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Our estimated processing time for this application is 30 business days. See our timeline spreadsheet for updates.

Purpose of the Application

Companies must submit applications for wells, facilities, and pipelines under Directive 056: Energy Development Applications and Schedules when

  • technical requirements will not be met,
  • a variance from regulatory requirements is requested, or
  • the use of new technology is proposed and there are no outstanding concerns or objections.

Companies must submit applications to overcome issues such as

  • equipment spacing waivers,
  • proximity to water bodies, and
  • pipeline discontinuations.

A company may also apply for specific activities, such as

Process Checklist

Before Applying
Before applying, a company must have all applicable approvals in place, such as surface lease agreements, public lands dispositions, and mineral rights. Visit our Application Processes page for a list of our approval processes.

Depending on the type of application, additional approvals from the AER or other government agencies may be required.

Submit an Application
Companies must submit nonroutine technical authorization applications through our Digital Data Submission (DDS) system. We will register each application and assign a reference number.

By submitting an application, the company accepts that its information is no longer confidential.

All mandatory documents must be included in the submission. Depending on the type of application, this may include a well survey, pipeline right-of-way and maps, or facility-plot plan and process-flow diagram. Supporting documents for variance applications are outlined in the “How to…” sections of Directive 056.

Review Process

  1. We share all applications on our Public Notice of Application page to encourage public participation in the approval process.
  2. Anyone who believes they may be directly and adversely affected by an application can file a statement of concern (SOC). If we receive an SOC, it may take us longer to process the application.
  3. We will assign the application to a subject matter expert for initial review. If information is missing (i.e., the application is not complete), we will close the application.
  4. If the application is complete, we will proceed with a full technical review. If the applied-for well or facility site falls within an area covered by the Lower Athabasca Regional Plan or South Saskatchewan Regional Plan, our review will be more stringent.
  5. We may request additional information (through a supplemental information request) to complete our technical review.
  6. We will decide to approve, close, or deny the application. If we close it, the applicant may reapply without prejudice. If we deny it, the applicant can file an appeal through our appeal process.
  7. We may perform postapproval audit reviews to ensure that our requirements are met for the design, construction, and operation of the proposed activity, and to identify areas for continuous improvement.
  8. We will provide the applicant with a link to the letter with our decision, which is accessible through the Integrated Application Registry or OneStop. We will also share our decision on our Publication of Decision page.

We do not have the authority to waive compliance or vary any restriction, limitation, or requirement about a land area or land use under a regional plan. Applicants seeking this type of relief must apply directly to Alberta’s Land Use Secretariat established under the Alberta Land Stewardship Act.