On March 18, 2015, the Government of the Northwest
Territories and the Government of Alberta signed a Mackenzie River
Basin Bilateral Water Management Agreement ("NWT/Alberta Water
Agreement"). The NWT/Alberta Water Agreement commits both
governments to cooperatively manage water resources in the
Mackenzie River Basin, one of the longest and largest river systems
Under the NWT/Alberta Bilateral Agreement, the Northwest
Territories and Alberta agree to establish and implement a
framework to achieve the principles of the Master Agreement. Under
the Master Agreement, each party has the right to use the shared
water resources of the Mackenzie River Basin within its
jurisdiction provided such use does not unreasonably harm the
aquatic ecosystem in any other jurisdiction. The Master Agreement
requires the parties to manage water resources in a sustainable
manner for present and future generations and to resolve issues
cooperatively and harmoniously.
The NWT/Alberta Water Agreement provides for an adaptive
management approach to water management based on scientific
monitoring. The NWT/Alberta Water Agreement will result in improved
monitoring and reporting of upstream effects from development. The
NWT/Alberta Water Agreement also establishes ecosystem objectives
that address water consumption, quality, quantity and flow. The
technical details related to objective setting, monitoring and
management actions are found in the
Appendices of the NWT/Alberta Water Agreement. This bilateral
Agreement is an important step forward in Mackenzie River Basin
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