Smoke screen for Bill 36 amendments

It’s been rumoured that Bill C-6 is a smoke screen for Bill 36 amendments.

The information in the article below on Bill 36 is from the Canadian Association of Energy and Pipeline Landowner Associations (CAEPLA),

Bill 36 is the darkest horse of them all.  It is a model for central planning. It gives the Cabinet Minister sitting in the secrecy of the cabinet room, complete authority to make any decisions affecting your existing rights.

This means property rights, development rights, mining rights, forestry rights, mineral extraction rights, wind farms, etc. Section 11 of the Act clearly indicates that the Cabinet can even “extinguish” these rights altogether.

The Act removes a landowner’s right to compensation. And several sections of the Act remove a landowner’s access to the courts as a response to what is being done to him or her.

The thinking behind the Act is that the Cabinet will make a five-year plan, and in that plan they will describe what kinds of uses and activities are allowed and not allowed on all private land and public land in the province.

The Act enables the cabinet to set “social, economic and environmental policies” for all land in Alberta—including yours.

This is unprecedented legislation in a western democracy. It is not regional planning, but central planning, with power entirely held by a small group of politicians who would deny landowners access to the courts in response to what they would do to them. In other words, no appeal process. Plus compensation was restricted. In other words, no appeal process. Plus compensation was restricted.

Bill 36 Proposed Amendments

Bill 36 has resulted in a law called the Alberta Land Stewardship Act. It is a law that gives Cabinet the power to wipe out property rights in Alberta in a number of very specific areas.

The public outcry against Bill 36 has been so intense that amendments were introduced this spring. Land titles are now exempt, but the amended Bill still gives Cabinet—not the courts, but the politicians in Cabinet—the power to arbitrarily and unilaterally rescind water licences, development rights, grazing leases, oil and gas mineral leases, timber harvest agreements—all these sorts of things.

It also restricts landowners who feel they have been unfairly treated from access to the courts.

Bill 36, have been written in such a way that the politicians in Cabinet are above the law.

Bill 36 is unprecedented for a government in a western democracy. As of the writing of this document, we are not aware that any government in any genuine democracy has moved this much power into the Cabinet room.

In essence, Bill 36, and the amendments to Bill 36, have been written in such a way that the politicians in Cabinet are above the law. The Bill means Cabinet is the law because no one will ever be able to challenge some of its decisions in a court of law.

The way the proposed amendments are written, decisions made by Cabinet about an Albertan’s private property are not reviewable by the courts, unless Cabinet specifically says they are.

In Alberta law then, when Cabinet makes a planning decision about your land—on a broad range of issues—the starting point for you as a landowner is that there will be “no courts allowed unless Cabinet specifically says, ‘Okay, in this instance we’ll let the courts review our decision.’”

It doesn’t matter how unfairly you feel the government has been toward you.

About the author

ECA Review


  • Better to sell out asap, before cabinet makes a goof on your land and holds you responsible. Don’t you think the “powers that be” are much higher than anything on a national or international level and there’s no way to win.

  • We put cabinet members in to do what is best for the people. And what the majority of people wants. Not just do what they please.

  • Since when does Cabinet decide when a person has a cause of action? I am aghast and I can’t mentally manage the elements of the bill for the shock I’m feeling. It would seem to me that at the very least, this Bill would essentially banish some of our Charter rights and violate the laws of equity. The NDP are asking for a provincial revolution… no wait… not asking… begging for… and I don’t doubt that they’re about to get one… a big one!!! Shame on them!!!

    • Sadly, this wasn’t even the NDP’s bill. This was put in by Redford the Red dressed in Blue years ago. Very quietly and unassuming. And this was AFTER consultation with farmers and landowners to the opposite of what they had discussed. If only Danielle Smith had fought harder (or fought, idk) against it, Albertans wouldn’t be in this much of a pickle now.

  • I am confused by the this story. It doesn’t tell me anything that is new. Bill C-6, a federal bill that currently has does not exists, will change Bill 36 the Land Stewardship Act, a provincial Act. Not only does the story fail at making this connect or explain what the fear is, other than saying its a smoke screen. Additionally a federal bill cannot change a provincial bill. What exactly is this story tell us? That a bill passed by the PC government 6 years ago exists? A little slow on the draw.

    Aside from spreading misinformation and speculation, this story gives me 6 year old news. Why did you guys publish this?

    • Thank God for someone who actually sees through the bullshit! You, sir, are a blessing!

      1. This article is opinion based.
      2. Bill 36 was last amended in the Legislative Assembly during 2009-2010.
      3. Referenced article/website has no dates whatsoever, causing it to be horribly misleading.

      I really, truly wish that people would give their heads a shake and actually do their own research instead of swallowing this kind of garbage hook, line and sinker.

    • It gives Rotley an open book to the farmland as to what will be done with their land with no recourse for the land owner at all. She can force onto any land, what ever she wants there. This is how she is going to find places to put her 26 000 windmills with the huge foot prints. Taking away precious crop land if a farmer misbehaves. I saw that from the first that I found out about bill 36. What little crop land will exist after that, well…. That will be communal farms. Alberta as we know it, will be non-existent. BTW, this bill isn’t just for farm land, but urban property too.

  • I am so discussed by Rachel Notley and her uneducated cabinet ministers we need an election. She must have spent years planning how to destroy Alberta and its residents. Rachel Notley is an evil person. She must believe in communism. Another Hitler.
    We need her removed. I believe she needs to hold herself completely responsible for people loosing everything they have worked hard for. Watch suicide rates go higher and higher.

    • Get real Sandy, uneducated! Disgusted not discussed! Hitler was a fascist not communist! Suicide rates have raised anytime there is a down turn in the economy and around Christmas, to blame her is absolutely absured! Evil is what you are spouting! You need to educate yourself! Its amazing how ass backwards some peoples thinking is, neither Rachel nore the NDP are to blame for the current oil crisis, I live in Medicine Hat, we had oil companies leaving a year and a half ago, well before the election, but it must be Rachels fault as she had that kind of power before she was elected! What I dont understand is why people arent mad at the big oil companies they raped our province for years of its resources and made billions and when things get tough they throw their employees to the curb, the only thing they cared about was profit, and guess what most of them are still making a profit just not as large of one..,place your unwarrented hatred where it belongs ! on the oil conglomerates! Or the middle east oil producers who are trying to shut Canadas/ US oil industry down!

    • A. It’s “disgusted.” Not “discussed.”
      B. Hitler was a fascist. Not a communist.
      C. It’s “losing.” Not “loosing.”
      D. The price of oil and the downturn in the economy is 100% based on global factors and has nothing to do with the NDP.
      E. Bill 36 was conservative legislation enacted by the PC government in 2009 and is completely unrelated to Bill 6 which deals with farm safety.

    • Sandy, while I recognize and applaud your passion, it is important to note, that Hitler was not a communist. Stalin, however….

  • Bill 36 should never have been passed, however the conservative government was very careful to keep it quiet and not stir up too much public opposition. By the time it was common knowledge to most Alberta landowners, it was too late, the conservatives had been re-elected. Had the Wildrose party been a little louder in their opposition to it we might have had Danielle Smith for premier instead of Redford. As it is today it’s a very dangerous piece of legislation when we have an NDP government in control. I hope Albertans have learned something from this mess we are in. Have a listen to Brian Jean’s speech from Calgary last Wednesday. Unite the right and take back our province!


  • This is one persons opinion, people need to quit taking reports like this as gospel, do you think a cabinet minister can over rule the courts and laws of the land. Get real people God gave you a brain to use… try using it. The cabinet decisions can not over rule laws that have been passed, read the act for yourself, then make up your mind. There is a mentality in this province that the communists have taken over and all laws are gone, blame the NDP for everything.. it snowed today Damned Rachel Notely she is control of govt, with that power she must have control over the weather to! Damn is she good! Get real people, grow up getting tired of the back wood rhetoric. If you need to blame some one blame yourself, it was the conservatives who brought this in. DID YOU VOTE FOR THEM? Then damn you for screw
    ing this province over!

  • Uh, guys? Bill 36 was passed six years ago, by the Stelmach government. You know, we’re all one Google search and 2 clicks away from reading the actual content of every bill, amendment, and private members bill before the Legislature. Let’s take a minute or two to get a few facts on our side to make sure we’re getting our noses bent in the right direction.

  • This is such irresponsible journalism it’s unbelievable. I expect misinformation to be spread on Facebook, but for a “legitimate” newspaper to publish something like this is unconscionable. The Conservatives passed Bill 36 SIX YEARS AGO. This article very carefully fails to mention any political parties, but as the current party power, it’s clear the NDP are the ones most readers would assume are to blame. The deliberate misleading of the reader is absolutely shameful. You are supposed to be journalists, not ignorant internet trolls. Act like it! Have some integrity and practise responsible journalism.

  • Keep in mind, it was the CONservatives who passed Bill 36, with zero consultations. The WRP did nothing to protest or stop this Bill. So uniting the right isn’t going to help this repeal this Bill. It is what they want. Unfettered corporate control of our land with no recourse for the average Albertan to do anything about it. Where was the uproar and mass demonstrations for this Bill, that actually hurts farmers and ranchers? Because it was a CONservative Bill. No Ezra Levant or Lorne Gunter diatribes to whip up the masses to oppose the government. If you think uniting the right is going to do anything, it will. It will lead to even more stripping of rights and freedoms from Albertans.

  • Bill 36 was passed in 2009 by the PC government under the direction of Ted Morton.
    At the time it was passed the Alberta NDP was opposed to it.
    In fact the NDP had a petition to repeal Bill 36 at the time. Brian Mason stated “This is yet another example of the government’s own trend toward centralizing power in the political leadership of the province. Specifically I’m talking about the cabinet. There are so many decisions that have previously been made by other organizations in the province that are now being made at the cabinet level.”
    The bill was supported by Wildrose Alliance MLAs Rob Anderson and Heather Forsyth who voted for these bills while members of the PC caucus.
    Further, the “five year plans” mentioned in the article are not “five year plans” in the communist sense. There is a clause in the bill that calls for the objectives and policies of the regional authorities to be evaluated every five years to make sure they meet the goals of the act.
    Bill 6 is about farm safety. The two bills are unrelated.

  • The provincial government has had the right to expropriate land since the Alberta Act. The right to private property in Canada, and Alberta has never been absolute. Absolute property rights are not included in the BNA or the Charter. Neither is there an absolute right to compensation for government expropriation. And if you believe any party in Alberta is going to necessarily jump to change what are fundamental laws in Canada without a great deal of work, you are sadly mistaken.

    “Bill 36 is unprecedented for a government in a western democracy.”

    No, actually it’s not.

    Your implication of “central planning” is pure opinion, not journalism. And you don’t actually support the assertion with evidence from the act or even legal opinion on this PC created law. Central planning was not begun under the prior government. Your argument seems to amount to “the sky is falling.” As an editorial piece, this is lacking in so many ways not to mention credit to the actual writer. Is this fear-mongering the position of your entire organization or an individual writer? It’s irresponsible and inaccurate at best.

    Also, you failed to moderate a death threat against elected officials on your page sitting there since last night. “Lucifer” above, post 5.

    “Lucifer says:
    December 15, 2015 at 11:54 pm

    Get the body bags ready for the politicians behind these bills and actions”

    What sort of an operation are you running here?

  • This is beginning to sound more like a dictatorship all the time no Democracy here. Government for the people by the people.