Integrated Resource Management System
- World-leading environmental monitoring;
- Regional plans under Alberta’s Land-use Framework;
- The creation of a property rights advocate; and
- A single regulator for oil and gas development.
A Single Energy Regulator
Alberta is unique. Our approach to regulating resources must fit our specific needs. We’re moving to a new regulatory system for coal, oil sands and oil and gas that will maintain Alberta’s strong commitment to environmental management and public safety while ensuring responsible resource development.
These changes will also greatly improve efficiency by eliminating duplication and encouraging greater engagement with Albertans and stakeholders on policy development.
A world-class environmental monitoring system is the foundation of our integrated resource management framework. We are building a comprehensive environmental monitoring system that is:
- Integrated across air, water, land and biodiversity;
- Accessible and transparent; and
- Under scientific oversight.
We have already taken significant strides, including:
- Implementing a legally binding Land-use plan for the Lower Athabasca Region that sets limits and triggers for the environment;
- Launching the oil sands information portal to provide access to all current monitoring data;
- Initiating a joint monitoring program in the oil sands region with the federal government that has allowed us to add new water quality sites on the Athabasca River and Muskeg River systems;
- Increasing ambient air monitoring by adding more sampling sites; and
- Improving biodiversity monitoring to include all oil sands producing areas.
Alberta is developing seven long-term Land-use plans based on the province’s major watersheds under our Land-use Framework. Land-use plans are about the priorities that Albertans value and share—economic growth that brings good jobs, vibrant communities, and a clean and healthy environment.
Lower Athabasca Regional Plan
Alberta’s first regional Land-use plan is in the oil sands region. It sets strong environmental limits, conserves sensitive lands, provides certainty to industry, diversifies the economy, and offers numerous recreational opportunities in the Lower Athabasca Region.
By setting firm limits for air, land and water, we can ensure that we’re protecting our environment while still allowing for sustainable growth—something Alberta is always striving for.
South Saskatchewan Regional Plan
A second regional plan is currently under development for southern Alberta. The Alberta government is doing extensive consultations with Albertans to see what their priorities are and what they’d like to see in the region. Work on a Land-use plan for southern Alberta will focus on water, economic development and conservation needs.
As government makes long-term development decisions, we must be certain that Albertans feel that their property rights are respected. We must strive to find a fair balance between respecting and upholding the individual rights of Albertans and the need for developments that will benefit the public as a whole.
With this in mind, government continues to make property rights a priority. We are establishing a Property Rights Advocate Office to work closely with landowners, industry and expropriating authorities on property rights issues and in supporting landowners.