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AWC Board Meeting
AWC-WPAC, Events, and Governance | September 2021

Ashley Johnson, Science and Education Coordinator 

On September 16th we held an online board meeting. While we had hoped to hold a hybrid event, the current state of events pushed us into holding the meeting over zoom.

The meeting started off with a call to order from our president, Dan Moore. It was followed by a land acknowledgement and a prayer led by Treaty 8 Elder and Board Member, Cleo Reese. She spoke the prayer first in English and then in Cree.

We then proceeded with a round of introductions. I met most of the board members for the first time. It was really great to meet everyone and hear some of what they’ve been up to. The icebreaker question was “what was your favourite place this summer?”. We’d like to hear what your favourite place was this summer! Let us know in the comments on this post. For me, it was the Beaver Boardwalk in Hinton, which I mentioned in the site selection trip post.

Following the introductions we had a presentation from Andre Asselin, the executive director of the Alberta Water Council. He discussed the Water for Life Implementation review. That review provided several recommendations on how to improve strategy implementation. My main takeaway from those recommendations was that the Alberta Water Council will be working towards developing standardized Water for Life implementation performance indicators. The goal is to create informative indicators that will be able to come together into a unified management framework across all levels, including industry, WPACs, landowners, and other stakeholders.

Our Board Member Janice Linehan then gave an informative presentation on oil sands monitoring. She provided an overview of the recent history of oil sands monitoring and the various efforts and government initiatives that have emerged over the years. To learn more about different oil sands monitoring efforts, we have started to add some to our resources section. We will continually be updating that section in the future.

We then heard from our Board Member Abdi Siad-Omar, who provided updates from Alberta Environment and Parks. From his presentation I learned that AEP is planning on releasing 11 sub-regional plans in the next 4 years. Two of those sub-regional plans will be at least partially within the Athabasca Watershed. Those two plans in the works are the Berland sub-regional plan (which will have a focus on maintaining caribou habitat) and the Wandering River sub-regional plan.

Sarah and I were up next on the presentation docket. We provided an overview of what us staff have been up to with regards to our ongoing projects. If you’re curious about what those are, check out an overview of our Pembina project here, and our Upper Athabasca Biomonitoring project here. As for what else we’ve been up to, check out some of our recent blog posts!

Petra then took over with some administrative business, and the meeting wrapped up fairly quickly!