Municipalities and Environmental Assessment: Primer and Model Bylaw

 

Municipalities and Environmental Assessment: Primer and Model EA Bylaw

Alberta’s Municipalities and Environmental Assessment: A Primer and Model Bylaw for Alberta’s Municipalities

The Issue / Idea

Through regulation of private land uses and through local land use planning, municipalities play an essential role in the management and protection of Alberta’s environment. While Environmental assessment is a tool that enables better decision-making considering environmental, social, cultural and economic impacts of proposed land uses, municipalities may need support in developing supporting bylaws.

The Project

To enable municipalities to implement effective environmental assessment (EA) processes, the Environmental Law Centre developed a Model EA Bylaw. The Model EA Bylaw is accompanied by a primer which provides relevant background information.

The Model EA Bylaw provides a template for a municipal EA bylaw along with explanatory annotations. The template includes provisions addressing:

  1. objectives/purposes,
  2. application of the bylaw,
  3. process,
  4. prohibitions, and
  5. definitions.

The companion primer provides background information on:

  1. municipal authority over environmental matters,
  2. municipalities and EA, and
  3. the elements of a municipal EA bylaw.

Municipal Environmental Assessment: A Model Bylaw for Alberta’s Municipalities

Alberta’s Municipalities and Environmental Assessment: A Primer to the Model Bylaw

Organization

This project was undertaken by

The Environmental Law Centre

Status

Development of the primer and model bylaw began in the Fall of 2016 and was completed in

January 2018

Supporters

Max Bell Foundation

Anonymous Foundation

How Municipalities Apply Environmental Reserve in Alberta

 

How Municipalities Apply Environmental Reserve in Alberta: A White Paper

A discussion paper to inform municipal planners on how environmental reserve is applied in Alberta and observations on the implications of the new Conservation Reserve tool to ER

The Issue / Idea

How has environmental reserve been interpreted and applied in Alberta? And, did this change with the new conservation reserve tool enabled under the Municipal Government Act?

The Project

To respond to the issue, the Miistakis Institute distributed a survey to understand the municipal application of environmental reserve. The survey was distributed through APPI, AUMA and AAMDC.

Using the outcomes of the survey as a starting point, a discussion paper was developed to provide context for environmental reserve, what the intent is in the MGA, and comments on how it is interpreted and used by municipalities. The paper concludes with a comparison of the previous MGA and the modernized MGA environmental reserve policies, and observations on how the new conservation reserve tool may affect environmental reserve application by municipalities.


Environmental Reserve in Alberta: Discussion Paper

Conservation Reserve Resources

Conservation Reserves Summary
CR Municipal Survey – Summary

Organization

This project was undertaken by

The Miistakis Institute

Status

This research began in Fall 2016 and was completed in

October 2017

Supporters

Max Bell Foundation

Anonymous Foundation

Conservation Easement Guide for Municipalities

 

A Conservation Easement Guide for Municipalities

A practical how-to guide for municipalities considering holding conservation easements or establishing a conservation easement program

The Issue / Idea

Municipalities are eligible holders of conservation easements, but have very little information on how – and why – municipalities might go about using this tool.

The Project

To respond to the issue, the Miistakis Institute developed a ‘How To’ guide that informs municipalities about what conservation easements are, the municipal considerations for using this tool, details on what a conservation easement includes, and direction on how to create and administer a conservation easement program. The guide also comes with several Alberta-based resources and templates.

The sections of the guide are:

  • The Basics (What is a conservation easement?)
  • Conservation Easements and Municipalities (policy, planning, financial, and special considerations
  • Administration (preparing, creating, and stewarding a conservation easement and/or program)

Municipal Conservation Easement Guide

Municipal Conservation Easement Fact Sheets

Fact Sheet 1
10 Things Municipalities Should Know About CEs
Fact Sheet 2
Comparison of 3 Municipal Conservation Tools
Fact Sheet 3
Conservation Easement Sequence of Events
Fact Sheet 4
Overview of a Municipality’s Potential Costs Related to CEs

 

 

 

 

 

 

Municipal Conservation Easement Program Resources

(Click on any item to go to it!)

Conservation Easement Web Resources

Templates and Drafting Resources

Example Plans and Policies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Provincial Legislation

Support Organizations

(Did we miss something important? Let us know!)

Organization

This project was undertaken by

The Miistakis Institute

Status

This guide was released in

October 2017

Supporters

Max Bell Foundation

Anonymous Foundation

ALSA Tools Webinars

ALSA’s Conservation Tools for Municipalities: A Webinar Series

Informational webinars on conservation easements, transferable development credits, conservation offsets, and conservation directives

The Issue / Idea

The Alberta Land Stewardship Act has conservation and stewardship tools that could be of use to municipalities, but it is unclear how they would work for municipalities.

The Project

To respond to the issue, the Miistakis Institute organized a series of webinars on the four conservation and stewardship tools that are included in the Alberta Land Stewardship Act. Experts in each of the topics were asked to present a one-hour webinar, with each followed by a moderated Q&A session.

The webinars presented were:

Conservation Easements: Tuesday January 24, 2017
Kim Good, Legacy Land Trust Society

Transfer of Development Credits: Tuesday January 31, 2017
Guy Greenaway, Miistakis Institute

Conservation Directives: Tuesday February 7, 2017
Jason Unger, Environmental Law Centre

Conservation Offsets: Tuesday February 14, 2017
Dave Poulton, Poulton Environmental Strategies Inc. & the Alberta Association for Conservation Offsets

The webinars were well-received, with approximately 50 people attending each one. The follow-up evaluations saw the content rated as Excellent (9.5%), Very Good (57%), or Good (33%), with none rating the content as Poor or Fair.

Webinar Files

Conservation Easements (slide deck, video, resource)

Transfer of Development Credits (slide deck, video, resource)

Conservation Directives (slide deck, video, resource)

Conservation Offsets (slide deck, video, resource)

Organization

This project was undertaken by

The Miistakis Institute

Status

The webinars were presented in

January and February 2017

Supporters

Max Bell Foundation

Anonymous Foundation