2013-05-24 AWA Wilderness & Wildlife Defenders: Thanks and Next Steps Needed for Little Smoky Caribou
You have made a difference! In early May, the Alberta government deferred new mineral rights sales in the Little Smoky and A La Peche caribou ranges north of Jasper Park! Please take a minute to thank Ministers McQueen and Hughes and press them for the next on-the-ground habitat steps needed for these caribou to survive.
2013-05-15 AWA News Release: Time for Alberta Forest Industry to Stop Logging Critical Caribou Habitat
As the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA) marks its three year anniversary at the end of this week, companies are still logging in threatened Alberta caribou habitat. CBFA promised to accelerate protection of caribou and other boreal species at risk, but even though it was signed by most of Alberta’s forest industry, it has not delivered in Alberta. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) and Keepers of the Athabasca call on the forestry industry to stop logging in Alberta critical caribou habitat until sustainable populations are attained.
To be consistent with the Alberta government's recent decision to defer new mineral rights leases, AWA requests ESRD Minister McQueen also defer approval of new forestry plans in the Little Smoky and A La Peche caribou ranges until comprehensive caribou range plans are adopted by the Alberta government in 2014.
AWA's letter to Alberta Energy Minister Hughes thanking the Alberta government for deferring new mineral rights sales in the Little Smoky and A La Peche caribou ranges, and requesting measures for existing energy lease holders to maintain and restore caribou habitat there.
For the first time, Alberta is deferring the sale of new mineral rights across the entire range of two of its fifteen caribou herds until Cabinet first adopts range plans describing how critical habitat will be protected to recover those two populations. In a letter yesterday to Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA), Alberta Energy Minister Ken Hughes stated that effective immediately, new mineral rights sales will be halted across the Little Smoky and A La Peche herd ranges northeast of Jasper National Park until range plans are approved in 2014. AWA welcomes this decision by the Redford government as a good first step in the survival chances of these two caribou herds.
In a May 2, 2013 letter to Alberta WIlderness ASsociation, Alberta Energy Minster Ken Hughes states that effective immediately, new mineral rights sales will be halted across the Little Smoky and A La Peche caribou ranges north of Jasper National Park until Cabinet approves range plans in 2014.
Today the Alberta government will once again violate its own caribou policy and the federal caribou recovery strategy by auctioning yet more new oil and gas leases in the ranges of threatened Alberta caribou, including in the Little Smoky range that is more than 95% disturbed. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) calls on the government to cease this irresponsible energy development approach and act on its promises to maintain and restore caribou habitat.
AWA's letter to Parks Canada supporting their proposal to restrict winter recreational access, from November through the end of February, within the habitat of three sensitive Jasper National Park caribou populations. AWA also urges reduced winter access into the Maligne caribou range and preventing ski hill expansion into caribou range.
The Alberta government is selling new petroleum and natural gas lease sales in five threatened caribou range areas in March 2013, including in an auction that closes today, despite already unacceptably high industrial disturbance of caribou habitat in those areas. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) calls on the Alberta government to cease new surface leasing and new disturbance permits in Alberta caribou ranges and to make good on its promises to maintain and restore caribou habitat.
2013-02-06 Open Letter to AB Energy Minister: Defer New Leases within Threatened Little Smoky Caribou Range
An open letter to Alberta Minister of Energy Ken Hughes, requesting deferral of planned energy lease sales as a step towards responsible habitat management for this caribou population at imminent risk of local extinction.
2013-02-06 AWA Wilderness & Wildlife Defenders: Request AB Energy Minister Defer New Leases in Threatened Little Smoky Caribou Range
In violation of Alberta’s 2011 woodland caribou policy that places an immediate priority on maintaining caribou habitat, Alberta Energy plans auctions of new oil and gas leases within the Little Smoky caribou range in west central Alberta on February 7, March 7 and April 25, 2013. Please take a moment to write Energy Minister Ken Hughes to request these lease sales be deferred until habitat can be restored for the Little Smoky caribou population, which is at imminent risk of local extinction.
In violation of Alberta’s 2011 woodland caribou policy that places an immediate priority on maintaining caribou habitat, Alberta Energy plans auctions of new oil and gas leases within the Little Smoky caribou range on February 7, March 7 and April 25, 2013. This herd’s habitat is already 95% disturbed, according to Environment Canada. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) has issued an open letter to Alberta’s Energy Minister urging him to defer these lease sales as a step towards responsible habitat management for this herd at imminent risk of local extinction.
A new road built in the last several weeks by Tourmaline Oil Corp. within critical habitat of the threatened Little Smoky caribou herd in west central Alberta shows the Alberta government is not following its own 2011 caribou policy. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) calls on the Alberta government to protect threatened caribou in this and other ranges in Alberta.
Wild Lands Advocate update, August 2012, by Nigel Douglas. Report on a caribou plan proposed by the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation that would see the establishment of two "zones" - a Protection Zone and a Stewardship Zone - within ACFN homelands in northeastern Alberta aimed at the protection and restoration of Caribou habitat.
Wild Lands Advocate update, August 2012, by Nigel Douglas. A recently-released Parks Canada report reveals the findings that Canadians support renewed efforts to recover threatened caribou in the Rocky Mountain National Parks, even if that means some compromises have to be made.
On September 28, 2012 the Canadian government informed the Federal Court that it will again delay releasing its mandatory final boreal woodland caribou recovery strategy that is already five years overdue. The delay is particularly harmful for caribou populations in Alberta that face extinction due to habitat disturbance from intensive oilsands and other industrial activity.
September 28, 2012 letter from federal Justice Department to Federal Court stating that release of the final boreal woodland caribou recovery strategy will be further delayed.
2012-08-22 AWA News Release: Lower Athabasca Plan: Significant Progress, but Wildlife Await Land Disturbance Plan Inside Oil Sands Area
The Lower Athabasca regional plan for northeast Alberta released today is a significant step forward in managing cumulative development effects, but regrettably misses many important and promised pieces for wildlife. Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) congratulates the Alberta government for establishing air and water management frameworks and significant new Wildland Parks outside the large Oil Sands Area. AWA looks forward to working with the Redford government towards completion of promised land management pieces inside the Oil Sands Area to address overwhelming multiple pressures on wildlife there.
After missing a mandatory legal deadline to submit a draft recovery strategy for woodland caribou by four years, the federal government has also failed to produce a final recovery strategy for woodland caribou on time. Environment Minister Peter Kent will delay release of the long-awaited final woodland caribou recovery strategy until Sept. 30 — that is, unless he postpones its release again — federal lawyers announced Monday, sparking outrage among First Nations and environmental groups trying to secure protections for the iconic species.
August 13, 2012 letter from federal Justice Department to lawyers for First Nations and ENGOs release of the final boreal woodland caribou recovery strategy will be further delayed.