Alberta SRP Periods 7 & 8 Details Announced
Grant period 7: Application period 7 is scheduled to start in the second half of July 2021 and remain open until March 31, 2022. In order to give licensees time to plan their projects, the following overview is being provided in advance.$100 million in funding will be available for post-abandonment closure work on two categories of sites: those abandoned prior to April 30, 2017, and nominated sites with abandoned wells, facilities or pipelines abandoned prior to April 30, 2017:
- Licensees with eligible abandoned sites – those with an “abandoned” license status on or before April 30, 2017 – will be allocated SRP grant funding amounts for period 7.
- Eligible nominated sites are those that were received by the SRP on or before May 6, 2021 through the Landowner and Indigenous Community Site Nomination process (see the Site Rehabilitation Program Guidelines (PDF, 903 KB), page 21 and 22, for details).
- Eligible nominated sites must also have an “abandoned” license status on or before April 30, 2017.
- A map of the eligible nominated sites will be available prior to the start of period 7.
- Allocations for each licensee will be determined by calculating their proportion of abandoned eligible wells from the total of all wells abandoned on or before April 30, 2017.
- Government will contact licensees to communicate their allocation amount prior to the launch of the period 7.
- The final list of eligible licensees and their allocations will be posted on this webpage on the launch date of the period 7.
Additional period 7 details
Oil field service contractors can contract with licensees to do post-abandonment closure activities and apply for an SRP grant to get funding to do the work; licensees cannot apply for this funding – only the contractor doing the work can do so.
- Eligible post-abandonment closure work includes phase 1 and 2 environmental site assessments, remediation, and reclamation work activities.
- Projects are eligible for up to 50% grant funding – the licensee or WIP is responsible for paying the remaining amount.
- Grant funding will be increased up to 100% of the project value if the application is for work at an eligible nominated site(s).
- Nominated sites that are not eligible for period 7, because the sites do not have an abandoned well status on or before April 30, 2017, or because they were received after May 6, 2021, will remain eligible for grant funding in other open funding periods, as long as the eligibility criteria are met for the funding period under which the application is made.
Period 8: Application period 8 is targeted to start in the second half of July 2021 and remain open until March 31, 2022. In order to give licensees time to plan their projects, the following overview is being provided in advance.
$100 million in funding will be available for closure work in Sage Grouse, native trout and caribou Species at Risk in specific geographic areas that will be identified on maps prior to the start of period 8.
- The identified geographic areas are of significant habitat for three priority Species at Risk within Alberta: priority caribou ranges (mountain and woodland: A La Peche, Bistcho, Chinchaga, Cold Lake, Little Smoky, Narraway, and Redrock-Prairie Creek ), Sage Grouse, and Alberta’s native trout (in the Eastern Slopes and foothills regions, including Athabasca rainbow, bull, and westslope cutthroat trout).
- One-third of the $100 million in funding will be allocated to each of the three Species at Risk (Sage Grouse, native trout and caribou). Licensees with eligible sites in the identified geographic areas for each species will be allocated SRP grant funding amounts for period 8.
- Allocations for each licensee will be determined by their number of eligible wells within identified geographic areas for each Species at Risk as a percentage of total eligible wells within each of the identified geographic areas.
- Once allocations are calculated, and the application period opens, they will be available to be used on sites in any of the three eligible areas.
- Government will contact licensees to communicate their allocation amount prior to the launch of period 8.
- The final list of eligible licensees and their grant allocations will be posted on this webpage on the launch date of period 8.
Additional period 8 details
Oil field service contractors can contract with licensees to do closure activities and apply for an SRP grant to get funding to do the work; licensees cannot apply for this funding – only the contractor doing the work can do so.
- Projects for post-abandonment work activities are eligible for up to 100% grant funding.
- Eligible work includes phase 1 and 2 environmental site assessments, remediation and reclamation work activities.
- Abandonment projects will be accepted within the identified sage grouse area and are eligible for up to 50% grant funding – the licensee or WIP is responsible for paying the remaining amount.
- Licensees using their allocation for abandonment work activities in sage grouse area are encouraged to plan and submit applications for all the work required on the site up to the phase 2 environmental site assessment stage, if necessary.
$1B in federal funds didn’t increase oil well cleanups in Alberta, study suggests
(Source: CBC News) Much of the taxpayer money that has funded oil well cleanup in Alberta may have simply replaced money that energy companies would have spent anyway, according to a new analysis.That means the public is likely paying for private companies’ pollution, says the report from the Parkland Institute, a research group headquartered at the University of Alberta.”It’s hard to say because the data is so limited,” said Megan Egler, author of the institute’s report. “But what I did find is highly, highly suggestive that this funding simply was just replacing the money that would have otherwise been spent by these oil and gas producers.”
Last summer, the federal government announced $1.7 billion for the cleanup of unreclaimed oil and gas wells in Canada. Most of that money — $1 billion — went to Alberta, where the largest problem exists. The province’s United Conservative government administered the funding.
Egler found that in 2019, Alberta’s energy industry spent about $340 million on remediation as part of the province’s area-based closure program, which represents about 70 per cent of Alberta’s cleanup activity.The following year, after the start of the federal funding, about $363 million was spent on such work in Alberta.”I started looking at the spending in past years and it was more or less the same,” Egler said.Much company-funded remediation actually ended after the announcement of the federal program, said Egler.”A lot of these companies actually stopped all their closure work.”As well, Egler said her research raises questions about which companies received the funding.
Almost one-quarter of the $800 million that has so far been distributed went to just five companies, she said.One of them, Canadian Natural Resources Limited, got more than $100 million. CNRL is a profitable company that recently beat analysts’ revenue and dividend forecasts.
Funding distribution questioned Egler notes that funding was not distributed on the basis of which wells had been unreclaimed the longest or which posed the greatest environmental threat. In fact, the first two funding periods were aimed at producers that could not afford the cleanup or were defaulting on landowner lease payments.She said because Alberta would have already been likely to pick up the tab in those circumstances, the federal funding just transferred dollars from one government to another.”The cleanup of these sites relieves both the defaulting owners and the government from paying compensation to landowners,” says the report.
The program does seem to be close to meeting Alberta’s job projections. It has funded more than 1,700 jobs so far, putting it on track to nearly achieve the province’s goal.But Egler points out there’s no way to know if those jobs would have existed anyway. And she says they were expensive.Each job took almost $190,000 in subsidies, she said. That’s $41,000 more per job than similar work done by the Orphan Well Association.”There has been no clear explanation from the government of Alberta why the public dollars to create one job are higher,” the report says.Nor was there any part of the program that measured its contribution to Canada’s climate goals. Unremediated energy wells are a significant source of methane, a potent greenhouse gas.Minister says report inaccurate, doesn’t specify howAlberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage said the report contains inaccuracies, although she didn’t say what they were.”The report … fails to reflect the significant progress made by Alberta’s government on addressing a number of issues it identifies,” she said in an email Wednesday.”We are supporting the economic recovery by making use of Alberta’s specialized oil and gas labour force at a time when they are in need of work.”Savage said the government works with industry and Indigenous groups to continuously improve the program.
But Egler said her report raises questions about the program that aren’t being answered.”One billion dollars cleaning up wells and providing employment — there’s nothing wrong with that,” she said.”We could have had a program that spent the money better. It just ended up being a subsidy for oil and gas producers.”
AER: Invitation for Feedback on New Contamination Management Manual
We are seeking feedback on the proposed new Manual XXX: Contamination Management. The purpose of this manual is to assist industry in understanding the regulatory requirements and expectations for remediating contamination related to conventional oil and gas, in situ, and pipeline activities regulated by the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER).
The manual does not introduce any new requirements; it follows the requirements of the Remediation Regulation released under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act and includes an overview of key concepts and the remedial measures process to support the management and closure of contaminated sites. Further information on how we administer the Remediation Regulation can be found on our website, www.aer.ca > Regulating Development > Project Closure > Remediation > Remediation Regulation Administration.
To provide feedback on the proposed new manual, complete the comment form available on the manual’s webpage. Feedback should be sent by email to [email protected] or by mail to the Alberta Energy Regulator, Remediation and Contamination Management, Suite 1000, 250 – 5 Street SW, Calgary, Alberta T2P 0R4. Feedback will be accepted through Sunday, August 8. All feedback received will be reviewed and may be used in finalizing the manual.
All the comments provided through this consultation will form part of the public record and, at the discretion of the AER, any comment received may be attributed to the specific individuals providing it. Personal information provided with comments will be collected, used, and disclosed in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The AER may use the personal contact information you provide for follow-up communication related to your feedback.
The draft edition of the manual is available on our website, www.aer.ca > Regulating Development > Rules and Directives > Manuals. For more information, contact our Customer Contact Centre by phone at 403-297-8311 (1-855-297-8311 toll free) or by email at [email protected].
Alberta’s Order of the Bighorn is back
Alberta’s government is now accepting nominations for the Order of the Bighorn, which recognizes individuals for their outstanding volunteer environmental conservation efforts.
In celebration of Environment and Parks’ 50th anniversary, the government is resuming these distinguished awards, which provide an opportunity to recognize individuals whose voluntary efforts contribute to achieving shared conservation goals in the province.
“I am excited to re-introduce the Order of the Bighorn award and acknowledge the volunteers making a difference in conservation across our province. Albertans who have received the Order of the Bighorn award are great examples of civil society’s efforts in environmental stewardship.” – Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks
Nominations are now open
Nominations for the 2021 Order of the Bighorn are open from July 8 to Sept. 7. The public can nominate individuals who have made significant voluntary contributions to fish, wildlife and habitat conservation in Alberta by submitting an application via email to [email protected] or by mail to:
Order of the Bighorn awards
Alberta Environment and Parks
c/o Fish and Wildlife Stewardship
6th Floor Forestry Building
9920 108 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T5K 2M4
For more information on how to submit a nomination and about the awards, visit alberta.ca/order-of-the-bighorn.aspx
The Order of the Bighorn was first established in 1982. The most recent ceremony was held in 2015.
Since 1982, 114 awards have been bestowed.
The original name was inspired by the Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, Alberta’s official provincial animal.
The Order of the Bighorn awards are back this year thanks to the generous support of sponsors and will be held every two years.
Nominations for this year’s awards will be received, with an adjudication and notification to award winners, from September to October.
Nominated Albertans will be evaluated by a judging panel based on a demonstration of merit according to award themes, including:
Engaging youth in conservation initiatives.
Enhancing local, regional or provincial fish or wildlife populations through direct actions.
Focusing on community engagement and inspiring others to act.
Increasing public education and awareness about conservation and the environment.
Promoting habitat conservation or land stewardship ethics.
Demonstrating conservation by youth (under 18 years of age).
The adjudication panel will consist of eight Alberta Environment and Parks employees from various sectors.
Winners will receive the highly coveted bighorn sheep bronzed bust as well as an awards certificate.
The Order of the Bighorn event will be held at the beginning of November, with details to follow.
BC: Science to help drive old growth deferrals
The Government of British Columbia has brought together an independent Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel to support its next steps in its science-based approach to transforming old growth management.
“This new technical panel will ensure we’re using the best science and data available to identify at-risk old growth ecosystems and prioritize areas for deferral,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “We are committed to a science-based approach to old growth management, and our work with the advisory panel will help us break down barriers between the different interpretations of data that are out there.”
The five members of the Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel will build on initial technical work by government and others to provide maps, analysis and detailed information on the status of old growth forest ecosystems in B.C. This work will be critical to improving public information on old growth, consistent with Recommendation 5 from the Old Growth Strategic Review, and will help inform government-to-government decisions with First Nations on future deferral areas. Decisions on specific deferrals will continue to be made at a government-to-government level with First Nations rights and title holders.
The technical panel will also provide recommendations and advice on priority areas for development of deferrals that will aid in government-to-government engagement. This work addresses a priority recommendation of the independent strategic review panel on old growth – Recommendation 6 – to defer development in old forests where ecosystems are at very high and near-term risk of irreversible biodiversity loss, until a new strategy is implemented.
“I am hopeful that this step marks a movement towards increased transparency and towards the promised paradigm shift needed to maintain ecological resilience and biodiversity” said Karen Price, forest ecologist and Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel member.
In September 2020, government released the report of the Old Growth Strategic Review and committed to adopting all 14 of its recommendations. To date, 11 areas of old growth throughout B.C. have been deferred from harvest, most recently in the Fairy Creek watershed and central Walbran area.
“Old growth forests provide unique and critical habitats that preserve biodiversity, support clean watersheds and capture carbon crucial to reducing our province’s climate footprint,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy. “This panel’s work will be a key element in transforming forestry and conservation practices here in B.C. by drawing on science to ensure that the important range of old growth forest values are protected for generations to come.”
Government is also addressing the old growth panel’s high priority recommendation to consult with Indigenous peoples and has committed to continued consultations and work on further deferrals with First Nations rights and titleholders.
To view the Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel terms of reference, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/Old_Growth_Adv_%20Tech_Panel_TermsOfReference.pdf
Old growth forests and B.C.’s approach: www.gov.bc.ca/oldgrowth
B.C.’s latest old growth deferral areas: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2021PREM0038-001122
Remediation Technology News and Resource
(The following are selected items from the US EPA’s Tech Direct – http://clu-in.org/techdirect/)
Upcoming Live Internet Seminars
Risk Management During the Cost Estimating Process – July 14, 2021, 1:00PM-2:30PM EDT (17:00-18:30 GMT). The Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) Denver Post and Philadelphia Post along with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are hosting a series of webinars based on talks given at recent Design and Construction Issues at Hazardous Waste Sites (DCHWS) Symposiums. This presentation will discuss the identification and quantification of risk during progressive phases of design; how to mitigate risk through contract language or added cost; provide examples of how risk costs are estimated, assigned, and weighted due to probability and impact of risk; as well as how multiple risk components are analyzed and a cost strategy is developed. Examples will also show high risk projects and mitigation as well as low risk projects and mitigation. For more information and to register, please visit https://clu-in.org/live.
Increasing Treatment Certainty while Controlling Remediation Cost – Case Studies using Hydraulic Fracturing to Deliver Amendments at Low-Permeability Sites – July 14, 2021, 3:30PM-5:00PM EDT (19:30-21:00 GMT). The Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) Denver Post and Philadelphia Post along with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are hosting a series of webinars based on talks given at recent Design and Construction Issues at Hazardous Waste Sites (DCHWS) Symposiums. Fractures have enabled or enhanced remediation of soil, groundwater, and bedrock for decades. Advanced hydraulic fracturing methods can predictably deliver remediation amendments to low-permeability formations where amendment delivery via Darcy Flow is unreliable or ineffective. This session will present multiple case studies demonstrating the successful application of hydraulic fracturing to deliver remediation amendments to low permeability sites impacted with chlorinated solvents, which would otherwise require more expensive remedial approaches. These case studies include a range of in situ remediation approaches, including chemical oxidation, chemical reduction, and enhanced bioremediation. Implementation costs and performance monitoring results will be presented to demonstrate the potential for hydraulic fracturing to limit project costs and drive remediation outcomes during treatment of these challenging sites.For more information and to register, please visit https://clu-in.org/live.
New Documents and Web Resources
Updated Dioxins Focus Area. Dioxins, or polychlorinated dibenzodioxins (PCDDs), are formed as products of incomplete combustion and as byproducts of manufacturing. Although some PCDDs in the environment are released during forest fires and thus natural in origin, they are also released in combustion emissions from municipal and industrial waste incinerators and from burning fossil fuels and wood. As byproducts, PCDDs may be released during the manufacture of chlorinated chemicals (e.g., wood preservatives and herbicides), secondary metal smelting (particularly aluminum, copper, and lead), cement kilns, and chlorine bleaching of wood pulp for paper. The CLU-IN Dioxins Focus Area has been updated to reflect current chemistry, behavior, occurrence, toxicology, analytical methods, and ongoing research in potential treatment technologies. Visit the updated Focus Area at https://clu-in.org/dioxins.Technology Innovation News Survey Corner. The Technology Innovation News Survey contains market/commercialization information; reports on demonstrations, feasibility studies and research; and other news relevant to the hazardous waste community interested in technology development. Recent issues, complete archives, and subscription information is available at https://clu-in.org/products/tins/. The following resources were included in recent issues:
- Innovative Sampling Methods and Data Analysis for Reduced Long-Term Monitoring Costs
- Groundwater to Surface Water Interface Fact Sheets
- Enhanced Aquifer Recharge: Influence of Stormwater on Groundwater Quality and Aquifer Recharge
- Use of a Novel Integrated Passive Flux Sampler to Monitor the Spreading of Solutes in Groundwater
- Machine Learning Pattern Recognition for Forensic Analysis of Detected Per- And Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Environmental Samples
- New Technique Sheds Light on PFAS in Coastal Watersheds
- DoD Vapor Intrusion Handbook Fact Sheet Update – Vapor Intrusion Preferential Pathways
- Advances in Understanding PFAS Ecological Risks
ESAA Member News
Nichols Environmental (Canada) – Ownership Transition
We are excited to announce that effective July 1, 2021, members of the current leadership team are the new owners of Nichols. Since the company’s start in 1997, it has always been the goal to transition ownership to the employees, and today that goal is realized.
The new ownership group has a combined 98 years of experience with Nichols and remains committed to advancing the Nichols brand. On a day-to-day basis, it’s business as usual with the same project managers, employees, philosophy, and dedication to excellence that you have come to expect from Nichols.
Barry Rakewich, P.Ag., EP, who has been with Nichols since 2001 and most recently held the position of General Manager–Environmental, has been appointed as President. Barry will be supported by Ryan Taylor, P.Biol., EP (2000) and David Nuell, P.Ag., EP (2007) as Executive Vice Presidents–Environmental and Matthew Dean, P.Eng. (2012) as Executive Vice President–Engineering. Robert Dickie, P.Geol., R.E.T., co-founder and outgoing president, will stay on with Nichols as an advisor and mentor to staff and management.
“In 1997, with the assistance of Cal Nichols, we began Nichols with the goal of helping our clients in the most effective, innovative, and cost-efficient ways possible. As the company grew, we worked diligently to instill this thought process in our management and staff,” stated Robert and Sandra Dickie. “Today our dream has been realized and we are very excited to see the management team move forward. We want to take this opportunity to thank all our staff and clients for putting your trust in us over the last 24 years. Everyone at Nichols is driven to support our clients and this commitment is stronger than ever during this exciting time.”
“It is truly a privilege to provide continued leadership to our amazing staff and to support our valued clients,” stated Barry Rakewich, President. “As we move into this new era, we remain committed to maintaining the same high-quality standards our clients have come to expect from us over the past 24 years. To Robert and Sandra Dickie, we are thankful for the opportunities and support you have provided and look forward to continuing our amazing relationship into the future.”
Nichols is a mid-sized geo and environmental consulting firm that operates in Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan. Nichols offers customized service and our reputation for quality work ensures that the most practical approach is taken to address the environmental, civil, geotechnical, and hazardous building material issues of our clients.
Questions related to this corporate announcement can be directed to Mr. Rakewich ([email protected], 780-484-3377).
New ESAA Members
ESAA welcomes the following new members. If you are not a member of ESAA you can join now via: https://esaa.org/membership/join-esaa/
J.S. Held LLC
Unit 303, 9525 201 Street
Langley, BC V1M 4A5
Phone: (604) 362-6422
Lance Pizzariello, Director, EHS Services (Canada)
Founded in 1974, J.S. Held is a global multi-disciplinary consulting firm, respected for our exceptional success providing innovative solutions for complex construction and environmental matters worldwide. Our comprehensive list of specialties falls under seven prevailing service lines: Environmental, Health & Safety Services Construction Advisory Services Program & Project Management Dispute Resolution Forensic Architectural & Engineering Services Forensic Accounting Surety Services Equipment Services Property Damage Consulting We have over 1000 + multi-talented professionals and specialists located throughout Canada, Latin America, the United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States available to provide services in a timely manner. Construction claim experts, construction schedulers, budget experts, estimators, engineers, and construction managers are just a fraction of the experts we have on staff. Collectively they possess 100’s of years of technical field experience and have provided consulting services on more than 100,0000 commercial, industrial, high-rise, unique structures, governmental, residential, and infrastructure assignments. This extensive experience, along with our uncompromising commitment to our Clients, ensures our position as one of the leading consulting firms in the world. We continually strive to distinguish ourselves as leaders in the field of Environmental Health & Safety consulting consulting in three main ways; Approach to the Work, Accessibility, and Project Management Experience.
150 Eglinton Avenue East, Unit 806
Toronto, ON M4P 1E8
Phone: (416) 722-8109
Todd Latham, Publisher
We are Actual. Our focus is to deliver quality content and actionable insights via marketing, communications and events for the Canadian infrastructure, water and environment sectors. We’re the proud producers of ReNew Canada, Water Canada, and Environment Journal platforms and leverage our deep knowledge of, and engagement in, the industries we serve to provide a unique competitive advantage to our readers, advertisers and agency customers. Actual Media is ideally positioned to help clients translate their often complex messaging into easily digested, readily absorbed campaigns that deliver actual value. Actual Media provides a variety of services and solutions – with real benefits for our clients: – Creative Services We are a full- service agency with an action-oriented, creative team who work closely with our clients to strategize, plan and deliver their projects and campaigns. Our personal connection, diverse skill sets and accountability combined with the bench strength of our professional network allows us to invest fully in our customer success. If you’re in the business of water, environment and infrastructure and looking for website development, market research, social media strategy, custom publishing, video production, content creation, direct marketing, brand development or just a helping hand – we’ve got you covered. – Industry Events and Roundtables Actual Media provides turnkey in-person and virtual event management from logistics, vendor management and execution to invite list creation, program development and post-event content deliverables for one flat fee or as part of a sponsorship package. We provide tangible, reliable, useful outcomes and deliverables from corporate events to industry galas and will go to great lengths to make our events (and our clients and attendee experiences) a success. – Marketing and Advertising Our deep knowledge of, and engagement in, the industries we serve provides a unique competitive advantage to our clients in delivering their marketing and communications. We get to know our clients well so we can best tell their stories. And because we “live” in the water, infrastructure and environment/cleantech world and manage the leading print and digital platforms in those sectors, we can deliver guaranteed impressions, visibility and brand recognition.
150 Eglinton Avenue East, Unit 806
Toronto, ON M4P 1E8
Phone: (416) 444-5842
October 13-15, 2021
Early Bird Pricing Now in Effect
ESAA is pleased to announce that RemTech is back and (assuming restrictions also) will be in-person at the Fairmont Banff Springs, October 13-15th. We hope you will join us to celebrate being together, along with RemTech‘s 20th Birthday.
We look forward to welcoming everyone back, safely.
Save the Date: Emerging Issues Conference
The Net-Zero Future: Investing in Sustainability
Wednesday, November 24, 2021
Canad Inns Destination Centre Polo Park
8:00 AM – 4:00 PM, with cocktail reception to follow
MEIA is excited to announce our annual Emerging Issues Conference:
The Net-Zero Future: Investing in Sustainability
We have begun planning an in-person event for November and are excited to see everyone there!
Sponsorship opportunities are available! Stay tuned for more updates!
ESAA Job Board
Check out the new improved ESAA Job Board. Members can post ads for free.
- Intermediate to Senior Biophysical Specialist/Terrestrial Ecologist – NorthWind Land Resources
- Project Technologist, Environmental Due Diligence & Remediation – Pinchin
- Remediation Specialist/ Supervisor – Trium Environmental
- Remediation Engineer/ Scientist – Trium Environmental
- Intermediate/Senior Environmental Specialist – Summit Liability Solutions
- Senior Project Manager –
- Intermediate/Senior Environmental Specialist –
- Environmental Specialist –
- Environmental Analyst – Indian Oil and Gas
- Junior Biologist –
- Sales and Marketing Administrator –
- Intermediate/Senior Environmental Specialist –
- Business Development Representative –
- Intermediate Environmental Project Managers – Calgary, Edmonton, Medicine Hat – TerraLogix Solutions