WHEREAS the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board (EUB) has in Bulletin 2005-08 proposed changes to the subsurface well-spacing regulations and application process;AND WHEREAS under the proposal, surface landowners would no longer be notified when a well-spacing application is submitted;AND WHEREAS if Bulletin 2005-08 is implemented, higher baseline well densities will be allowed for the Mannville and shallower formations in that part of Alberta east of the 5th Meridian and south of Township 53, i.e. an area of Alberta bounded by Edmonton and Lloydminster to the north, the U.S. border to the south, Calgary to the west, and the Saskatchewan border to the east;AND WHEREAS the proposed changes were made public on March 10, 2005, with a deadline for comments of April 22, 2005, and this comment period is too short for careful consideration of the proposed changes and for meaningful input to be provided;AND WHEREAS the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Committee on Coalbed Methane, upon which the AAMDC is represented, in a fully transparent, government-directed process, has not yet submitted its final report with respect to a future regulatory framework for coalbed methane production, and the implementation of Bulletin 2005-08 would pre-empt the recommendations of that committee;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties urge the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board to withdraw its proposed changes to the well-spacing regulations and application process until after the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Committee on Coalbed Methane has issued its final report to the Minister of Energy;AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that the AAMDC urge the provincial government to ensure that the well-spacing regulations and application process for energy projects is consistent with an overall regulatory framework that respects rural interests.
EUB Bulletin 2005-08 is attached for your information.
The AEUB has agreed to fully consider the recommendations of the Multi-stakeholder Advisory Committee on Coal Bed Methane (MAC) with respect to any proposed changes to its well-spacing regulatory process. In October 2006, the AAMDC made a presentation to the AEUB on a number of resource-based issues and on the boards strategic 5 year business plan. AAMDC stressed the need for aquifer protection and also the need for a comprehensive plan to deal with pipeline proliferation, increased density of wells and the need for interveners to be granted standing in front of the board.