Area of Study: Ecosystem Service Markets

The Implementation of Market Based Conservation Tools Under ALSA: A Review


A great deal of time and expertise has been expended to explore how the ambitions of the Land Use Framework (LUF) and Alberta Land Stewardship Act (ALSA) might be realized.  Various regional and sectoral organizations have participated in and tracked the progress of the implementation of the LUF and ALSA. To date, however, outside of government there has been no single report on that progress.

This research study aimed to examine the history and current status of the implementation of the various land stewardship tools set out in the Alberta LUF and ALSA, with particular emphasis on market-based conservation tools.  

We found that most of the initiatives ushered in by the LUF and ALSA have not been consistently or vigorously pursued in policy development.  One pre-existing tool, conservation easements, has continued to become common-place and play an important role in land stewardship.  However, the other tools specified in the LUF and ALSA, conservation offsets and trade of development credits, have not seen significant progress.