Jason Nixon

Minister Nixon: Alberta Crown Land Vision

Opinion

For those who call Alberta home, we are blessed to live in one of the most beautiful places on the planet. It doesn’t matter where you hang your hat in this great province. Whether you live in the south along the wide open prairies, the north under the huge boreal forest or near the iconic eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains, we all cherish our rich diversity of landscapes and our abundance of resources.

Our shared love for the land and our desire to protect it for our grandchildren and their children is what drives us. It also motivated our ancestors. In Alberta’s early days, the government set aside public lands to be managed by the Crown. Later, a parks system was also set aside to make sure all Albertans could enjoy the outdoors through recreation and camping while also protecting biodiversity. Together, parks and public lands – known as Crown lands – were administered under one system to be managed by the government for all Albertans and Indigenous peoples. Today, our Crown lands cover a vast amount of our province – about 60 per cent and are used for recreation, conservation and economic development.

Many existing policies were drafted with the notion in mind that specific areas of crown land only have one use. Crown land policies need to recognize the fact that the land owned by all Albertans is used for multiple purposes, included those listed above.

The Alberta Crown Land Vision is our way forward. This vision will guide our work toward creating a common-sense approach to Crown land management by finding the right balance, simplifying the system, making sure we focus on outcomes not processes, and support recreation in a way this province can afford and help us work as partners with communities, municipalities, and Indigenous peoples who use Crown land to practice Treaty rights.

This was our commitment to Albertans when we ran in 2019 and it remains our commitment.

It means understanding different perspectives to find the approach that works best for everyone. In some areas, a working landscape will be ideal with a mix of uses and various benefits. In other areas, conservation will be the main priority. We will use these diverse voices to update old, out-of-date Crown land rules that overlap with or duplicate other rules. We will update legislation and regulations that have accumulated over the years. We will simplify and make the rules easy to understand. And we will focus on outcomes – namely environmental protecrion, recreation and economic development – rather than further burdening Albertans with an overly administrative process that can get bogged down.

READ MORE: ‘Hypocritical:’ Alberta NDP call out UCP refusal to consult on parks changes

An important part of effectively managing Crown land is supporting sustainable outdoor recreation opportunities for Albertans to enjoy. To address the challenges of the increasing demand for recreation and trails in parks and on public land, we have committed to bring forward new measures, such as a Trails Act and fee framework, that will help deliver on those expectations. We want to hear from you about ways we can help make this happen.

You have the opportunity to share your ideas on how to support the development and sustainable use of trails, including how funding is generated and how dollars can be re-invested into recreation while also supporting education and enforcement activities.

You can also share your thoughts on how to strengthen partnerships with non-profit groups, businesses, municipalities and Indigenous communities, who have an important role in supporting fun, responsible and sustainable recreation on Crown land.

Please visit alberta.ca and search sustainable outdoor recreation engagement to participate and share your ideas.

Over the coming weeks and months, there will be other opportunities for Albertans to provide input on other Crown land initiatives. Together, we will create a clear understandable system for land use, support sustainable funding and partnerships for recreation, and reduce red tape so we can focus on achieving the outcomes Albertans expect.

– Submitted by Minister of Environment and Parks Jason Nixon

AlbertaOpinionUCP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(File photo)
UPDATE: Parts of Sylvan Lake under boil water advisory

Town staff are working to repair the break in the Sixty West area

The Sylvan Lake and Area Girl Guides were out selling cookies towards the end of March in the parking lot at the Sylvan Lake Walmart, where their fan-favourite mint chocolate cookies were available. This weekend all members of the Girl Guides will be pooling their resources for a cookie blitz at HJ Cody and Wal-Mart. (Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News)
Sylvan Lake Girl Guides holding cookie blitz this weekend

Girl Guides will set up a drive-thru cookie sale in two locations: HJ Cody and Wal-Mart

The Town of Sylvan Lake is looking at amending it Land Use Bylaw to allow businesses to add a patio to their business. Last summer Lakeshore Drive was closed to motor vehicles and businesses were allowed to expand their patios onto the sidewalks, the amended bylaw will not allow for patios to expand onto sidewalks or roadways, but Town staff are looking into further iniatives and ideas. (File Photo)
Sylvan Lake looking to expedite patio applications

The Town of Sylvan Lake is looking to amend its Land Use Bylaw in regards to commercial patios

A empty classroom is pictured at Eric Hamber Secondary school in Vancouver, B.C. Monday, March 23, 2020. The Alberta government says schools in Calgary will move to at-home learning starting Monday for students in grades 7 to 12.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Calgary schools to shift to at-home learning for grades 7 to 12 due to COVID-19

The change, due to COVID-19, is to last for two weeks

A man wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as he walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
COVID-19 spike in B.C. could overwhelm B.C. hospitals: modelling group

There are 397 people are in hospital due to the virus, surpassing a previous high of 374 seen in December

Ron Rauch and his wife Audrey are photographed at their home in Victoria, Friday, March 5, 2021. Their daughter Lisa Rauch died on Christmas Day 2019 when a tactical officer with the Victoria Police Department shot her in the back of the head with plastic bullets after barricading herself in a room that was on fire. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. families push for changes as special committee examines provincial Police Act

Solicitor General Mike Farnworth acknowledged the need to update the legislation last year

Major-General Dany Fortin, left, looks on as Minister of Public Services and Procurement Anita Anand provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020. The Public Health Agency of Canada has set aside up to $5 billion to pay for COVID-19 vaccines. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada negotiating contracts to secure COVID-19 booster shots for next year: Anand

Most of Canada’s current vaccine suppliers are already testing new versions against variants

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Health Canada headquarters in Ottawa. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)
Health Canada releases guidelines for reducing COVID-19 transmission at home

Improve indoor air quality by opening up your windows and doors, among other encouraged ventilation measures

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney updates media on measures taken to help with COVID-19, in Edmonton on Friday, March 20, 2020. Alberta is set to join three other provinces in exploring the feasibility of small modular reactors as a clean energy option. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Four provinces to sign memorandum of understanding to explore small nuclear reactors

Alberta government said in August that it would enter into the agreement to help diversify its energy sector

Sharis Carr, a nurse at the Aaron E. Henry Community Health Service Center in Clarksdale, Miss., holds a box containing doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday, April 7, 2021. The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in using the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
EXPLAINER: What’s known about COVID vaccines and rare clots

These are not typical blood clots – they’re weird in two ways

Most Read