A long awaited decision has been made, and it is being met with praise from the province’s energy regulator.
The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) says it is “pleased that the Supreme Court of Canada recognized the potential massive impacts that [the Redwater case] could have caused . . .” in a public statement about a Supreme Court of Canada decision that ruled in favour of an AER and Orphan Well Association (OWA) appeal of an Alberta court’s judgement in the Redwater Energy case.
In May 2016, the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta ruled in a dispute that pitted Redwater receiver Grant Thornton Limited and creditor ATB Financial against the AER and the OWA. That ruling said that receivers and trustees managing energy company bankruptcies may disregard provincial legislation and ignore environmental and public safety obligations in order to maximize profit for secured creditors. In February 2018, the AER and OWA appealed this ruling to the Supreme Court.
The AER expects its review to take several weeks.
External News Coverage
Supreme Court rules energy companies must clean up old wells—even in bankruptcy.
CBC | January 31, 2019
Bankrupt energy companies can’t walk away from old wells, Supreme Court rules.
The Globe and Mail | January 31, 2019
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Having worked for both the OWA and AER on well abandoments I am extremely pleased with this decision . Finally the court got it right