25 Years of Environmental Achievements at the M.D. of Ranchland No. 66

The Municipal District of Ranchland No. 66 prides itself as one of the most environmentally conscious
municipalities in Alberta. Nestled away in the foothills and Rocky Mountains, the M.D. is home to
countless watersheds, rangelands, forests, and wildlife, and has made it a top priority to take care of

For 25 years, Ranchland has consistently implemented creative solutions to environmental issues. The
M.D. has gone above and beyond to promote activities that are sustainable and compatible with the
environment and the species and habitats we share the landscape with. The municipality particularly
endeavors to protect and enhance the headwaters of the Oldman River and South Saskatchewan River

A few highlights of environmental achievements include:

  • Created a native grass seed harvesting program, leading to improved establishment/success of local
    reclamation projects, increased awareness of importance of local seed in reclamation, and
    opportunity for reclamation knowledge sharing between organizations/individuals.
  • Prevented environmental damage, contamination, and habitat destruction in the Oldman River
    headwaters through efforts such as letters, meetings with officials, community events, and
    awareness campaigns opposing construction of the open pit Grassy Mountain coal mine.
  • Mitigated Off-Highway Vehicle/outdoor recreation damage and protected forest ecosystems by
    inducing provincial policy changes that ultimately created a legislated conservation zone.
  • Implemented bylaws/policies to prevent ecosystem fragmentation and ensure sustainable land use
    by prohibiting subdivision of land smaller than 160 acres and prohibiting development in
    environmentally sensitive areas.
  • Conserved and restored watersheds by creating the M.D.’s own Riparian Assistance Program, a
    program offering funding to assist ranchers and community members in the implementation of
    riparian improvement projects.
  • Preserved ecosystems by initiating projects and partnerships with a wide range of environmental
    organizations, resulting in 25 years of collaborative environmental efforts.