Alberta starts promised review of AER

The Alberta government has begun a review of the Alberta Energy Regulator, a campaign promise of Premier Jason Kenney. It also has replaced AER board members with interim directors with oil and gas expertise.

The Alberta government has begun a review of the Alberta Energy Regulator, a campaign promise of Premier Jason Kenney.

It also has replaced AER board members with interim directors with oil and gas expertise.

Kenney, who became premier on Apr. 30, said he would begin a review of the AER within 180 days of taking office.

“We’ve seen the performance of the AER decline over the past few years despite hiring more staff,” said Energy Minister Sonya Savage. “It now takes four times longer than other jurisdictions like Texas to get a project approved in Alberta.”

The review, according to a press release, “will identify changes and enhancements to the AER’s mandate, governance, and system operations to ensure that Alberta remains a predictable place to invest and a world leader in responsible resource development.”

The review will include workshops with industry, municipal and professional associations, government departments, and indigenous groups; collaboration with governance and regulatory experts; and a dedicated web site.

The AER began life in 2013, consolidating energy regulatory functions of the former Energy Resources Conservation Board and environmental agencies.

New board members are Beverly Yee, currently deputy minister of environment and parks, chair; Grant Sprague, deputy minister of energy; David Goldie, who has oil and gas industry experience, including 7 years with Cenovus Energy; Georgette Habib, former member of the National Energy Board, Canada’s energy regulator; and Sherri Brillon, who worked for Encana for more than 30 years.

They will serve 9-month terms.

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