Sturgeon County | Resource Extraction
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Resource Extraction Regulatory Review ProjectResource Extraction Regulatory Review Project

PART I: THE REVIEW 

THE REVEW: OUTCOMES

The ‘Resource Extraction Regulatory Review’ aims to assess Sturgeon County's existing regulations related to the sand and gravel (aggregate) industry to ensure an appropriate balance between economic, social, health, and environmental outcomes.

The review includes a consideration of Sturgeon County's existing bylaws, inputs from industry representatives, municipal priorities, and inputs received through public engagement. Sturgeon County will also strongly consider best practices from across the province that are grounded in scientific data. 

 

THE REVIEW: PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT 

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT AT A GLANCE

Public engagement forms an important part of the review, and we appreciate the time taken by the community to get involved. Your voice matters!

Throughout this review you are invited to learn about the aggregate industry, Sturgeon County's existing bylaws, practices within other municipalities, and ways that could be considered to enhance our own practices. 

For more information about the approval of this public engagement, please see the associated press release.

There are many ways to get involved in the review and have your say. Note that engagement has been extended until June 17 at 5:00 PM - please see the "Have Your Say" and "Updates" tabs for more details.

  • Online: This website (www.sturgeoncounty.ca/ResourceExtraction) is the primary source of information for the review and includes opportunities to connect with Sturgeon County and provide input.
  • Hard Copy Mailings: If you are unable to access the internet or prefer print materials for reading accessibility, you are invited to contact the project team to receive hard copy materials by mail, or to participate in a telephone meeting.
  • Public Hearing: Following the public engagement program, a public hearing with County Council is scheduled for August 25, 2020 and offers another opportunity to learn about final recommendations and potential bylaw amendments, and to provide input.

 

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & COVID-19

Due to the current public health situation related to COVID-19, in-person events will be replaced with alternative options such as online engagement and mailed, hard copy materials. We recognize that this is a challenging time for many residents. We are committed to working with the community to ensure those that are interested have the opportunity to learn about the review and get involved.

 

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT: OUR ADVERTISING

To ensure that everyone has their say in this process at-a-distance, we are reaching out to residents of Sturgeon County in diverse and creative ways. Here are some places you might see or hear about the review:

  • Online: Of course, we’re advertising this on our website and will be keeping our engagment page up to date. 
  • Social Media: Stay tuned to our social media for updates.
  • Email: If you want to subscribe to email updates on the review, you can do that here: Subscribe to Mailing List.
  • Radio: We’re on the radio, in case you’re keeping up that way.
  • On the Road: We have road signs at key locations that direct you to our enagement webpage 
  • At Community Hubs: Even at a distance, there are places we frequent. We have placed signage at many community mailboxes to increase visibility.
  • Mail Out: We have sent a letter advertising this engagement to residents in areas of the County closest to resource extraction. Click here to see where we sent out mailouts to
  • Newspapers: During the course of this engagement, there will be ads in local newspapers informing readers of this review. 

 

THE REVIEW: ANTICIPATED TIMELINE

The review includes public engagement, the development of a best practices report, a 'what we heard' report, and a final report and set of recommendations to Sturgeon County Council. If recommendations result in proposed bylaw amendments, there will also be a County Council public hearing process. 

Potential Dates:

  • The public engagement will take place from May 19 to June 12, 2020. (UPDATE: Due to increased demand, engagement has been extended to June 17, 2020)
  • The best practices report, What We Heard Report from the public engagement, and final recommendations report is expected to be complete in July 2020. 
  • If required, bylaw recommendations would be presented to Council for first reading on July 14, 2020.
  • If required, the public hearing would be expected to occur on August 25, 2020. This public hearing would be open to the public to attend and provide input on any proposed bylaw changes. Depending on the public health status in August, this public hearing may take place online, to be determined at a later date.
  • If required, second and third readings of a proposed bylaw would be expected to occur on September 8, 2020.

Resource Extraction

PART II: AGGREGATE

AGGREGATE: WHAT IS AGGREGATE?

The term 'aggregate' is used to describe rock products like sand and gravel. Aggregates are non-renewable resources and are located in limited, naturally occurring deposits. Aggregate plays a critical roles in modern society and is used for the construction of almost all forms of development.

AGGREGATE: AGGREGATE AND THIS REVIEW

The aggregate industry is vital to Sturgeon County. It provides local employement opportunities, a reliable non-residential tax base, and provides important resources to support local development. This review is an excellent opportunity to evaluate ways to support local aggregate operations and to ensure sustainable development now and into the future.

As we grapple with the current economic situation, including restrictions to businesses caused by COVID-19 and unsteady oil prices, the County is exploring ways to diversify and strengthen the local economy.

Representatives of the aggregate industry are supportive of an opportunity to re-evaluate current bylaws to ensure safe and responsible development. Operators have expressed that they want to be good neighbours and look forward to working with the community to better understand their perspectives.

It is important to preserve and enhance resident quality of life, ensuring health and safety, and to protect the natural environment.

AGGREGATE: FUN FACTS & CONTEXT

The aggregate industry plays a huge role in Alberta – but just how much?

  • The aggregate industry employs thousands of Albertans and is a vital resource to other sectors like oil and gas.
  • According to Natural Resources Canada, aggregate production was valued at almost $935M in Alberta in 2015.
  • It is estimated that about 42 to 62M tonnes of aggregate is used annually in Alberta alone.
  • Every Albertan uses about 10-15 tonnes of aggregate per year – that means about one truckload per person.
  • The further away sand and gravel resources are to market, the more they cost. This is primarily due to transportation costs.
  • Utilizing aggregates that are closer to the market not only results in more affordable projects, but also translates to reduced Greenhouse Gas emissions and less wear and tear on local infrastructure, such as roads, during transporatation.
  • Many roads in the Edmonton region, including the Anthony Henday Drive, have been built with local aggregate that has helped keep the cost of these projects lower.

PART III: HAVE YOUR SAY

ENGAGE: HOW TO GET INVOLVED

Getting involved in this review and having your say is easy – we have many ways for you to engage.

Step 1: Get to Know Aggregate 
We have compiled educational materials that provide information about the aggregate industry, how aggregate is regulated, and aggregate in Sturgeon County. 

  • Our “Resource Extraction & Regulations Handbook” provides information about resource extraction. Whether you’re brand new to aggregate, or have a basic understanding about it already, this document will help you learn about aggregate and ensure you’re up to date before telling us what you think.  Get the Handbook
  • Our “Resource Extraction: Relevant Materials Library” is a listing of comprehensive reference materials. This is for those who want to delve deeper into aggregate information and regulations, to help you find what you’re looking for. This also includes all reference materials mentioned in the handbook.  Get the Library

Step 2: Tell Us What You Think

  • Take our Survey – This 20-minute survey asks you questions about your thoughts on the aggregate industry, methods of regulation, and your suggestions. The survey will be live from May 19 to June 17 at 5:00 PM. Take the Survey
  • Join a Virtual Coffee Talk – Our coffee talks will provide an opportunity to learn about aggregate and regulations “face-to-face” through a virtual setting. 
    • Coffee Talks: Half hour sessions - learn about the review through a quick presentation from experts on aggregate topics and ask your questions in a live conversation.  Advance sign up is required for all of these sessions - please email pandd@sturgeoncounty.ca or call 780-939-8275 to sign up. Coffee talks are offered in half hour sessions during the following dates and times:
      • Wednesday May 27, 5:00 - 8:00 PM
      • Thursday May 28, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
      • Wednesdsay June 03, 5:00 - 8:00 PM
      • Thursday June 04, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
      • Wednesday June 10, 5:00 - 8:00 PM
      • Friday June 12, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
      • NEW: Wednesday, June 16, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM (additional availability added to meet demand)

The personal information you provide is submitted as your expression of interest to participate in the virtual public engagement portion of the Resource Extraction Regulatory Review and is collected under the authority of Section 33 (c ) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.  If you have any questions about the collection and use of this information, please contact the Sturgeon County Access and Privacy Officer at 9613 – 100 Street, Morinville, Alberta, T8R 1L9 (780) 939.4321 or foip@sturgeoncounty.ca.





Step 3: Stay Tuned

Staying tuned will make sure you know when the reports are released, what the recommendations are, when the public hearing is (if required), and when final decisions are made. There are many ways to make sure you don’t miss anything.

  • Sign Up: You can sign up for regular updates by email or by postal mail (please email pandd@sturgeoncounty.ca or call us at 780-939-8275 or Toll Free 1-866-939-9303 Ext. 8275 for the postal mail option). Subscribe to our Mailing List
  • Keep Watching: You can also check our engagement webpage regularly – all updates will be posted under the 'Updates' tab on this page.

Your personal information provided will be used to process your request for email updates on the Resource Extraction Regulatory Review and is collected under the authority of Section 33(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.  If you have any questions about the collection and use of this information, please contact the Sturgeon County Access and Privacy Officer at 9613 - 100 Street, Morinville, Alberta, T8R 1L9 (780) 939.4321 or foip@sturgeoncounty.ca

 

PART IV: CONTACT US

Questions? Comments?

 Telephone: 780-939-8275 or Toll Free 1-866-939-9303 Ext. 8275

 Email: pandd@sturgeoncounty.ca
 

Stay Informed

Signup for updates

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Your personal information provided will be used to process your request for email updates on the Resource Extraction Regulatory Review and is collected under the authority of Section 33(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. If you have any questions about the collection and use of this information, please contact the Sturgeon County Access and Privacy Officer at 9613 - 100 Street, Morinville, Alberta, T8R 1L9 (780) 939.4321 or foip@sturgeoncounty.ca

Have a question about the project? Check below to see if your question is a commonly asked question. If you don’t see your question below, feel free to contact us and we will be happy to help! 


There is no site for this project – this is not a proposed pit being referred out for comment. Instead, this is a County-wide review of the rules that govern aggregate operations. While these rules apply across the County, they are most likely to be of interest to those near existing deposits. If you were within the mail out area, you are within 2km of an area that likely has deposits.


This map shows the existing deposit areas within Sturgeon County. Note, it is not possible to know where all deposits are until exploration is conducted on-site. Some deposits may exist outside of this area, and some areas indicated on the map may have scarce deposits. However, this map provides the best approximation of areas that are likely to have aggregate deposits, based on current data.


The proposed changes have not yet been decided upon. Public engagement, as well as other research, is being conducted prior to the proposed changes being drafted. Conducting due diligence prior to drafting the bylaws allows the proposed changes to be more well informed. There will be another opportunity for residents to provide feedback once the proposed changes have been developed – sign up for our email updates to stay tuned for proposed changes, public hearings, and more.


Sturgeon County has an annual program that monitors the groundwater levels and quality surrounding gravel extraction activities.

A copy of the report can be located here: 2019 Villeneuve-Calahoo Gravel Extration Area 2019 Groundwater Monitoring Report 


UPDATE [June 12, 2020]: Engagement Extended

Due to increased demand for our online "coffee talks," engagement has been extended and will now end at 5:00 PM on June 17, 2020. The online survey will close at this time. Additional coffee talk opportunities have been added on June 16th. Please see the "Have Your Say" tab for additional details on current engagement timelines.