Premier-elect Jason Kenney has suggested he would scrap Energy Efficiency Alberta, the agency that helps dole out funding raised through the carbon tax levy, but instead create what’s called the Technology Innovation and Emissions Reductions program, which would fund clean technologies to reduce carbon emissions. | File photo

Provincial or federal: which carbon tax is cheaper?

Alberta farmers can expect to initially pay less for a carbon tax under the federal government if the provincial program is scrapped, but costs will creep up in the future. The carbon tax will remain in Alberta no matter who forms the next provincial government, but the costs of the tax will depend on who’s […] Read more


The party's agriculture platform, released April 8, says the party aims to grow Alberta's agriculture industry by $1 billion through new programs and policies. | Screencap via albertaparty.ca

Alberta Party focuses on research, value-added

Farmers can expect an elected Alberta Party government to tweak farm safety legislation, as well as kickstart a fund to bolster research. The party’s agriculture platform, released April 8, says the party aims to grow Alberta’s agriculture industry by $1 billion through new programs and policies. The Alberta Party said it would create an agriculture […] Read more


NDP leader Rachel Notley has said the increased oil volumes won’t affect grain capacity, a sentiment many transportation experts agree with, because most oil would go to the United States, avoiding congested grain ports in Vancouver.
 Jason Kenney has vowed to scrap the NDP measures, arguing it would save Alberta from spending $3.7 billion on the plan and that the private sector would step in to put more oil on the tracks. | File photo

Farmers want assurances on crude-by-rail plan

Farm leaders are still wary of Alberta’s plans to move more oil by rail, hoping whoever wins the election will be able to prove grain movement won’t be affected. The deal, which would see the province move 120,000 barrels per day by mid-2020 with smaller shipments beginning in July, came up during the campaign last […] Read more

An abandoned well near Bawlf is an example of the growing problem facing rural Alberta.  |  Jeremy Simes photo

Landowners want action on abandoned wells

Political parties spend little time during the election campaign talking about how to deal with growing problem

BAWLF, Alta. — Bill Leithead stops beside an abandoned oil well site near his home in Camrose County, lamenting the problems the industry has caused for farmers over the past few years. The site is on land owned by his neighbours, Larry and Linda Nikiforuk, who happened to drive by as Leithead discussed the challenges. […] Read more


University of Alberta students James Ritchie, left, Claye Harsany, Dana Stoyberg, Heidi Trenson and Vladimir Tadic worked on a project that looks to slowly change beef grading in Canada.  |  Jeremy Simes photo

Beef grade face lift proposed

Imagine beef on grocery store shelves rated similarly to hotels: five stars for excellent or three stars for OK — that’s what a group of University of Alberta students are proposing. The capstone project, led by the fourth-year agriculture undergrads, looks to slowly change beef grading in Canada, moving to a five-point system that scores […] Read more

NDP vows to extend AFSC financing

Alberta farmers can expect a re-elected NDP government to streamline farmland approvals and allow the Agriculture Financial Services Corp. to extend financing for non-traditional crops and livestock. The measures, unveiled in NDP leader Rachel Notley’s platform March 31, hope to lure voters despite rural support remaining generally low for the party. The NDP platform said […] Read more

UCP Leader Jason Kenney, Liberal Leader David Khan, NDP Leader Rachel Notley and Alberta Party Leader Stephen Mandel square off during the leaders debate April 4 in Edmonton.

Alta. leaders debate rife with attacks, but no clear winner

Alberta party leaders offered their best sales pitches last night to lure voters, but it’s clear no one came out on top as the true winner. The leaders debate largely saw NDP Leader Rachel Notley and UCP Leader Jason Kenney attack one another’s platforms, though they occasionally explained their visions for the province. The leaders […] Read more


The solar panels that Jordan Schuurman installed on his barn near Kavanagh, Alta., were partly funded by the carbon tax. He says they have reduced electricity costs significantly.   |  Jeremy Simes photo

Carbon tax remains thorny subject in Alberta

Most farmers are opposed to the levy because they consider it a cash grab, but a few say they don’t mind paying it

Jordan Schuurman has a different take than most farmers on Alberta’s carbon tax. The Edmonton-area dairy farmer doesn’t mind paying the levy, but he makes it clear he’s no environmental activist and is generally wary of government programs. But, he said, his solar panels that were partly funded by the contentious tax have been helpful […] Read more

Alberta’s producer groups say they feel that farmers have lost the provincial government as a partner in agricultural research.  |  File photo

Farmers pitch better research collaboration

Alberta producer groups are hoping whichever party comes into power this April will better collaborate with farmers on research, making the issue one of their top priorities this election campaign. Leaders say they are concerned research could be headed in the wrong direction, pointing to recent changes in government policy, decreased funding and the disbanding […] Read more