Federal oilsands panel comes as 'surprise'
CALGARY - Alberta's environment minister says he was taken by surprise by a federal panel appointed to look into environmental monitoring of the oilsands.
Rob Renner says Alberta has led other jurisdictions when it comes to monitoring water quality in the oilsands region.
Last week, he announced the province was creating its own independent panel to determine the source of toxic metals and hydrocarbons in the land and water near the industry.
He says he has contacted his federal counterparts and made it clear that he doesn't want to see a duplication of efforts.
Renner says it's possible the two panels could end up working together in the future.
The federal panel is expected to complete its final report in 60 days, while the Alberta group has until Feb. 1.