Brenda Heelan Powell, ELC Counsel, participates in AER’s Best-in-Class Regulator Initiative

Brenda Heelan Powell, ELC Counsel, participates in AER’s Best-in-Class Regulator Initiative

Brenda Heelan Powell, ELC Counsel, participates in AER’s Best-in-Class Regulator Initiative


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Brenda Heelan Powell, Staff Counsel at the Environmental Law Center (ELC), has been selected to participate in the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER)’s Best-in-Class Regulator Initiative.  This initiative is being conducted by the University of Pennsylvania through its Penn Program on Regulation, which will develop the tools and framework necessary for the AER to measure and track its performance against best-in-class regulator attributes globally. As the single regulator for Alberta’s energy industry, the AER plays a central role in the protection of Alberta’s natural resources and environment.   In order to be a best-in-class regulator, the AER must conduct itself in a transparent and accountable manner. As well, the AER should operate within a regulatory and policy framework that achieves overall sustainability and sets clear and measurable environmental outcomes.



The Environmental Law Centre (ELC) has been seeking strong and effective environmental laws since it was founded in 1982. The ELC is dedicated to providing credible, comprehensive and objective legal information regarding natural resources, energy and environmental law, policy and regulation in Alberta. The ELC’s mission is to educate and champion for strong laws and rights so all Albertans can enjoy clean water, clean air and a healthy environment. Our vision is a society where laws secure an environment that sustains current and future generations.

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  • Shirley Pickering
    Posted at 14:34h, 15 April Reply

    Please to here ELC will be participating in this process. AER has a long way to go in assuring the industry they regulate actually meets the higher performance standards for safety of community and environmental management, if the recent pipeline critical 2 sour gas leak in our area is an example of how an incident is handled from safety perspective. Worse yet is realization that the incident resulted from the use of sub-standard pipeline not appropriate for the product being shipped through the pipeline. The leak was the result of corrosion degraded pipeline that had only been in operation for two years. It needs to asked how this happened as does lack of accountability of a company to meet the requirements of their emergency plan. It is to be hoped that this new framework actually makes a difference at ground level where impacts happen and at the application level where sub-standard equipment servicing equipment of the industry still fall through cracks and leads to unnecessary damage and risk to communities and the environment.

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