Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al. and Attorney General of Alberta, (1981) 37 N.R. 336 (SCC)

JudgeLaskin, C.J.C., Martland, Ritchie, Dickson, Beetz, Estey, McIntyre, Chouinard and Lamer, JJ.
CourtSupreme Court (Canada)
Case DateJune 22, 1981
JurisdictionCanada (Federal)
Citations(1981), 37 N.R. 336 (SCC);37 NR 336;1981 CanLII 193 (SCC);[1981] 4 CNLR 27;[1981] 6 WWR 342;29 AR 350;[1981] 1 SCR 699;124 DLR (3d) 1

Athabasca Tribal v. Amoco Can. Petro. (1981), 37 N.R. 336 (SCC)

MLB headnote and full text

Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. Ltd. et al. and Attorney General of Alberta

Indexed As: Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al. and Attorney General of Alberta

Supreme Court of Canada

Laskin, C.J.C., Martland, Ritchie, Dickson, Beetz, Estey, McIntyre, Chouinard and Lamer, JJ.

June 22, 1981.

Summary:

This case arose out of an application by several oil companies to the Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board for approval of a tar sands development project, known as "The Alsands Project". The Athabasca Tribal Council, consisting of the chiefs of 5 Indian bands, intervened in the application. The council proposed that the board impose on the developers, as a condition of approval of the project, an affirmative action program giving preference in employment and business opportunities to members of the 5 bands. The board reported to the Lieutenant Governor in Council that such an affirmative action program would be contrary to the Alberta Individual's Rights Protection Act. The Indian band council appealed to the Alberta Court of Appeal.

The Alberta Court of Appeal held that the board had no jurisdiction to order an affirmative action program directed at pre-existing social problems in the area, but only one directed at the problems which would be created by the development project itself - see 22 A.R. 541. The Court of Appeal held further that such an affirmative action program based on racial criteria would be in breach of the Alberta Individual's Rights Protection Act. The Indian band council appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada.

The Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the appeal.

Mines and Minerals - Topic 7083

Regulation - Boards - Jurisdiction respecting affirmative action programs - The Supreme Court of Canada held that the Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board had no jurisdiction under the Energy Resources Conservation Act and the Gas and Oil Conservation Act to order an "affirmative action" program as a condition of the approval of a tar sands plant.

Civil Rights - Topic 990

Discrimination - Employment - Affirmative action programs, validity of - Ritchie, J., of the Supreme Court of Canada, speaking for a minority, stated that a proposed affirmative action program based on racial criteria would not be in breach of the Alberta Individual's Rights Protection Act - See paragraphs 22 to 28.

Cases Noticed:

Regents of University of California v. Bakke (1978), 98 S. Ct. 2733, refd to. [para. 24].

United Steelworkers of America v. Weber (1979), 99 S. Ct. 272, refd to. [para. 24].

Statutes Noticed:

Individual's Rights Protection Act, S.A. 1972, c. 2, sect. 6(1), sect. 7 [para. 23], sect. 11.1 [para. 2].

Energy Resources Conservation Act, S.A. 1971, c. 30, sect. 2 [para. 9], sect. 24 [paras. 10 and 19].

Oil and Gas Conservation Act, R.S.A. 1970, c. 267, sect. 5 [paras. 11 and 19], sect. 43 [para. 12].

Counsel:

Kenneth E. Staroszik, for the appellant;

D.O. Sabey, Q.C., and Brian O'Ferrall, for the respondents, Amoco Canada et al.;

Michael J. Bruni and Keith F. Miller, for the respondent, Energy Resources Conservation Board of Alberta;

B.A. Crane, Q.C., for the intervenant, Attorney General of Alberta.

This appeal was heard by LASKIN, C.J.C., MARTLAND, RITCHIE, DICKSON, BEETZ, ESTEY, McINTYRE, CHOUINARD and LAMER, JJ., of the Supreme Court of Canada at Ottawa, Ontario on December 4 and 5, 1980.

The judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada was delivered on June 22, 1981 and the following opinions were filed:

LAMER, J. - see paragraphs 1 to 3;

RITCHIE, J. - see paragraphs 4 to 30.

MARTLAND, BEETZ, ESTEY and CHOUINARD, JJ., concurred with LAMER, J.

LASKIN, C.J.C., DICKSON and McINTYRE, JJ., concurred with RITCHIE, J.

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13 practice notes
  • R. v. Kapp (J.M.) et al., (2008) 256 B.C.A.C. 75 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • December 11, 2007
    ...1 S.C.R. 103; 65 N.R. 87; 14 O.A.C. 335, refd to. [paras. 21, 98]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 336; 29 A.R. 350, refd to. [para. 31]. Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Allies et al. v. Ontario et al., [2000] 1 S.C.R. 950; 255 N......
  • M. v. H., (1999) 238 N.R. 179 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • March 18, 1998
    ...82 W.A.C. 161, refd to. [para. 182]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al. and Alberta (Attorney General), [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 366, refd to. [para. Yellowknife (City) v. Canada Labour Relations Board and Public Service Alliance of Canada, [1977] 2 S.C.R. 729......
  • Table of Cases
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Individual Employment Law. Second Edition
    • June 16, 2008
    ...329 Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699, 29 A.R. 350, 124 D.L.R. (3d) 1, [1981] 6 W.W.R. 342 ............ 263 ATI Technologies Inc. v. Henry (2000), 5 C.C.E.L. (3d) 101, [2000] O.J. No. 4596 (S.C.J.) .........................................................
  • R. v. Kapp (J.M.) et al., (2008) 376 N.R. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • December 11, 2007
    ...1 S.C.R. 103; 65 N.R. 87; 14 O.A.C. 335, refd to. [paras. 21, 98]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 336; 29 A.R. 350, refd to. [para. 31]. Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Allies et al. v. Ontario et al., [2000] 1 S.C.R. 950; 255 N......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
9 cases
  • R. v. Kapp (J.M.) et al., (2008) 256 B.C.A.C. 75 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court of Canada
    • December 11, 2007
    ...1 S.C.R. 103; 65 N.R. 87; 14 O.A.C. 335, refd to. [paras. 21, 98]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 336; 29 A.R. 350, refd to. [para. 31]. Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Allies et al. v. Ontario et al., [2000] 1 S.C.R. 950; 255 N......
  • M. v. H., (1999) 238 N.R. 179 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court of Canada
    • March 18, 1998
    ...82 W.A.C. 161, refd to. [para. 182]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al. and Alberta (Attorney General), [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 366, refd to. [para. Yellowknife (City) v. Canada Labour Relations Board and Public Service Alliance of Canada, [1977] 2 S.C.R. 729......
  • R. v. Kapp (J.M.) et al., (2008) 376 N.R. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court of Canada
    • December 11, 2007
    ...1 S.C.R. 103; 65 N.R. 87; 14 O.A.C. 335, refd to. [paras. 21, 98]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 336; 29 A.R. 350, refd to. [para. 31]. Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Allies et al. v. Ontario et al., [2000] 1 S.C.R. 950; 255 N......
  • Roberts et al. v. Ontario et al., (1994) 73 O.A.C. 20 (CA)
    • Canada
    • Ontario Court of Appeal (Ontario)
    • August 16, 1994
    ...407 (B.C.S.C.), refd to. [para. 52]. Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. et al. and Alberta (Attorney General), [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699; 37 N.R. 336; 29 A.R. 350, refd to. [para. Regents of the University of California v. Bakke (1978), 438 U.S. 265, refd to. [para. 84]. Canad......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
4 books & journal articles
  • Table of Cases
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Individual Employment Law. Second Edition
    • June 16, 2008
    ...329 Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699, 29 A.R. 350, 124 D.L.R. (3d) 1, [1981] 6 W.W.R. 342 ............ 263 ATI Technologies Inc. v. Henry (2000), 5 C.C.E.L. (3d) 101, [2000] O.J. No. 4596 (S.C.J.) .........................................................
  • Section 15 of the Charter in the Affirmative Action Context
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Archive Special Lectures 2001. Constitutional and Administrative Law
    • August 31, 2002
    ...Travail des Femmes v. Canadian National Railway Co., [1987] 1 S.C.R. 1114; and Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699 at 711. For Charter cases see Andrews v. Law Society of British Columbia (1989), 56 D.L.R. (4th) 1; Vriend v. Alberta, [1998] 1 S.C.R. 4......
  • Human Rights Legislation in the Workplace
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Individual Employment Law. Second Edition
    • June 16, 2008
    ...action hiring quotas for Aboriginal people have been held to be a BFOR in Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. , [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699. 209 Example: Ont. HRC , above note 1, s. 14(2). INDIVIDUAL EMPLOYMENT LAW 264 some provinces the human rights legislation expressly empower......
  • Human Rights Legislation in the Workplace
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Archive Individual Employment Law
    • September 1, 2000
    ...Affirmative action hiring quotas for Indians have been held to be a BFOR in Athabasca Tribal Council v. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co., [1981] 1 S.C.R. 699. 167 E.g., Ont. HRC, above note 1, s. 14(2). 168 As in Ontario under the "special program" provisions in the Ont. HRC, ibid., s. 14(2). See......

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