It’s time for a new vision for Alberta’s Eastern Slopes

September 1, 2021

The Government of Alberta is interested in developing a new coal development policy. The Coal Policy Committee, appointed by the Minister of Energy, is asking Albertans for advice and recommendations about strategic goals, considerations, and desired outcomes for this coal policy.

Along with CPAWS Northern Alberta and Yellowstone to Yukon, we have developed a submission to the Coal Policy for a new vision and plan for Alberta’s Eastern Slopes. We believe that above all else, conservation and community values must be protected, and this needs to be reflected in the development of a new coal policy. 

We have analyzed the strengths and weaknesses of current policies in Alberta relevant to the Eastern Slopes, reviewed the importance of the Eastern Slopes based on scientific evidence, and defined recommendations for a new vision for the region. These recommendations are based on the critical function of the Eastern Slopes as they contribute to conservation, social, and economic benefits in Alberta. 

Read the full submission or the executive summary highlighting our recommendations. 

Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS)

The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Southern and Northern Alberta Chapters (CPAWS), have long been involved in conservation and public lands management in Alberta since their inception in the 1960s. Today, these CPAWS chapters are supported by tens of thousands of members, supporters, and donors across the province, and staffed by a diversity of Albertans who have devoted their careers to appreciating and conserving Alberta’s wilderness. We work collaboratively with provincial and federal governments, industry, Indigenous Peoples, and other stakeholders to provide landscape-scale, science-based support and advice for the protection and effective management of our parks and wilderness areas. We pride ourselves on being a voice for practical conservation solutions of Alberta’s lands and waters. CPAWS Northern and Southern Alberta chapters have been recognized stakeholders in various land-use planning processes and decisions along Alberta Eastern Slopes over the past few decades.

Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y)

Y2Y’s mission is connecting and protecting habitat so people and nature can thrive. The 3,400-kilometre Yellowstone-to-Yukon region is one of the most intact mountain systems in the world and retains the full complement of large and medium-sized mammals that lived here before European colonization. Along with over 450 diverse partners, Y2Y has worked for over 25 years to ensure that wildlife populations in this region remain connected, healthy, and genetically diverse. Our vision of an interconnected system of wildlands and waters in the Yellowstone-to-Yukon region also aims to harmonize the needs of people with those of nature by working to ensure development is consistent with the long-term needs of wildlife species.