Alberta energy minister to release update on coal survey; discuss consultation process

The Alberta government says it will release an update Friday about a recently concluded online survey on coal mining in the Rocky Mountains.

Energy Minister Sonya Savage will also discuss plans for public engagement on the highly controversial issue at a 1 p.m. news conference.

Read more: Alberta coal consultation terms of reference rule out land use, water concerns

Ron Wallace, chairman of the panel appointed to lead those consultations, will also be in attendance.

The survey and consultation panel were created by the United Conservative government after it faced intense resistance to its plans to dramatically expand open-pit coal mining in the province’s summits and foothills.

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Tens of thousands of hectares along the province’s mountainous western spine have been leased for coal exploration.

Read more: Alberta energy minister announces date for start of coal consultations, no other details

Although the government has stopped selling new leases, drilling and roadbuilding on leases already sold is expected to continue.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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