To make room for urban development stimulated by oil sands development, the government of Alberta is cancelling 32 oil sands leases held by 10 companies around crowded Fort McMurray.
“The city, surrounded by crown land, needs a larger urban land base to accommodate new residential, commercial, and light industrial growth,” explains a backgrounder issued by Alberta Energy.
The province has allocated more than 55,000 acres in an area known as the Urban Development Subregion (UDS) for sale to the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, allowing Fort McMurray to grow to the east, south, and west.
The UDS covers more than twice the current area of the city. The government expects it to meet growth needs for more than 25 years.
Holders of the canceled leases will be compensated, Alberta Energy said.
Companies holding the affected leases are Value Creation Inc., Alberta Oil Sands Inc., Cenovus Energy Inc., Cavalier Land Ltd., E-T Energy Ltd., Grizzly Oil Sands ULC, Koch Oil Sands Operating ULC, Laricina Energy Ltd., Scott Land & Lease Ltd., and Suncor Energy Inc.