, Lake Wabamun, Drayton Valley, Pigeon Lake and surrounding regions
|Fort McMurray and the Wood Buffalo region|
|Phone: 780-514-3533||Phone: 780-799-4420|
Alberta Capital Airshed (ACA)
|Calgary Region Airshed Zone (CRAZ)|
|Edmonton region||Calgary region|
|Phone: 587-520-7935||Phone: 403-268-5737|
The Freehold Owners Association is an organization for those who own subsurface rights. It was set up in an attempt to level the playing field between freeholders and the oil and gas companies that lease their oil and gas interests.
The coalition reviews regulatory processes relating to air emissions and makes recommendations for improvement. It also promotes alternative energy sources and the use of the best available technology.
The Alberta Trappers’ Compensation Program is administered by the Alberta Trappers’ Association to help trappers when they are negatively affected by the activities of other resource users on Crown lands. The Trapper Compensation Board has been appointed to review claims that cannot be resolved through direct negotiations. This may be useful for those who have trapping leases near oil and gas development in the area.
Alberta Land Institute (ALI) is an independent, non-partisan research institute based at the University of Alberta that connects research and policy for better land management. ALI conducts and funds interdisciplinary academic research on land use challenges in Alberta and Canada to develop and evaluate alternative policy options that consider social, economic and environmental perspectives.
ALI has also published a guide and accompanying website to property rights in Alberta, outlining the basics of property and subsurface rights, which may be useful to read.
Grassroots Alberta Landowners Association was established to advance the interests of landowners by working to ensure that legislators, members of the media, and the general public come to a better understanding of the impact that industrial development has upon the lives and operations of farmers and ranchers. Grassroots Alberta is available to work with groups of landowners when their property is affected by pipeline and powerline projects.