EDMONTON – A final report is in from a public inquiry into what the Alberta government says is foreign funding of environmental groups who want to curtail energy development.
Steve Allan, the commissioner in charge of the inquiry, says when the report is later released Albertans will gain a new understanding of how foreign funding has influenced public policy and debate.
The report is now in the hands of Energy Minister Sonya Savage, who has up to three months before she is legally obliged to release it to the public.
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Critics of the 600-page report say leaked draft versions show Allan clears environmental groups of wrongdoing but tars them as “anti-Albertan” for challenging resource projects on the grounds of environmental protection.
Allan was given the assignment in 2019, but he missed his original deadline date by more than a year and the inquiry cost a million dollars more than the original price tag of $2.5 million.
Environmental groups have described the inquiry as a slanted, slipshod witch hunt with no public hearings, little evidence made public and terms of reference so elastic they were changed twice.