Government of Alberta

FAQ-Land-Reclamation

The Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA) defines reclamation to mean any or all of the following:

  1. the removal of equipment or buildings or other structures or appurtenances;
  2. the decontamination of buildings or other structures or other appurtenances, or land or water;
  3. the stabilization, contouring, maintenance, conditioning or reconstruction of the surface of land; and
  4. any other procedure, operation or requirement specified in the regulations.

Where can I find information on land reclamation?

Alberta Environment protects the province's land resource base, under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA), by ensuring that land used for specified industrial activities (specified land) is developed and reclaimed in an environmentally sound manner. The Act requires operators to conserve and reclaim specified land and obtain a reclamation certificate. These measures require specified land is reclaimed to equivalent land capability as defined in the Conservation and Reclamation regulation.

What steps do I need to take to get a reclamation certificate for an upstream oil and gas site?

Alberta Environment's Upstream Oil and Gas Reclamation and Remediation Program ensures upstream well sites are returned to a productive state. When a site is no longer productive, the company who owns the well or pipeline applies for a reclamation certificate from Alberta Environment for private land or Alberta Sustainable Resource Development for public land. Each application must include an assessment of contamination and if contamination is present, a report detailing how contaminants were remediated and surface issues were addressed. If all standards are met, the company is issued a reclamation certificate.

Where do I find information on compliance for drilling waste disposal to obtain a reclamation certificate?

To address the diversity of drilling wastes and available information types, three compliance options have been developed. All three options are intended to deliver the same environmental results, which are based mainly on the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board 1996 Directive 50: Drilling Waste Management. Compliance Options One and Two exempt drilling waste disposal areas from a Phase 2 environmental site assessment (ESA). If the drilling waste disposal area does not meet the requirements specified in either of these options, a Phase 2 ESA (Compliance Option 3) must be conducted in the drilling waste disposal area. Assessing Drilling Waste Disposal Areas: Compliance Options for Reclamation Certification was developed to provide guidance for assessing drilling waste disposal areas for reclamation.

Where can I find the Code of Practice for Pits for sand and gravel operations?

The Code of Practice for Pits is available through the Queen's Printer or Alberta Environment's website.

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