Call for Members: CASA Air Quality Management Symposium Working Group

Position: 
ENGO Members (2)
Initiative: 
Air Quality Management Symposium—CAAQS in Alberta
Application Deadline: 
21 Jan 2020
Background: 

Canadian Ambient Air Quality Standards (CAAQS) are the driver for air quality management across Canada. To date, CAAQS have been developed for sulphur dioxide (SO2), fine particulate matter (PM2.5), and ozone (O3) and NO2. Industry associations, non-governmental organizations, and Indigenous organizations participate in the development and review of CAAQS. CAAQS are reviewed every five years to ensure they are stringent enough to protect human health and the environment. The CAAQS for ozone are currently under review.

The Government of Alberta is committed to meeting the CAAQS as part of the commitment to the national Air Quality Management System (AQMS). These criteria air contaminants need to be monitored and managed for Alberta to achieve the CAAQS.

Careful management of CAAQS pollutant emissions will be required as forecasts indicate that Alberta air zones will likely reach the orange CAAQS level for NO2 in 2021. Dialogue and ideas are needed from a wide array of involved groups to inform policy options for managing air quality.

The Government of Alberta (GoA), led by Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) and the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER), has identified an urgent need to bring a variety of perspectives together and capture innovative policy and regulatory solutions. For these reasons, AEP sees an opportunity to collaborate with the Clean Air Strategic Alliance (CASA) to inform and engage with stakeholders by organizing and facilitating a symposium/workshop to:

  • Bring together a diverse set of stakeholders and share awareness on the urgency and implications of Alberta failing to achieve national CAAQS and associated regional Air Quality Management Framework (AQMF) triggers.
  • Garner diverse perspectives in a transparent setting on solutions for emissions reductions from a range of regulated and non-regulated sectors.
  • Engage in respectful dialogue with stakeholders to find common ground/interests on taking action to improve air quality, meet CAAQS and AQMF triggers while supporting Alberta’s economic prosperity.
  • Inform current policies and identify opportunities to improve on those policies while not generating unnecessary regulatory red tape.

The project is a great opportunity for CASA members and other interested groups; the organization has a unique ability to bring together diverse perspectives and stakeholders to find common ground on complex air quality management issues. CASA is a neutral facilitator and forum in which this type of multi-sectoral work can be done.

CASA recently approved a Statement of Opportunity and is calling for members to participate in a working group to scope a project and draft a project charter for a committee to plan, execute, and report on a symposium that will strive to:

  • Build a common understanding among diverse stakeholders about current and future air quality issues Alberta is facing relative to CAAQS.
  • Brainstorm possible solutions and innovative approaches for Alberta to reduce emissions impacting the state of air quality, informed by diverse stakeholders needs.
  • Select criteria for assessing and ranking solutions government could pursue.
  • Develop awareness among stakeholders of how air quality and potential solutions may impact stakeholders from an environmental, economic, and social perspective.
  • Develop a feedback loop with stakeholders on how their input and work has been used.

The resulting deliverable would likely be a symposium proceedings/a lessons learned document.

Time Commitment: 

The Working Group is expected to convene two to three full-day meetings over approximately four months. Members should also expect to spend additional hours between meetings to review materials.

Expenses & Honoraria: 

Honoraria and reimbursement of travel expenses are available in accordance with CASA’s Policy on Stakeholder Support.

Selection Criteria: 

The representative should have the following attributes:

  • Knowledge and expertise in air quality management—familiarity and experience with the national AQMS and CAAQS is an asset;
  • Record of effective participation in CASA Project Teams, or other consensus-based multi-stakeholder processes;
  • Support and endorsement of a non-governmental organization active in Alberta with a demonstrated commitment to the environmental stewardship and promotion of air quality improvement.

Delegate Expectations

  • Come prepared for meetings, (i.e., read pre-meeting material, complete homework assignments, and be able to negotiate on behalf of their sector).
  • Make constructive contributions that advance the working group’s goals and objectives and help others to do the same.
  • Report regularly to the NGO sector providing updates and soliciting feedback on the working group’s progress by participating in AEN conference calls & meetings, and providing periodic written briefs.
  • Brief NGO sector Directors and Alternates regularly, including prior to the team’s final documents that are presented to the Board.
  • Liaise with NGO sector participants on the Board and other CASA teams to maximize synergy, ensure coordination, and prevent duplication.
  • Follow the rules and principles of consensus decision-making.

The selected delegates are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the AEN Code of Ethics & Conduct.

Application Instructions: 

Please reply to [email protected] by Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at 5:00 PM MDT providing:

  • Contact information of applicant (including address, email, and phone number);
  • The name of the environmental non-governmental organization endorsing the applicant;
  • A brief description of the applicant’s background and abilities, particularly those relevant to the selection criteria.

Final selection will take place on the January conference call of the AEN Clean Air Caucus.