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Update on Chapel Rock to Pincher Creek Transmission Project

Posted July 17, 2019

Dear LLG Members:

Update: Chapel Rock to Pincher Creek Transmission Project

Open houses were held by AltaLink two weeks ago with light attendance. Given the lack of critical information available from AltaLink regarding costs and route details for the three proposed routes, the Livingstone Landowners Group will continue to advocate that any development proven necessary must be compliant with the principles of the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan (SSRP). This regulatory plan was approved by government in 2018. It directs that future development should use existing infrastructure and developed corridors where possible, thus avoid fracturing intact and undisturbed lands. See SSRP attachment 1 and attachment 2.

LLG does not determine or advocate for a specific route option; however, will continue to oppose options that unnecessarily increase the industrial footprint on agricultural land or areas with high conservation or scenic value.

On behalf of our members, we continue to question Alberta Electrical Systems Operator (AESO) about the actual need for this project, which we consider to be unproven at this point. We also continue to monitor the AltaLink website for updates and announcements related to the transmission proposal that are expected this fall. We encourage interested or potentially impacted landowners to do the same.

Thank you,

Bill Trafford
President, LLG

Messages from the LLG to the MD of Pincher Creek Councillors

Posted: October 25, 2018

  • We are extremely concerned about the cumulative impact on the MD of continuing wind farm development and the associated transmission needs.
  • The MD should have a long-term development plan in place, that recognizes the SSRP and other land use policy and regulatory frameworks developed over the last decade, prior to making significant land use decisions.
  • MD is at risk of unintentionally sacrificing our extraordinarily beautiful and environmentally rich region to growing pressure for new wind development
  • There is an opportunity to flag these growing concerns by taking a firm stand to not approve any further wind development until this risk is resolved.
  • MD has the right to make decisions about development in this area – it cannot abdicate responsibility to outside agencies and governments.

Action requested:

  • Vote NO to Windy Point Wind Park Amendment Application
  • Consider the cumulative impact of continued electrical transmission and generation development in our already crowded municipality
  • Halt all further approvals of wind development applications until land use issues are assessed and an updated municipal development plan is in place

Key Supportin Facts

This region of Alberta represents the last 1% of the Great Northern Plains native grasslands and has been recognized in legislation as an environmentally sensitive region home to many endangered species.

The iconic views of the mountains and rangelands will be severely compromised by continued wind development and the associated transmission. All of the proposed transmission routes have major negative consequence including the potential for massive transmission infrastructure along the “Cowboy Trail” and/or Highway 3 as well as across pristine stretches of undeveloped areas.

AESO and AltaLink have confirmed the planned transmission development in our area is only needed to meet the government’s renewable energy target by 2030, there is no expected load growth or other driver.

If the transmission line is built it will double available transmission capacity in the region which in turn will drive more wind development under the government’s program and continue the industrial creep that irreversibly changes the landscape. Based on the anticipated growth trajectory more transmission with all the associated impacts would then likely be needed within 10 years.

Chapel Rock-to-Pincher Creek Transmission Development

Posted March 29, 2018

AltaLink Community Workshops:
April 10 & 11, 2018
Heritage Inn, Pincher Creek
6:30 - 9:30 p.m.

To attend a workshop in person, please register online by April 2, 2018.

If you are unable to attend in person, you can participate through an online workshop available April 12 until April 30 at

Public input wanted on Livingstone-Porcupine Hills

Posted March 29, 2018

Albertans are invited to provide their feedback on the draft Livingstone-Porcupine Hills Land Footprint and Recreation Management plans.

Land Use Planning initiative for the Porcupine Hills and Livingstone Range areas

December 20, 2017

Two months have passed since our last update on progress towards sound land use planning for the Porcupine Hills and Livingstone areas.  I hope you are wintering well.

Representatives of the Porcupine Hills Coalition and Livingstone Landowners Group met with planners from Alberta Environment and Parks in early December (meeting notes attached).  We encouraged them to stay the course on the Land Footprint Management Plan (LFMP) and the Recreation Management Plan (RMP) for the Porcupine Hills and Livingstone, including release of the plans for public consultation as soon as possible.

We were assured that government is staying the course although setting a definitive timeline is complicated by all the other pressures on the Minister and Cabinet.  Expectations are that a Public Land Use Zone (PLUZ) will be designated early in 2018 (January – February) accompanied by release of the LFMP and RMP for public consultation.  PLUZ designation is fundamental to implementing and enforcing the LFMP and RMP.

We have also been assured that there are no substantive changes to the LFMP since early 2017 when it was first ready for public consultation.  It represents a 75% reduction in linear footprint on the landscape.  The RMP continues to be consistent with direction provided by the Southwest Alberta Recreation Advisory Group (SARAG) when last reviewed by them in fall 2017.  The RMP will be released with the understanding that additional work is underway towards a final plan that will include a well-defined network of trails that will provide for a variety of high quality recreational experiences.  A Winter-Use Map will accompany the PLUZ initially, with a Summer-Use Map released following the public consultation.

Also in early December, the Alberta Government  released its review of scientific evidence for ecological responses of soil, vegetation, hydrology and wildlife to land use and human activities in the Castle region.  Many of the findings support the direction of land use planning in the Porcupine Hills and Livingstone.  The report is available at this link  The authors conclude:

Evidence suggests that limiting or reducing land use and human activities in the region is expected to decrease vegetation disturbance, lower rates of invasive species infiltration and expansion, improve the condition of headwater streams, increase the viability of westslope cutthroat trout and bull trout populations, and reduce the risk of grizzly bear mortality. Projected changes in hydro-climatic regimes in the region as the result of climate change will also influence some of these biological and ecological responses.”

Consultation on the LFMP and RMP will occur through community forums and on-line.  It is important that we all participate.  Your organizing group is working to develop some key points we may want to communicate once the plans are released for public consultation.  We will keep you posted.  Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or suggestions.

Meanwhile please take the opportunity whenever possible to communicate with provincial elected representatives and government staff  your support for staying the course on the land use planning for the Porcupine Hills and Livingstone area and for initiating public consultation on the LFMP and RMP as soon as possible.

Highway 3 – Sentinel to Pincher Station Functional Planning Study – Upgrading and Twinning Public Open House

Posted June 21, 2017

Tuesday, June 27, 2017 • Drop in any time between 4pm and 8pm
Bellevue MDM Community Centre
2802-222 St. Bellevue, AB

Alberta Transportation is undertaking a Functional Planning Study (FPS) for the upgrading and twinning of Highway 3 from east of Sentinel to west of Pincher Station.

The purpose of the study is to develop a staged approach to achieve the ultimate twinned and upgraded, four-lane highway along this section of Highway 3.

This study will build on earlier planning efforts, examine the needs of local road networks and address new environmental policies that have emerged since the completion of previous planning studies.

The goal of the project is to develop a functional plan that will:

  • Establish interim and ultimate layouts for a twinned highway complete with seven interchanges and two flyovers to manage highway and local access
  • Confirm an ultimate bypass route south of Coleman
  • Address environmental, geotechnical and historical considerations
  • Account for safety, current and future land uses and access management
  • Include an adjacent trail system to accommodate people who walk, bike and use other active transportation modes
  • Consider wildlife movement and possible crossing structures and safety measures throughout the corridor

Alberta Transportation is committed to collaborate with local municipalities, stakeholders and the public to develop the plan and evaluate the options. Stakeholder engagement is an important part of this process and gathering feedback from key stakeholders is critical.

Stakeholders and interested members of the public are invited to attend an initial open house to learn about the project and provide feedback. Members of the project team will be available to answer your questions and to receive your comments.

Please refer to the map on the following page to view the study area. For more information about the project, please visit or call the Project Manager, Firoz Kara (403-592-8170).

"In our backyard" with Brian Keating

Thank you for attending our 9 June event, "In our backyard" with Brian Keating! We look forward to hosting similar events in the future. If you have suggestions, please contact us.

Posted May 3, 2017

Friday, June 9, 2017 • 7:00 pm
Heritage Acres Farm Museum Barn
(Located NE of Highway #3 on secondary Highway 785, Pincher Creek)

Nurturing a bond with nature at home and around the world

An evening presentation by Brian Keating
Hosted by the Livingstone Landowners Group

Tickets $20/person

Brian Keating is an adventurer, expedition leader, and world traveller. He is also a naturalist, Honourary Conservation Advisor to the Calgary Zoo, and weekly guest on CBC Radio.

Join us for an entertaining and thought provoking evening as Brian takes us on a visual journey to his favourite wild places. He will bring the story home with his new National Geographic film, “Preserving the Last 1%” showcasing the Eastern Slopes of southwestern Alberta.

Tickets can be purchased at:

  • Learning Box, Pincher Creek
  • Pincher Creek Office Products
  • Obies, Lundbreck
  • Cinnamon Bear Bakery & Café, Coleman