If you work in agriculture, you’re passionate about land-use planning, and the future of agriculture lands, you’ll want to engage with the Edmonton Metropolitan Region (EMR) on the development of a Regional Agriculture Master Plan (RAMP).
Edmonton Metropolitan Region is a nearly 9,500 square-kilometer region around Edmonton. Spread over four counties, the region includes: 13 municipalities, six cities, three towns, and approximately one-third of Alberta’s population.
With representation from each of the thirteen municipalities, the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board (EMRB) plans and oversees the region’s Growth Management Plan, which includes the development of a RAMP.
RAMP is a regional plan for agriculture. It will provide EMR member municipalities with policy direction in land use planning, prioritizing land use for the future of agriculture and the agriculture sector.
According to Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board, RAMP aims to
1. Identify and conserve an adequate supply of prime agricultural lands to provide a secure local food source for future generations.
2. Minimize the fragmentation and conversion of prime agricultural lands for non-agricultural uses.
3. Promote diversification and value-added agriculture production and plan infrastructure to support the agricultural sector and regional food system.
In 2020, EMRB’s Task Force completed its first round of stakeholder consultation on RAMP. Using what they learned, the Board has created several draft land-use policies to shape regional land-use planning.
With those drafts in hand, EMRB is into its second round of public engagement, and wants to hear you — ranchers, farmers, producers, landowners, municipal leaders, invested residents — feel about the draft policies.
After reviewing the Draft Regional Agriculture Master Plan, there are two ways you’re encouraged to provide feedback:
The survey will be open until June 8, 2021, with engagement sessions underway from June 3- June 10, 2021.
After EMRB receives feedback, it will create a “What We Heard” report, which will be considered for the draft RAMP, and recommended to the Board for approval. Once approved, it will be presented to the Government of Alberta as part of the regional Growth Plan.
Photo: Canada Beef Inc.