ARCHIVED - Update on the Modernization of the Act, Regulations, and Systems (MARS) - Volume III, Issue 4

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IOGC Quarterly Newsletter

Reporting Period January 1, 2014 to March 31, 2014

In previous newsletters, we informed you that the department was considering a phased approach for the coming into force of the Indian Oil and Gas Regulations (IOGA Regulations). The Indian Oil and Gas Act, 2009 (IOGA, 2009) would come into force at the same time as a set of core IOGA Regulations to ensure First Nations could benefit sooner rather than later from the IOGA, 2009. This phased approach would include amendments to the Indian Oil and Gas Regulations, 1995 to make them compatible with the IOGA, 2009 plus new regulations in the areas of: 1) Drainage and Compensatory Royalty; 2) Sub-surface Tenure; 3) First Nations' Audit (considered a component of Royalty Management); and, 4) reporting requirements to facilitate royalty verification. The remaining regulatory modules will be developed in a sequence that has yet to be finalized.

This new approach would allow First Nations to benefit sooner from the IOGA, 2009 which gives new powers for IOGC: 1) to audit companies working on First Nation lands; 2) to set longer periods for industry to maintain records for auditing purposes; 3) to deal more effectively with surface and sub-surface trespass; 4) to protect First Nation sites of cultural importance; 5) to order companies to take remedial action under certain circumstances; and, 6) to issue fines and penalties for offences under the Act or regulations.

The Minister sent a letter dated December 3, 2013 to the Indian Resource Council (IRC) asking for their support for this approach. The phased approach was presented to the member First Nations of the IRC on January 22, 2014 in Saskatoon and received a positive vote. Some details still need to be finalized.

IOGC held two oil and gas symposiums; one on March 28, 2014 in Regina and one on March 31, 2014 in Edmonton. The Saskatchewan First Nations Natural Resources Centre of Excellence and the IRC assisted IOGC with logistics of the symposiums. At the symposiums, IOGC presented: 1) the draft regulations for discussion and feedback; and, 2) scenarios and timeframes for the coming into force of the IOGA, 2009 and its regulations. In addition, IOGC confirmed that they have met with and commit to meeting with Chiefs and Councils from individual First Nations when requested. Please contact IOGC if you would like a one-on-one session or require further information.

IOGC's executive and technical experts completed a detailed review of the first complete draft of the regulations in Q4. Once regulatory drafters have made the changes requested by IOGC, draft regulations will be provided to First Nations and the IRC's Joint Technical Committee for review and comment.

Supporting material required for regulations approval are underway. The two Strategic Environmental Assessments – the Initial Checklist as well as the Preliminary Analysis – have both received final approval. The Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement has been drafted and AANDC is working with Treasury Board to finalize it.

The department is in the process of appointing a Minister's Special Representative to assist IOGC with provincial consultation as well as with regulatory development. As reported in the last quarterly newsletter, the department will be providing regular progress reports on the status of regulations development in the form of a letter addressed to Chief and Council of First Nations with oil and gas resources, or the potential for such resources.

Informatics enhancements to support changes as a result of the MARS project continue as planned. IOGC is now a member of Petrinex, the recognized authoritative source for hydrocarbon volume and pricing data, so IOGC is: exploring options for implementing data structures to optimize compatibility with Petrinex; exploring options for initiatives to enhance both the accuracy and quality of IOGC's current data; and, preparing the required documents for Treasury Board approval to complete the work required for IOGC membership and data exchange with Petrinex.  If approved, and following procurement activities, requirements definition and systems construction could begin sometime after September 2014 for the: 1) Resource Information Management System 2 (RIMS2) Royalty Management Components; 2) data use, sharing, and exchange with Petrinex; and, 3) a case management system to track critical issues.

For further information, please contact IOGC at:

Indian Oil and Gas Canada / Pétrole et gaz des Indiens du Canada
100 – 9911 boul. Chiila Blvd.
Tsuu T'ina AB T2W 6H6
Phone: (403) 292-5625
Fax: (403) 292-5618

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