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As the Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) prepares for the launch of the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) upon the proclamation of the Responsible Energy Development Act (REDA), industry is advised of the following.
Regulations and Rules have been made by the Government of Alberta, providing further details as to the legislative framework of the AER, including the transition of the ERCB to the AER.
Regulations made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council under REDA are available online from Alberta’s Queen’s Printer, as follows:
The Alberta Energy Regulator’s Rules of Practice and Administration Fees Rules are made by the Minister of Energy under REDA and are available online at http://www.energy.alberta.ca/Initiatives/ RegulatoryEnhancement.asp.
Creating the AER is a complex undertaking that requires careful and multistaged implementation. For this reason, the Government of Alberta is taking the time to ensure a well-managed transition through a three-phased approach. Phase 1, which is expected to occur mid- to late June 2013, will involve the launch of the AER and its new governance model. Phase 2, which is expected to occur in the fall of 2013, will see the AER assume additional responsibilities from Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development (ESRD), beginning with public land and geophysical jurisdiction and a new landowner agreement registry. New rules and processes for public engagement and participation are also under development. Phase 3 will involve the transfer of environmental and water authorization and related functions, as they relate to oil and gas activities, to the AER and will complete the process of creating a single regulator for upstream oil, oil sands, natural gas, and coal development in Alberta.
All phases will be complete by spring 2014.
Upon proclamation of REDA, all ERCB staff e-mail addresses (e.g., email@example.com) will be changed to firstname.lastname@example.org (e.g., email@example.com), and all generic e-mail addresses will change from firstname.lastname@example.org to email@example.com (e.g., firstname.lastname@example.org will change to email@example.com). E-mails that are still sent to ercb.ca addresses will be automatically redirected to the corresponding aer.ca address.
Until further notice, application and submission processes continue in a similar manner. Energy applications that were traditionally submitted to the ERCB will be submitted to the AER. Deadlines and requirements for the submission of information and data remain unchanged.
Applications that have been submitted to the ERCB which have not yet been dispositioned as of the date REDA is proclaimed will continue to be processed by the AER, in accordance with REDA and the Regulations and Rules under REDA.
Applications that have been and would normally be submitted to ESRD will continue to be submitted to and processed by ESRD until the AER assumes the application and related functions for those approvals through phases 2 and 3 and corresponding processes are announced. Note that any change in process or submission requirements will be fully communicated to industry in advance through bulletins, awareness sessions, and other materials.
All ERCB compliance assurance activities, including inspections, monitoring, and responding to landowner concerns, that were previously carried out by the ERCB will continue to be carried out by the same staff and field offices of the AER. This includes incident response and reporting and emergency management.
Stakeholders will be advised of the AER’s new 24-hour toll free emergency reporting line when the Government of Alberta proclaims REDA.
The new website, www.aer.ca, will provide detailed information on AER requirements and initiatives. The website will be smartphone compatible and will include links to social media feeds operated by the AER for information updates. The AER will also launch a systems and tools portal which includes user guides and links to all AER systems, including the Digital Data Submission system, map viewers, and query tools.
Some links and bookmarks to www.ercb.ca will be automatically redirected to www.aer.ca; however, most old links and bookmarks will be broken and will need to be reset.
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Acting Chief Operating Officer