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All of this is on top of the Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction regulation, something that is already helping large emitters reduce their impact on the environment.
Protecting the riparian areas in the Eastern Slopes is another important priority — these are important headwaters for all Albertans and home to many important fish species, including our native trout. We’re working with and funding conservation groups such as Cows and Fish, who work to protect this key habitat. There is no question that Alberta’s government is committed to protecting ecologically sensitive areas across our province.
There is also misinformation about the changes to some definitions for our protected lands. What was once called “category 1” land will continue to be protected from development, including coal leasing and exploration, full stop. We will continue to protect critical watersheds, biodiversity, species at risk, as well as recreation and tourism activities along the Eastern Slopes.
As minister, and an avid outdoorsman, I am committed to helping protect and conserve Alberta’s public lands. These lands belong to Albertans. They’re for everyone to enjoy, safely and responsibly.
That’s why our policies and regulatory processes will guide the same kind of metallurgical coal development that we see in British Columbia, while protecting Alberta’s important environmental and recreational areas.
Alberta’s government is taking strong, co-ordinated action to keep our province’s backyard beautiful and accessible to all.