Do You Have a Right to a Healthy Environment?

Janet Keeping – a lawyer, researcher and legal educator – will talk about whether Albertans have a right to a healthy environment. How might these rights influence oil and gas operations in our province?

In recent years there has been a growing awareness of the interdependence between our environment and our well-being.

With the rapid expansion of oil and gas development in Alberta, there has been an understandable rise in concern about the health implications of this development and its impact on rural life, farming and ranching.

This tension led the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board in 1999 to acknowledge that “disputes between residents and petroleum companies seem to be increasing in number and intensity.” In March 2003, The Chair of the EUB states: “Today confrontations between landowners and energy companies occur every day.”

How this tension can be resolved is no easy answer. However, a pre-eminent team of legal researchers affiliated with the University of Calgary have been studying this issue from a legal perspective. Their findings are ground breaking.

Come learn about the growing body of law that seeks to protect people from threats to their environment and their rural way of life. Join a province wide discussion about how our laws should balance the economic benefits of oil and gas development against human dignity, health and agriculture.

Speaker: Janet Keeping is a lawyer, researcher, legal educator and an expert on legal and policy issues relating to Canada’s natural resources. She is affiliated with the Canadian Institute of Resources Law and the Alberta Civil Liberties Research Centre through the University of Calgary.

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