AER Bulletin 2014-17

AER Bulletin 2014-17: New Requirements for the Capture and Flaring, Incinerating, or Conserving of All Casing Gas and Tank-Top Gas by New and Existing Operations in the Peace River Area

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New Requirements for the Capture and Flaring, Incinerating, or Conserving of All Casing Gas and Tank-Top Gas by New and Existing Operations in the Peace River Area

May 01, 2014

This bulletin announces revisions to Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) Directive 056: Energy Development Applications and Schedules (Directive 056) and Directive 060: Upstream Petroleum Industry Flaring, Incinerating, and Venting (Directive 060).

On April 15, 2014, the AER accepted the recommendations contained in Decision 2014 ABAER 005: Report of Recommendations on Odours and Emissions in the Peace River Area (Peace River proceeding) that fall within the AER’s jurisdiction.1 The following is the AER’s response to recommendations 1 and 2 in the Operations section of the report.

  • Directive 060 has been amended to require all licensees of heavy oil and bitumen operations in the Peace River area to capture and flare, incinerate, or conserve all casing gas and tank-top gas. This amendment is effective August 15, 2014, with the following exception:
    • Licensees of operations that exist as of May 15, 2014, in the Seal Lake and Walrus areas (as defined in Directive 060, figure 10) may submit a report to the AER by June 15, 2014, demonstrating targeted actions to reduce and eventually eliminate all venting of casing gas and tank-top gas. These licensees must comply with the Directive 060 requirement by August 15, 2014, or a later date as directed by the AER upon consideration of the filed report. The AER will correspond directly with area operators to provide them with guidance on the specific information that the AER requires in the report in order to assess implementation of the targeted actions. 
  • Directive 056 (section 8) has been amended such that
    • effective May 15, 2014, applicants applying to produce heavy oil and bitumen in the Peace River area must submit documentation with their facility licence application that demonstrates the capture and flaring, incinerating, or conserving of all casing gas and tank-top gas; and
    • licensees of existing heavy oil and bitumen facilities in the Peace River area that are currently venting casing gas or tank top gas must submit a Directive 056 amendment application to be compliant with section 8.7.3 of Directive 060, which is effective
      August 15, 2014.

The AER normally publishes proposed regulatory changes for stakeholder feedback. The above amendments to Directives 056 and 060 are a direct response to recommendations made by the panel in the Peace River proceeding, which was a public proceeding in which many stakeholders participated.  The AER accepted all recommendations that were within its jurisdiction. For these reasons, the AER has determined that no further stakeholder input is necessary in connection with the changes announced in this bulletin.  

Any questions regarding this matter may be directed to PeaceRiverRecommendations@aer.ca.

<original signed by>

Carol Crowfoot
Vice President
Regulatory Operations and Economics Branch


1 The report, as well as the AER’s response, can be found at
http://www.aer.ca/applications-and-notices/hearings/proceeding-1769924.