Update on the Modernization of the Act, Regulation and Systems (MARS)

IOGC Quarterly Newsletter Volume VII, Issue 2

Reporting Period July 1, 2017 to September 30, 2017

IOGC and MARS Project Update:

During the preceding quarter, April 1st to June 30th, the Joint Technical Committee One (JTC-1) and the Indian Resource Council (IRC) reviewed and conditionally supported the proposed regulations; subject to a review of the wording of the resulting regulations for the agreed upon accommodations.  On August 31, 2017, Indian Oil and Gas Canada (IOGC) met with JTC-1 and presented an update on the 4th Consultation Draft Phase I Regulations.

First Nations have requested increased involvement in the following six accommodation areas:

  1. First Nations to receive a copy of well data;
  2. Mandatory assignment meeting between the First Nation and the new assignee;
  3. Consultation with Chief and Council in determining fair value for subsurface contract bonus;
  4. Negotiation of the initial terms of leases and permits and intermediate term of permits;
  5. Flexibility for First Nations to authorize a five-year continuance on ineligible lands;
  6. Flexibility for First Nations to amend drilling commitments and earning provisions.

A summary of recent events are as follows:

  • February 2017 - Government approval of the draft Phase I regulations was halted in order to address accommodations requested by the Blood Tribe with support in the form of resolutions from the Alberta Assembly of Treaty Chiefs passed on May 25, 2016 and from the IRC Annual General Meeting held on January 31, 2017.
  • March 2017 - First Nations requested accommodations to provide them with increased involvement in the management of their oil and gas resources in six specific areas.
  • April 2017 - Accommodations in six areas were agreed upon among the Blood Tribe, JTC-1, Indian Resource Council and IOGC.
  • May 2017 - IOGC worked with the regulatory drafters to incorporate these accommodations.
  • August 2017 - A new draft of the proposed Phase I regulations (4th Consultation Draft) was prepared for further consultation activities. IOGC mailed copies of the draft proposed Phase I regulations with information letters to all Chiefs and Councils of producing First Nations.
  • September 2017 – A subsequent mail-out of the 4th Consultation Draft Phase I regulations was sent to IOGC stakeholders (industry and other provincial government agencies), and an electronic version was posted on the First Nations Gazette website for public viewing and feedback:

To date, the following consultation drafts were distributed to First Nations, industry and provincial governments:

  • 1st Consultation Draft – February 2014;
  • 2nd Consultation Draft - May 2015;
  • 3rd Consultation Draft - distributed at the First Nation oil and gas symposium in Edmonton, AB in March 2016 and in Saskatoon, SK in April 2016;
  • 4th Consultation Draft – August 2017.

JTC-1 is conducting a fulsome legal and technical review of the 4th Consultation Draft regulations including the above accommodations. IOGC looks forward to receiving feedback from JTC-1 upon completion of their review. The IRC Board will also be going through a review process which we are hopeful will result in an endorsement to proceed toward the final steps in bringing the regulations into force.

These drafts are the culmination of many years of work between IOGC and the IRC. Working jointly since 2009, the IRC established the JTC-1, made up of technical representatives from key oil and gas producing First Nations, to assist in the development of the regulations.

IOGC continues to work on internal processes through the MARS project management steering committee as we continue to prepare for the implementation, administration and enforcement of the Indian Oil and Gas Act, 2009 and the Phase I regulations.  

For further information on IOGC or the MARS Project, please contact IOGC at:

Indian Oil and Gas Canada
100 – 9911 Chiila Blvd.
Tsuu T'ina AB  T2W 6H6
Phone: (403) 292-5625
Fax: (403) 292-5618
Email: aadnc.contactiogc.aandc@canada.ca

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