First Nations Consultation - Lands
This summary has been prepared to provide direction to proponents in the delegated procedural aspects of proponent-led consultation.
The procedures form and letter templates identified below must be used to obtain consultation direction from ESRD Areas.
ESRD Area contact information is available from the document First Nations Consultation Contacts – Lands Division Only,
In support of continuous improvement, the process and related form and letter outlined below will be reviewed periodically
and may be amended.
These procedures are consistent with Alberta's First Nations Consultation Policy and Guidelines on Land Management and
Resource Development and are intended to be used as a supplement to the Guidelines, not to replace them.
New Features in FNC Database - Effective March 25, 2013
The FNC database includes the following new features effective March 25, 2013:
- The Project Name has been included in the Search Result to help users find and identify FNC Case files.
- The ability for companies to inherit FNC Case files and FNC decisions from amalgamated companies. This allows companies to make disposition applications using existing amalgamated company FNC decisions or the ability to utilize existing work conducted on FNC Case files that do not have a FNC adequacy decision yet.
- If your company chooses to use the amalgamated companies existing CASE File up to an Adequacy decision, your company will need to notify the First Nations identified within that FNC Case file that a company change has occurred. FNC Approval Specialists will require this additional notification prior to rendering a decision of Adequacy on any amalgamated company FNC Case files.
When a company accesses their listed FNCs through the identification of their Client ID, any inherited FNC Case files will be identified within the search screen and any amalgamated FNC Case files will be identified with a Yes indicator and the amalgamation date.
Be advised that should a company choose to utilize an inherited FNC decision or FNC Case file towards an adequacy decision, they will, as a company, assume any agreements and will be held to any commitments made to any First Nation or ESRD that were made by the prior company.
In addition, should the company wish to acquire any documents submitted on behalf of the amalgamated company, you must retrieve these from the amalgamated company. ESRD will not retrieve or provide your company with any documents submitted to the FNC Case file from the amalgamated company.
Revisions to First Nations Consultation Procedures for Lands – Effective Sep 7, 2012
Effective September 7, 2012, Environment and Sustainable Resource Development (ERSD) will enhance the Electronic Dispositions
System (EDS) by implementing a new on-line service to automate the First Nations Consultation process FNC 2.0.
The enhanced EDS will:
- Create FNC files
- Receive FNC Assessment Requests
- Manage documents
- Notify clients when file has been processed
- Users may save work in progress and return to complete
- Client IDs for security management
At the time of application through EDS for new and amended dispositions, the proponent will only be required to provide:
- The FNC Number – for consultation decisions completed under previous FNC processes, and
- The FNC Activity Number - for consultation decisions completed under the new FNC 2.0 process.
EDS will validate that the FNC number provided belongs to the same company that is applying, validates the disposition type
and validates that a decision has been issued to allow the processing of the disposition application or amendment.
- For FNC files currently in progress, the proponent can manage these files as per the previous procedures, however, when
making an application or amendment for a disposition, the proponent needs to identify the initial FNC number.
- For paper applications and amendments, all forms will be updated to include a space for entering of the FNC number which
will be validated by Disposition Services staff.
- EDS will also be enhanced for both the Environmental Field Report (EFR) and the Enhanced Approval Process (EAP) modules
with an FNC input box so proponents will have the opportunity to include the FNC number if consultation is completed.
- Existing FNC numbers were generated to have a three letter identifier by Area such as CWR or PCE (representing the regional
office, example Clearwater or Peace) and a year number then 4 random numbers, for example CWR20120001. The new FNC numbers
are similar but will now be represented as “FNC” always with a year identifier and 4 random numbers, for example FNC20120001.
- EDS First Nations Consultation User Manual
Procedural Steps for Consultation with First Nations
Step One: Electronic Disposition System Portal
- Login to EDS
- Proponents will need a Client ID. To apply for an ID, see the LSAS Client ID Application form at:
- Proponents will need an account with EDS. To request an EDS account, see the EDS, LAT &PCS User ID Request Form
- To access related Lands Forms, see:
On the EDS Main Menu page Option 5 “First Nations Consultation Submissions” will enable the proponent to:
- Create a request for a First Nations Assessment
- Respond to a Pre-Consultation Assessment
- View completed assessments
- Cancel a First Nations Consultation (FNC) file
For more information, please refer to Section 2.0 – EDS Main Menu Page, on page 7 of the EDS First Nations Consultation
User Manual at:
NOTE: A proponent may have multiple agents working within EDS on their behalf. The last recorded user will
receive the next e-mail for the FNC case files. All e-mailed documents will also be filed within each FNC case file.
Step Two: Assessment Request
Proponents create a new FNC case page (Assessment Request) and complete it.
Information required by proponent to be attached to the submission:
- The scope of the operation (based on disposition and purpose type)
- Area or Linear distance of the project
- Maps – detailed sketches of each activity and overall project plans with ATS legal locations representing the project
- Polygon activities (ex MSL, SML, etc.): site plan
- Linear activities (ex. LOC, PLA, etc.): sketch plan including routing and distance
- To and From ATS legal locations - To attain the To and From
locations, the proponent should draw a box around the proposed project. The NW corner of the box represents the To
location and the SE corner of the box represents the From location. The To and From
locations are for internal ESRD use which identify the ESRD Area associated with the Assessment Request. The maps that the
proponent provides will be used to represent the detailed ATS legal locations of the proposed project.
- Documentation of previous First Nations Consultation efforts related to the specific FNC activities within the current
Assessment Request to prove prior consultation has been completed.
- Further description of activities in the Client Remarks section to better advise ESRD reviewers of the FNC activity(s).
For more information, refer to Section 3.5 - Create New FNC Case Page, on page 13 of the EDS First Nations Consultation
User Manual at:
Proponents submit the completed Assessment Request which will prompt EDS to alert the appropriate ESRD contact of the FNC case
file for review.
Once the proponent has submitted the Assessment Request, the proponent will not be able to add new activities or edit the
FNC case file until ESRD reviews the case file and provides a recommendation.
ESRD’s direction and decisions will be based on the activities submitted.
- The Assessment Request will need to be complete and accurate prior to submission. Any missing details or unclear information
will prompt ESRD to place the review on hold. ESRD will request additional information or clarification from the proponent
in order to continue their assessment.
- If the corporate status should change during the consultation process on lands associated with this Assessment Request,
a new Assessment Request may have to be resubmitted.
For more information, refer to Section 3.9: FNC Save/Submit Confirmation Page, on page 19 of the EDS First Nations Consultation
User Manual at:
Step Three: Pre-Consultation Assessment Form
- ESRD will determine the requirement for consultation and provide the proponent with a Pre-Consultation Assessment. The
Pre-Consultation Assessment will assess the level of consultation required and will advise the proponent which First Nation(s)
to consult with.
- If consultation is not required, the assessment will indicate the following:
No Consultation Required
- If consultation has been previously completed and assessed as adequate,
ESRD may indicate on the assessment: Already Deemed Adequate
- If consultation is required, the assessment will indicate one of the following
and list which First Nations need to be consulted:
- Notification with no follow-up
- This type of consultation requires a 21-day response period following verifiable delivery of Notice Letter and package.
If the First Nation does Not reply within the 21-day period, the proponent is not required to contact the identified First
- If the First Nation replies within the 21-day period, then further consultation may be required which
may exceed the 21-day period.
- When the proponent believes consultation is complete, the proponent sends a copy of the ROC log to the First Nation to
review for errors and omissions.
- Consultation will follow the direction set out in Alberta’s First Nations Consultation Guidelines on Land Management
and Resource Development – November 14, 2007.
- Notification with follow-up
- This type of consultation requires a 21-day response period following verifiable delivery of Notice Letter and package. The proponent is expected to make at least two (2)
additional attempts to contact the identified First Nation following verifiable delivery of Notice Letter and package.
- A response from the First Nation is expected within the 21-day response period. These additional attempts should be around
the mid-point and at the end of the response period. If the First Nation replies within the 21-day period, then further
consultation may be required which may exceed the 21-day period.
- Consultation will follow the direction set out in Alberta’s First Nations Consultation Guidelines on Land Management
and Resource Development – November 14, 2007.
- More Extensive Consultation
- This type of consultation will be subject to a consultation plan.
- Consultation plan information will be discussed at the time of Pre-Consultation Assessment and direction (specific to
the project) will be provided to the proponent.
ESRD is targeting two (2) full business days for provision to the proponent of the Pre-Consultation Assessment.
NOTE: The proponent is to reference the FNC number or specific FNC Activity numbers for any subsequent
consultation submissions related to the file.
Step Four: Proponent Consultation
As per the Guidelines, the proponent will notify the consultation contact for each potentially adversely impacted First
Nation identified in the Pre-Consultation Assessment.
The official consultation contact for each First Nation can be found on the Alberta Aboriginal Relations website at:
A template letter, Notification to First Nation on Project/Plan, has been developed for proponents’ convenience.
To access this template letter, see:
NOTE: ERCB Directive 56 requirements do not replace the requirement for industry to send this letter.
Use of Consultation Contacts not identified on the official list above may result in a determination of “inadequate consultation.”
About the Notification to First Nation
- Attach a plain language information package containing:
- Contact information of the company and agent representative (if applicable)
- Reference to the FNC case file number and FNC Activity number assigned by ESRD
- Clear identification of any known potential short- and long-term adverse impacts to First Nations Rights and Traditional
- Proposed schedule for development
- A non-technical, plain-language description of the proposed activity including the scale, scope, magnitude, and duration
of the proposed project
- A map that clearly illustrate the location of the proposed project in relation to any easily identified or commonly known
landmarks (e.g., settlements, rivers, lakes, roads, etc.)
- A site map that clearly illustrates the nature, scope, and magnitude of the proposed activity (e.g., basic linear measurements
and areal dimensions, existing and proposed facilities, means of access and egress, etc.)
- First Nations will have 21 calendar days to respond with concerns.
- The 21-day response period begins on the date that delivery of the notification package is verified. The response period must include at least 15 Alberta Government business days and may be adjusted depending on
the complexity of the project and other relevant factors.
- Provide verifiable delivery of the notification package by email (delivered and/or read receipt). For available email addresses for First Nations, proponents
should check the Alberta Aboriginal Relations website at:
- If a First Nations email is not available, some other trackable method of delivery should be used, such
as registered mail (receipt), courier (receipt), fax (transaction record) or personal delivery (a record of who received/accepted the information). Note this in Record of Consultation Log. Note: Some First Nations are directing proponents to submit notification packages via online consultation tools. The GoA supports the use of these tools however, until this process is standardized, the GoA will review submission validation on a case by case basis.
- o Proponent may be directed by ESRD staff to follow-up with the First Nations within the 21-day response period. If follow-up
is required, proponent shall contact the First Nation (i.e., official consultation contact) at least two times within the
response period by phone call, email, or personal visit to Band office regarding receipt of the information provided and
to confirm site-specific concerns.
The proponent must maintain a record of consultation using ESRD's "Record of Consultation Log".
Important: The Record of Consultation Log must be used to ensure consistency across the province.
Anything other than the form on this website will be rejected.
About the Record of Consultation Log
Proponents will maintain a Record of Consultation (ROC) for each First Nation consulted, which will include
a complete, detailed, and accurate chronological account of the consultation activities, including all efforts to engage,
both successful and unsuccessful.
Specific information to include:
- Activity name and location (land description list)
- Date of consultation attempt
- The names of person(s) notified
- Method of notification (i.e., phone, fax, email, voice mail, in person, letter, etc.)
- Details of the contact or attempt to contact - no response, details of conversation (issues discussed or concerns raised),
or any other type of response
- Outcomes - what is the proponent doing or is agreeing to do to mitigate First Nation’s concerns, or to avoid potential
impacts? Address in the following manner:
- Identify the concerns
- Provide details about how the concerns were addressed (how the impacts were avoided or mitigated)
- Include areas where agreement could not be reached and the reasons why
- When the proponent believes consultation is complete, the First Nation is sent a copy of the ROC log (via email,
where possible) for review for errors and omissions.
- First Nations will have five (5) Alberta Government business days following verifiable delivery of the ROC in which to respond.
- To confirm the five-day review period, verifiable delivery of the log is required (i.e., email receipt (delivered and/or read receipt),
fax transmission record, registered mail, courier, or personal delivery)
- Where a First Nation has provided a letter stating that they have no concerns with the proposed project, the proponent
will not be required to forward the ROC log to the First Nation.
- A copy of the ROC log(s) (i.e., one for each First Nation) is also sent to ESRD (including any letters of non-objection)
as part of the consultation summary (see next section for further details).
Step Five: Consultation Results
When the proponent believes consultation has been completed, and is looking for a consultation adequacy decision, the proponent
must compile all pertinent documents around the consultation proceedings and submit these through the EDS FNC case file.
Once the proponent has submitted the Consultation Results, the proponent will not be able to interact with the FNC case
file until ESRD reviews and provides recommendations for the FNC case file.
Consultation Results shall include the following:
- The notification letters to First Nations and confirmation of receipt of delivery
- A copy of the plain-language information package sent to First Nations
- A copy of the completed Record of Consultation (ROC) Log sent to each First Nation
- For those First Nations who have been provided a copy of the ROC log, confirmation of receipt is required (i.e., email
(delivered and/or read receipt); registered mail receipt, fax transaction record or a record of who received/accepted the information if personally
delivered to the Band office).
- If changes were made as a result of First Nations review for errors and omissions, include a revised ROC log with the
- Letters of non-objection received from First Nations
- All pertinent documents around the consultation proceedings (example. e-mail correspondence)
- For Consultation Summaries that are complex, extensive or may need additional clarification, the proponents may be required
to include a summary statement containing:
- Key topics of discussion and the concerns and issues raised
- Proposed avoidance and mitigation strategies
- Remaining points of disagreement and reasons why
All electronically scanned supporting documents shall be in PDF format. Scanning will need to be completed to the standards
indicated in Section 1.3.1 – Documents, on page 6 of the EDS First Nations Consultation User Manual at:
When uploading documents within the FNC case file, the naming convention must correlate with the applicable documents as
indicated in Section 7.4 – Document Naming and Type, on page 41 of the EDS First Nations Consultation User Manual
The proponent is to submit the Consultation Results unique to each EDS FNC case file. All documents applicable to the Consultation
Results will need to be complete, accurate and submitted together to the FNC case file. Any missing documents or unclear
information will prompt ESRD to place the review on hold and request additional information in order to continue their review.
Once the Consultation Results are submitted, EDS will trigger a review by ESRD on the specific FNC case file.
Step Six: Consultation Adequacy Review
ESRD will access the EDS FNC case file and review all attached Consultation Results to determine adequacy:
- If consultation is deemed adequate by ESRD, adequacy decisions will be provided electronically to the
proponent through the EDS system and a letter will be provided to the First Nation(s). The proponent may then proceed through
the appropriate application process referencing the FNC number or FNC activity number. An adequacy decision applied to a
FNC Number or FNC Activity Number indicating that consultation with a particular First Nation has been deemed adequate,
or complete, will expire two years from the date of the electronic notification. If the proponent has not utilized that
number for that particular project within two years, they will need to seek a new consultation decision for that project
through the FNC process.
- If consultation is deemed incomplete by ESRD, the proponent will be advised of the deficiencies through
ESRD by the reviewer indicating “more documentation required” on the FNC case file. The ESRD reviewer will outline the deficiencies
or the proponent may be asked to consult further. The proponent will need to resubmit additional documentation when they
are confident that the deficiencies have been addressed and therefore the Consultation Results are complete for ESRD to
review. Note: If the RoC indicates that a meeting or site visit was agreed to between the First Nation and proponent and a reasonable effort has not been demonstrated to ensure that the meeting takes place, consultation will be deemed incomplete until that commitment is met.
- If consultation is deemed inadequate by ESRD, the reviewer will contact the proponent to discuss this
decision. Inadequate consultation could result in the following:
- ESRD deeming the entire FNC case file inadequate.
- ESRD deeming specific FNC activity numbers inadequate allowing the proponent to apply only on those deemed as adequate
The proponent choosing to cancel specific FNC activity numbers of concern to allow the activities deemed adequate to proceed.
Prior to cancelling any FNC activity numbers, the proponent is advised to discuss the scenario with the ESRD case file reviewer.
For proponents who want to cancel FNC case files or FNC activities, refer to Section 4.0 – Cancelling a FNC Site, on page
23 of the EDS First Nations Consultation User Manual at:
Note: ESRD is targeting two (2) Alberta Government business days following submission of the Consultation
Results, for the adequacy review and, if consultation is deemed adequate, issuance of an adequacy decision. The timeline
is a target only and extensions may be required. Projects that are deemed long or complex will require more time to review.
Letter and Forms for First Nations Consultation
As outlined in the procedures above, the following letter and form are required by ESRD as part of the Consultation Results.
- Notification to First Nation on Project/Plan– Letter Template
- Record of Consultation Log
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Updated: Mar 21, 2013