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ALSA Does Not Extinguish Property Rights

14 Feb 2011

 

An important clarification about the Alberta Land Stewardship Act (ALSA) and property rights by University of Calgary law professor Nigel Bankes has confirmed that ALSA does not extinguish property rights. Professor Bankes points out that it is unreasonable to interpret ALSA as providing an alternative means of property expropriation, and that the courts would not uphold such an interpretation. (His February 11 posting is at http://ablawg.ca/)

Alberta Wilderness Association (AWA) is reassured with Nigel Bankes' clarification of the law.  "AWA has concerns about the extent of Ministerial discretion in ALSA," states Carolyn Campbell, AWA Conservation Specialist. "But we think this legal analysis by Nigel Bankes allays concerns that ALSA will affect landowners’ land titles. It is important that recent efforts by the government to improve the cumulative effects management of our land, water and air go forward." 

As well as explaining why ALSA does not extinguish property rights, Nigel Bankes writes: "ALSA … is concerned above all else with landscape level planning, cumulative effects management and establishing limits and thresholds to growth and development - all as a means to foster the maintenance of healthy ecosystems and a vibrant economy. In order to do this the legislation needs to break down departmental silos within government and provide the authority to restrict the level of activities that can be carried out on the landscape."

AWA believes the goals of cumulative effects management are vital elements in the long term protection of biodiversity and in the health of our province and all Albertans. 

For more information:

Carolyn Campbell, AWA Conservation Specialist, (403) 283-2025

Posted February 14, 2011 by AEN

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