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Alberta government signs oilsands environmental monitoring agreement

The Government of Alberta has agreed to continue their environmental monitoring of the Alberta oilsands.

Canada’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna and Alberta’s Minister of Environment and Parks Shannon Phillips signed a joint agreement Thursday that outlines both governments’ commitments and responsibilities when it comes to environmental monitoring in the area. The focus will be on the impact oil sands development has on air and water quality, wildlife health and biodiversity, and land disturbance.

The agreement also seeks to have Indigenous communities be a bigger part of monitoring processes and priorities, with more data, information and funding being made available to assist community-based monitoring. Phillips says that Indigenous people are “vital partners” in managing Alberta’s economy, and this agreement demonstrates the government’s commitment to reconciliation.

The implementation plan will be funded mostly by the oil and gas industry up to $50 million annually. The new agreement is set to go into effect early next year.

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