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Reclamation Liability Reduction Program Being Developed

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Release Date: October 19, 2023

The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) is developing a program aimed at reflecting industry’s site closure activities by allowing licensees to request a temporary reduction of the liability values used in the AER’s liability management programs once reclamation work has been completed but before a reclamation certificate is issued under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA). Once closure and reclamation activities for a site have been completed, it may take several years before vegetation is fully established and the site becomes eligible for a reclamation certificate. As such, the site may be eligible for a reduction in liability value.

The reduction would only be requested when all abandonment, remediation, and reclamation work has been completed and the only thing left to do is to re-establish vegetative cover. The program will apply to wells and facilities licensed under Directive 056: Energy Development Applications and Schedules. The liability value reduction is expected to be valid for five years or until a reclamation certificate is obtained, whichever happens first. The AER is currently developing a OneStop submission process for this program, with an anticipated release in spring 2024. Information about this proposed program is being shared to provide licensees with the opportunity to review reclamation progress at their sites in preparation for the upcoming submission process.

Further information about this program, including specifications for submitting a request, liability value reduction amounts, submission process, review timelines, and compliance assurance, is expected later this year. General questions about the program can be directed to @email