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Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

News Release

Environment Minister Announces Decision on Environmental Assessment of Highway 58 Extension-Fox Lake Access Road in Northern Alberta

OTTAWA, April 28, 2008 - Canada's Environment Minister, John Baird, announced today that the proposed Highway 58 Extension-Fox Lake Access Road project in Northern Alberta is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects with the implementation of the mitigation measures outlined in the comprehensive study report.

The Minister has determined that the project does not require further assessment by a review panel or a mediator under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and has referred it back to the responsible authorities, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) and the Parks Canada Agency (PCA), for appropriate action.

The Minister based his decision on the following information:

  • the comprehensive study report, including the conclusions and recommendations, submitted by INAC and PCA;
  • the results of a 30-day public comment period; and
  • the implementation of the proposed mitigation measures.

The proponent, Little Red River Cree Nation, is planning to upgrade the winter access roads to the Fox Lake and Garden River communities in Northern Alberta to all-weather access roads. The project consists of the following: the upgrade of 57.8 km of existing summer/winter roads to all-season access roads; the removal of existing watercourse structures and the construction and operation of one major span bridge, four span bridge structures, six bridge sized culvert structures and 14 non-bridge sized culvert structures; the construction and operation of 7.0 km of new all-season access road and; the reclamation of approximately 28.85 ha of existing summer/winter road corridors. The construction of the project will take three years, followed by operation.

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The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency administers the federal environmental assessment process, which identifies the environmental effects of proposed projects and measures to address those effects, in support of sustainable development.

Media may contact:

Nicholas Girard
Senior Communications Advisor
Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
Tel.: 613-957-0958