Lethbridge City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to approve their support towards a proposed Alberta Coal Restriction Policy.
The two key principles in the Alberta Coal Restriction Policy, that would be effective November 15, 2021, are:
- No further coal exploration or development to be permitted on the Eastern Slopes of Alberta. There would no longer be categories within this area and instead there would be one area defined as the Eastern Slopes.
- Reclamation of lands disturbed by coal exploration activities by companies with coal exploration permits issued prior to February 8, 2021, must be reclaimed and restored no later than December 31, 2025.
"Our city, our agriculture and food production economy, tourism, recreation, human health and animal health may all be at significant risk due to coal mining activity," says Mayor Chris Spearman. "The headwaters and landscapes of the Eastern Slopes are essential to the future of Southwest Alberta and the City of Lethbridge."
The Government of Alberta has established the Coal Policy Committee that will lead comprehensive engagement and will consider feedback from Albertans, organization and municipalities.
Lethbridge City Council has submitted a letter to the Alberta Minister of Environment expressing concerns about the possible negative impacts coal mining could have on our city, water resources, agriculture and the landscapes our citizens access now and for future generations. The Mayor will also submit a letter stating this policy to the Coal Policy Committee.