Working in the Agricultural Land Reserve of British Columbia


The Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) includes approximately 4.6 million hectares of agricultural land across British Columbia. Farming activities are permitted and encouraged in the ALR. Non-agricultural uses, such as pipelines, borrow pits, watermains, and gravel pits, are restricted unless approved by the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC). To gain approval, a Non-farm Application must be submitted to the ALC. Conditions of approval often include site assessments before and after the activity takes place, with input and guidance obtained from a Professional Agrologist. That’s where EDI team members like Ryan Buck come in.

“When we complete a preliminary assessment, we describe the baseline conditions before the non-agricultural use takes place. These baseline inventories can include soil and vegetation surveys, investigations of agricultural land capability, and development of a reclamation plan,” explains Ryan. “Post reclamation and closure assessments are completed after the non-agricultural use takes place. We look to see if the reclamation plan was executed properly and if the reclamation activities match the end land use, which means restoring the affected areas to their previous agricultural capability. We also help finalize the reporting requirements according to the terms and conditions of the approval.”


Professional Agrologists at EDI, like Ryan, have both experience with the ALC process and recognized portfolios of projects completed for the ALC. Examples of projects EDI team members have worked on relating to this topic area include Yon-Der Farms Aggregate Mine, the Village of Telkwa Watermain Project, and the MacKay Logging Aggregate Products Project . EDI has team members with erosion and sediment control experience that can lend a hand. GIS and mapping experts are also on the team and can assist with presenting information on soils, topography, water features, and agricultural land capability.

To access the source of the ALR and ALC information provided herein, please click HERE. If you have questions regarding the ALC process or need help with a project in the ALR, CONTACT US. The knowledge and tools our team members use for projects in the ALR are also applicable to other agricultural activities (e.g., development on native grassland) across western Canada. For additional information on Agriculture Sector services provided by EDI, please click HERE.

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