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Despite opposition, the Alberta government continues to work in favour of coal mine development. In the fall of 2019, the province announced its decision to appeal the Impact Assessment Act — a bill that calls for the evaluation of new coal mines and oil sands projects against the impacts on public health, the environment, and the economy. 

While Albertan leadership claims the bill is unconstitutional, the world and Canadians alike know that coal-burning must stop if a climate catastrophe and the destruction of nature are to be averted. 

Alberta’s Coalspur Vista coal mine expansion near Jasper National Park alone would generate 33 million tonnes of carbon pollution and cause irreversible effects on Canada’s endangered Rainbow Trout, threatened Bull Trout, and nine other migratory bird species at risk.

Image of Jasper National Park

Other projects like Teck’s proposed 2500-hectare Castle Mountain mine expansion would destroy critical habitat for the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep and add significantly more pollutants, including Selenium, to B.C.’s Elk River watershed. 

Despite the consequences, at least seven new mines are proposed for the mountains and foothills of Alberta and British Columbia to produce coal for export to Asia.

How you can get involved 

Nature Canada is intervening in the Court of Appeal hearings this week to say the Impact Assessment Act is valid and in line with Canada’s commitment to phase out coal-fired electricity generation by 2030.

For ecological sustainability and the well-being of Canadians, it’s imperative that we minimize, if not eradicate, these sources of pollution and devastation to nature through strict evaluation and regulation. 

Sign up for updates to stay on top of Nature Canada’s intervention with this case. Together we can ensure that the destructive impacts of proposed coal mines on nature and climate are fully understood through federal public hearings. 

Federal leadership and scientific expertise in assessing coal and oil and gas development in public hearings are essential if Canada is to achieve our international commitments to reduce carbon pollution and conserve biodiversity. 

You can count on Nature Canada to speak for nature and nature lovers like you!

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