Application 1762708

Notice of Application
Application No. 1762708
Athabasca Oil Corporation
Athabasca Oil Sands Area

The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) has received Application No. 1762708 from the Athabasca Oil Corporation (AOC) for approval of the proposed Hangingstone project expansion under section 13 of the Oil Sands Conservation Act. The AER is reviewing the application together with Water Act File No. 00316166, Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA) Application No. 002-289664, and the associated environmental impact assessment (EIA).

Description of the Project

The AOC has applied to construct, operate, and reclaim an expansion to its existing Hangingstone project (HS1), which is an in situ oil sands project located about 20 kilometres southwest of Fort McMurray in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. The oil sands leases are in Townships 85 to 88, Ranges 9 to 13, West of the 4th Meridian. The Hangingstone expansion would use steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) technology to recover bitumen from the McMurray Formation. The AOC currently has regulatory approval to construct, operate, and reclaim the HS1, which has a bitumen production capacity of 1908 cubic metres per day (m3/d) (12 000 barrels per day [bbl/d]).

The Hangingstone project expansion would consist of two additional phases to the existing project: Hangingstone 2 (HS2) and Hangingstone 3 (HS3). The total bitumen production capacity of HS1, HS2, and HS3 would be 13 038 m3/day (82 000 bbl/d), an incremental increase in production capacity of 11 130 m3/d (70 000 bbl/d). Pending regulatory approval, HS2 and HS3 construction is expected to start in 2015, with initial production expected to begin in 2017. HS2 and HS3 would include a central processing facility, thermal injection wells, production wells, disposal wells, dewatering facilities, utilities, and associated infrastructure.

The AOC has prepared and submitted the following documents:

  • Application No. 1762708 to the AER, under section 13 of the Oil Sands Conservation Act, to construct and operate the proposed expansion.
  • Application No. 002-289664, under part 2, division 2 of theEPEA, to construct, operate, and reclaim the proposed expansion.
  • An application File No. 00316166, pursuant to section 50(1) of the Water Act, to increase the existing allocation of 479 975 m3 of groundwater from the south Hangingstone channel aquifer (Empress Formation) by 23 725 m3 annually for a total allocation of 503 700 m3 for the purposes of SAGD steam generation and utilities at HS1, HS2, and HS3. If approved, the requested increase of 23 725 m3 annually would be issued under a separate licence. Groundwater would be extracted from three existing wells located at Legal Subdivision (LSD) 6, Section 12, Township 86, Range 9, West of the 4th Meridian, LSD 4-8-86-8-W4M, and LSD 15-33-85-8-W4M.
  • Notice of EPEA Application No. 002-289664 and Water Act File No. 00316166 was published on the AER’s website on November 28, 2013. The deadline to file a statement of concern in relation to the EPEA and Water Act applications expired on March 10, 2014.
  • An EIA report associated with the above application.

For a copy of the above application, contact
Athabasca Oil Corporation
Bow Valley Square
Suite 2000
250 – 6 Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta
Attention: Sheryll Tavener
Telephone: 403-237-8227
Fax: 403-264-4640

To view the application, EIA, and supporting documents, contact

AER Information Management Branch
Suite 1000, 250 – 5 Street SW
Calgary, Alberta  T2P 0R4
Telephone: 1-855-297-8311
(toll free; option 2)
Viewing hours: 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Alberta Government Library
Great West Life Building
6th Floor, 9920 – 108 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T5K 2M4
Telephone: 780-427-5828
(toll free: 780-310-0000)

AER Fort McMurray Regional Office
2nd Floor, Provincial Building
Box 15, 9915 Franklin Avenue
Fort McMurray, Alberta  T9H 2K4
Telephone: 780-743-7214


How to File a Statement of Concern

For your statement of concern to be considered, it must be filed before 4:00 p.m. on May 30, 2014.

Send one copy of your statement of concern to the AOC at the name and address above and one copy to

Authorizations Review and Coordination Team
Alberta Energy Regulator
Suite 1000, 250 – 5 Street SW
Calgary, Alberta  T2P 0R4

Contents of a Statement of Concern

For your submission to be considered a valid statement of concern, it must include

  1. why you believe you may be directly and adversely affected by a decision  on the application;
  2. the nature of your objection to the application;
  3. the outcome of the application you advocate;
  4. the location of your land, residence, or activity in relation to the location of the energy resource that is the subject of the proposed application; and
  5. your contact information including your name, address in Alberta, telephone number, e-mail address or, if you do not have an email address, your fax number.

Section 49 of the Alberta Energy Regulator Rules of Practice (Rules of Practice) requires that all documents and information filed in a proceeding be placed on the public record. If you file a submission, you must not include any personal information that you do not want to appear on or are not authorized to put on the public record. Section 49(2) of the Rules of Practice states how to apply to the AER for an order to keep information confidential.

Questions of Constitutional Law

In addition to giving notice according to section 12 of the Administrative Procedures and Jurisdiction Act and schedule 2 of the Designation of Constitutional Decision Makers Regulation, you must include the following information in your submission if you intend to raise a question of constitutional law:

  1. the constitutional question you intend to raise
  2. the legal argument you intend to make
  3. the evidence you intend to rely on in support of your legal argument

Under section 21 of the Responsible Energy Development Act, the AER does not have jurisdiction to assess the adequacy of Crown consultation associated with the rights of aboriginal peoples as recognized and affirmed under the Constitution Act.

For information on AER procedures, contact the authorization specialist, Ken Hale, by phone at 403-297-8405 or by e-mail to

Issued at Calgary, Alberta, on April 30, 2014.
Patricia M. Johnston, Q.C., General Counsel