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Annual Parks Report Outlines Roadmap for Meeting Land and Freshwater Protection Targets in Alberta and Across Canada

EDMONTON – Today the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) released its annual Parks Report, What’s Next: Parks and Protected Areas to 2020 and Beyond, which recommends how governments in Canada – federal, provincial, territorial, and Indigenous – can work together to achieve our international commitment to protect at least 17% of our landscape by 2020. This would almost double our current protected areas and would be a step towards the longer-term work needed to reverse the catastrophic and ongoing decline in biodiversity. Canada has the biggest opportunity in a generation to protect nature – and this report provides a roadmap for action. Read more about Annual Parks Report Outlines Roadmap for Meeting Land and Freshwater Protection Targets in Alberta and Across Canada

Media Releases & Op-eds

Canada’s failure to protect Wood Buffalo National Park to be raised at UNESCO meeting

As UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee convenes this week for its annual meeting in Manama, Bahrain, Indigenous and environmental groups are calling on Canada to do more to protect its largest park, Wood Buffalo National Park.

Members of Mikisew Cree First Nation are in Bahrain to present to World Heritage Committee members. They will urge Canada to implement all seventeen of the Committee’s recommendations to ensure protection of Wood Buffalo National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Read more about Canada’s failure to protect Wood Buffalo National Park to be raised at UNESCO meeting

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Alberta Energy Regulator approves another deficient oilsands tailings plan

Pembina Institute reacts to approval of Syncrude’s Aurora North Mine tailings plan

EDMONTON — Jodi McNeill, technical and policy analyst at the Pembina Institute, made the following statement in response to the Alberta Energy Regulator’s (AER) latest tailings management plan approval:

“This is the fifth approved tailings management plan that doesn’t comply with the AER’s Directive 085. Syncrude’s plan relies on composite tailings (CT) and water capping to treat its tailings. The AER questions whether CT deposits can support final closure landscapes, and water capping is an unproven technology that is not authorized by the regulator. Read more about Alberta Energy Regulator approves another deficient oilsands tailings plan

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Strong methane regulations the quickest, easiest and most cost-effective way to protect our environment, say 16 Alberta organizations

Joint letter urges the alberta government to seize the economic and environmental opportunity available by enacting strong methane regulations to capture wasted natural gas

Edmonton, Alberta—16 community and environmental organizations from across Alberta are calling on the province to implement mandatory methane regulations to reduce climate pollution from the oil and gas sector, help meet the Province's emission reduction targets, capture valuable natural gas this is currently wasted and catch up to other leading energy-producing jurisdictions.  

A joint letter was submitted on March 9, 2018 to the Alberta government to inform the development of the Province's new methane regulations for the oil and gas sector. Read more about Strong methane regulations the quickest, easiest and most cost-effective way to protect our environment, say 16 Alberta organizations

Media Releases & Op-eds

Canada still failing Wood Buffalo National Park a year after UN report

FORT MCMURRAY, ALTA. — On the anniversary of Environment Minister Catherine McKenna characterizing an international report that concluded governments have failed to protect Wood Buffalo National Park as a “call to action”, a coalition of Indigenous and environmental groups is still waiting for that action. Read more about Canada still failing Wood Buffalo National Park a year after UN report

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Bighorn Regional Advisory Committee advice out of step with most Albertans

On Wednesday the province of Alberta released advice from the Regional Advisory Council (RAC) for the North Saskatchewan Regional Land Use Plan, including an area known as the Bighorn Backcountry.

“This is advice given to a previous government and does not reflect the outlook of most Albertans about the importance of parks, wildlife and water,” says Stephen Legault, program director at Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative. Read more about Bighorn Regional Advisory Committee advice out of step with most Albertans

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Public Risk For Oilsands Mines Clean-up Costs Must Be Removed

Albertans face unacceptable risks from unfunded oil sands mine clean-up costs. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) believes it is time for tar sands mine operators to pay full security for their clean-up obligations and remove this burden from the public.  Read more about Public Risk For Oilsands Mines Clean-up Costs Must Be Removed

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Hay River Basin Pollution Investigation – Report release event

Keepers of the Water is working to address concerns brought forward by Traditional Ecological Knowledge holders in Northern Alberta with our partners, Dene Tha First Nation, Beaver First Nation, North Peace Tribal Council and Treaty 8 First Nations of Alberta. 

At our Keepers IX Gathering in 2015, concerns were expressed about the clean-up of pipeline spills. Many thousands of spills have taken place in the Hay River Basin area; these have been spills of oil, diluent, produced water, and combinations of these. Local communities and Traditional Knowledge Holders are concerned about the clean up process after pipeline spills. While in some cases clean up has been certified as ‘complete’ by the Alberta Energy Regulator, ecological effects and residual contamination persist after remediation. Read more about Hay River Basin Pollution Investigation – Report release event

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Protected Areas over Paddocks for Alberta’s Endangered Caribou

On December 17, the Alberta government issued a request to build a fenced compound in the west central Little Smoky woodland caribou range, for captive female caribou to have calves. These calves will be released as yearlings into habitat that is becoming even more degraded by new energy-related disturbances and by logging. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) believes that the Alberta government must act swiftly on its promises to apply strict operating limits on new surface disturbance in caribou ranges, and to establish extensive northwest Alberta protected areas, instead of relying on artificial predator controls. Read more about Protected Areas over Paddocks for Alberta’s Endangered Caribou

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The Pembina Institute reacts to Alberta Government announcement on 30% renewables target

CALGARY — Sara Hastings-Simon, Clean Energy Program Director at the Pembina Institute, made the following statement in response to the Ministry of Environment and Parks announcement.

“Albertans will benefit from an increase in renewables on the grid. The experience from countless jurisdictions shows that when deployed wisely renewables can reduce power bills for consumers – serving as a price hedge and protecting consumers from volatile commodity prices. Renewables further reduce the need for costly transmission and distribution upgrades, and improve grid resiliency.”

Read more about The Pembina Institute reacts to Alberta Government announcement on 30% renewables target

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