The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) and the Aboriginal Consultation Office (ACO) have updated the Joint Operating Procedures for First Nations and Metis Settlement consultation (JOPs), effective October 31, 2018.

These changes will help the AER and the ACO work together more effectively and efficiently, allowing proponents to experience a more streamlined process and ensuring the regulator has advice on the adequacy of consultation and whether actions may be required to address potential adverse impacts.

The internal procedures are available on the AER website:


We are pleased to announce a new ACO organizational model effective October 01, 2018. We are confident that this model will support us to effectively achieve the key elements of our mandate:
  • Managing the consultation process and determining the adequacy of consultation for activities under the jurisdiction of the AER;
  • Working with First Nations and Metis Settlements, industry and other stakeholders to build respectful relationships and increase understanding of the Policy and Guidelines; and
  • Providing information and guidance to other GOA ministries about the consultation process, including recommendations as to adequacy of consultation.

The new model is predicated on the establishment of three operating Regions: Northeast, Northwest and South and two new units: Strategic Relations and Performance Enhancement and Regulatory Efficiency. On the ground, the model will allow us to respond more quickly and effectively as circumstances change in each Region and better serve our clients as a result. At the same time, the creation of the two new units will better position the ACO to develop new or improved processes and tools to use in our work and build more robust relationships across government, as well as with our Indigenous and industry partners.

Please see the ACO Contacts tab for a complete list of ACO staff.

In June 2018, Indigenous Relations is moving to a more effective and rigorous information and records management system for the review of consultation files. The new Record of Consultation Information Management (ROC IM) system will allow the ministry to respond to Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy, and litigation requests more quickly and to serve the public more efficiently. Please read this memo to see how proponents will be affected and how to avoid file delays.

Aboriginal Consultation Office

The Aboriginal Consultation Office (ACO) manages the following aspects of Alberta's First Nations and Metis Settlements consultation processes:

  • Pre-consultation assessment
  • Management of the consultation process
  • Assessment of consultation adequacy

The ACO is aligned with other regulatory bodies to ensure First Nation's Treaty rights and traditional uses, as well as Metis Settlements members’ harvesting and traditional use activities, are respected in all matters regarding land and natural resource management in Alberta.

The ACO is committed to continuous improvement and will continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure that the ACO delivers on its commitment of enhancing consultation in Alberta.

Reporting to the Minister of Indigenous Relations, the ACO was created on November 1, 2013 and is governed by

  • The Government of Alberta’s Policy on Consultation with First Nations on Land and Natural Resource Management, 2013; and
  • The Government of Alberta’s Policy on Consultation with Metis Settlements on Land and Natural Resource Management, 2015.

For more information on these policies, please visit: