Oct 29, 2019
An article in the Calgary Herald looks at the Fort McKay First Nation’s responses to the Moose Lake Area Management Plan and the Rigel oilsands project. The First Nation has asked the Alberta government to move ahead with the Moose Lake Area Management Plan, which, according to the article, “would set down rules on what can happen within the area.”
Author Chris Varcoe also states that the Fort McKay First Nation is headed to the Alberta Court of Appeal to argue against the Alberta Energy Regulator’s approval of the Rigel oilsands project. According to the article, the development by Prosper Petroleum was approved in June 2018 by the AER while the previous government was continuing ongoing discussions with the First Nation about the Moose Lake Area Management Plan, but it has yet to be approved by the province. The project is expected to cost about $390 million to build, according to news reports, and to produce 10,000 barrels per day.
Sander Duncanson, a partner in Osler’s Regulatory, Environmental, Aboriginal and Land Group, and who is representing Prosper, says that the management plan has been under development for more than a decade and “we don’t know when that plan is going to be in place; we don’t know what the plan is going to say.”
Sander also comments on the broader question of the oilsands development, stating, “[t]he AER concluded that the project can be carried out safely. And the AER found that the project is in the public interest of Alberta.”
For more information, read Chris Varcoe’s full article, “Varcoe: Fort McKay First Nation calls for UCP to approve Moose Lake plan,” in the Calgary Herald.