Alberta’s enforcing fewer than one per cent of potential environmental violations in its oilsands region, according to a new report from independent researchers, published Tuesday.
Environmental groups Treeline Ecological Research and Global Forest Watch Canada examined records of thousands of environmental incidents associated with a set of oilsands projects from the Environment and Sustainable Resource Development ministry.
The (often incomplete) records indicate that there were over 4,000 “alleged contraventions” – possible violations of environmental regulations that have not been proven in court – in that area since 1996.
According to enforcement reports, in that same time period the ministry took 37 actions to enforce those regulations.
This means, the authors say, that only 0.9 per cent of violations are subject to any kind of enforcement, which could include fines, prosecution and warning letters.
Alberta Environment couldn’t tell Global News what percentage of incidents result in government orders or prosecutions. But…