Oil Sands Sustainable Development Secretariat

The Oil Sands Sustainable Development Secretariat (Secretariat) (2010- 2016) collaborated with ministries, industry, communities and stakeholders to address the social, infrastructure, environmental and economic impacts of rapid growth issues in the oil sands regions of Alberta.

Image of oil sands in white gloves

The Comprehensive Regional Infrastructure Sustainability Plans (CRISP) for Alberta’s three oil sands regions were a primary focus for the Secretariat.

Cold Lake Oil Sands Areaexternal link icon (CLOSA) 2011
Athabasca Oil Sands Area (2011) and
Peace River Oil Sands Area (2012)

 The Secretariat worked with ministries, other governments and stakeholders to obtain an integrated approach to policy, information sharing and communication.
(Photo: Courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.)

Aerial view of Syncrude in Fort MacMurray

The Alberta Professional Planners Institute (APPI) and Canadian Institute of Planners (CPI) conference recognized the AOSA CRISP for exemplary planning. The APPI Award of Planning Meritexternal link icon under the category of Special Study was awarded at the conference held in Banff from October 9 to 12, 2012. APPI represents professional planners in Alberta, North West Territories and Nunavut.                                                                 (Photo: Courtesy of Syncrude Canada Ltd.)

Development of the CRISPs were identified as part of Responsible Actions: A Plan for Alberta's Oil SandsPDF icon external link icon (3MB)ISBN 978-0-7785-8054-6 , which outlined an integrated approach to address the economic, social and environmental challenges and opportunities in the oil sands regions. Released in 2009, the plan set a 20-year vision to make Alberta a global leader in the innovative, responsible, and collaborative development of oil sands.

Map of UDSR region A key activity was the Urban Development Sub-region (UDSR) announcedexternal link icon in 2013, the Alberta Government released more than 55,000 acres of Crown Land for urban expansion in Fort McMurray.

The Province's UDSR policy is outlined in Information Letter 2013-27PDF icon .

Leases in the UDSR not compatible with urban development, which includes all oil sands leases and incompatible surface dispositions, will be cancelled. Lessees will be compensated in accordance with existing legislation. The Government of Alberta sought input on the UDSR boundary from local First Nations and stakeholders, including industry and the general public.

Alberta Energy's decision to compensate and cancel UDSR crown oil sands mineral rights agreements under the Mineral Rights Compensation Regulationexternal link icon was made by the Minister of Energy. The secretariat closed late in 2016.

Related Information;