Our Story

The Environmental Law Centre: Our Story

On March 15th, 1982, in the middle of Edmonton’s worst blizzard of the year, the Environmental Law Centre (ELC) opened its doors to the world. This came at a critical time in Canadian history, when there was a rapid increase in resource exploitation with little regard for social or environmental costs. It was at this pivotal moment that the ELC jumped into the conversation and we’ve been doing so ever since.


The ELC’s driving concern since its inception is that if the law was fully exercised with citizen awareness, environmental degradation would be a thing of the past and there would be a balance between people, planet and profits.


Through education and awareness, legal research services
and other programs, the Environmental Law Centre is educating Albertans to
be champions for the protection of our environment and society.



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.


      • We provide objective information and respected advice on changing environmental legislation and regulations; we are one of the only charities in Alberta that provide this to Albertans.
      • We have provided advice and education to people who have questions about a broad range of topics including pesticide use and conserving greenspace in cities, impacts of gravel pits, saving agricultural land or addressing the impacts of the oilsands.
      • We help community groups understand and use legal tools to advance their concerns.
      • We work with policy-makers at all levels of government to create better processes for making environmental decisions.
      • We promote cutting-edge legislation and support the right of all Albertans to have a say in their future.


In order to make the law and legal processes protect the environment, Albertans need accurate environmental law information and an understanding of the effects of policy and development. Your support makes this possible.


We are here to help you understand how laws and legal tools can be used to protect the environment.


To find out how you can be a part of our story and the story of those fighting for more accountability in our environmental legislation, support the Environmental Law Centre today.




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