Alberta's environment minister says Bighorn parks proposal will not go ahead

The UCP government will return to the North Saskatchewan regional planning process,

"It was the worst consultation process that I've seen, all of the First Nations communities in the area and all of the municipalities in the area have outright rejected the NDP's plan." - Jason Nixon



Alberta’s new environment minister Jason Nixon says he will scrap the previous NDP government’s proposed plan for protected areas in western Alberta.

Last November, the NDP announced eight new parks covering 4,000 square kilometres in what is known as Bighorn Country along the eastern edges of Banff and Jasper national parks.

Nixon says the current plan for the area is flawed and the United Conservative Party government will not go ahead with it.

Residents and area officials have raised concerns about how the project might affect oil and gas exploration, the forestry industry and off-road vehicle use.

Nixon says the province will return to the North Saskatchewan regional planning process to better understand economic and environmental implications for the area.

The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society says it is disappointed with the decision to cancel the proposal but is hopeful the government will change its mind.

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