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June 17, 2021 Issues & Insights

Joint Review Panel says risks outweigh rewards for Grassy Mountain coal project

A joint review panel for the Alberta Energy Regulator has issued its report denying the provincial application for the Grassy Mountain coal project.

The report, submitted to the federal Minister of Environment and Climate Change, concluded that the project would likely result in “significant adverse environmental effects.” 

The panel made specific mention of the potential negative impacts on surface water quality, westslope cutthroat trout and its habitat, whitebark pine, rough fescue grasslands, vegetation species, and community biodiversity. Adverse effects on the physical and cultural heritage of some First Nations were also underscored in the findings. 

The Government of Alberta released a statement on the report acknowledging the rigorous review process, stating:

“The protection of our lands and water remains of critical importance as we develop our natural resources. Comprehensive land-use planning supports conservation and environmental protection efforts while ensuring our tourism, agriculture, energy and forestry sectors can be developed in a sustainable way.”

The public engagement process to determine Alberta’s long-term approach to coal will continue, with “more to say on water quality management in the days ahead.”

For more: Joint Review Panel for Grassy Mountain Coal Project Concludes its Review (Government of Canada)
Grassy Mountain coal project recommendation: Joint statement (Government of Alberta)
Report of the Joint Review Panel

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