Alberta municipality appeals regulator’s decision to accept coal exploration – by Bob Weber (CBC Calagary/Canadian Press -June 3, 2024)

The project has previously been denied by federal and provincial environmental reviews

An Alberta ranching community is fighting a planned hearing on proposed coal exploration in the Rocky Mountains, saying the province’s arm’s-length energy regulator shouldn’t have heeded a letter from its energy minister suggesting an application from Northback Holdings be accepted.

The information is contained in documents released last week by the Alberta Energy Regulator. They outline the Municipal District of Ranchland’s request to appeal the regulator’s ruling that Northback’s plans for Grassy Mountain in southwest Alberta are exempt from an order blocking such development.

“[Ranchland] submits that the [regulator] abdicated its decision-making responsibilities in reaching the decision by improperly fettering its discretion in the face of a non-binding letter from the minister of energy,” say the municipality’s court filings.

Northback has applied for three licences on Grassy Mountain near the community of Crowsnest Pass.

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