The Right to Public Participation in Resources and Environmental Decision-Making in Alberta


  • Shaun Fluker



This article examines the right to public participation in resources and environmental decisionmaking in Alberta. The only reasonable conclusion
from the analysis in the paper is that there is currently no legal right to public participation in resources andenvironmental project decision-making in Alberta.
Project decision-makers have no obligation to hear organized public interest groups or members of thepublic at large who are unable to demonstrate how aproject may personally affect them. The public interest character of resource development decisions has thus far had no identifiable impact on the consideration of participatory rights by Alberta courts. Resources and environmental project decision-making is thus not necessarily subject to public scrutiny and it becomes
more difficult to hold officials exercising public power over resource development legally accountable for their actions. The role of public participation as an
accepted means to influence the exercise of state power over matters concerning the public interest deserves more critical and focused attention from Alberta