The Association

Who We Are

Alberta’s Industrial Heartland is one of the world’s most attractive locations for chemical, petrochemical, oil, and gas investment. It is also Canada’s largest hydrocarbon processing region. The region’s 40+ companies, several being world scale, provide fuels, fertilizers, power, petrochemicals and more to provincial and global consumers.

Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association strives to:

  • provide a single approach to promote and facilitate industrial development
  • proactively and efficiently collaborate on facilitating services and infrastructure
  • plan for the area’s use while maximizing attractiveness and efficient industrial development
  • promote and support a coordinated approach to achieving and maintaining appropriate standards of emergency preparedness, public safety, and health

Municipal Members

Alberta’s Industrial Heartland is guided by a non profit association of municipalities dedicated to sustainable eco-industrial development. Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association (AIHA) was created in 1998 by the municipalities who each had land within the geographic area of Alberta’s Industrial Heartland.

A leading principal of AIHA is promoting responsible development within the region. This includes ensuring the region is ready for development in its infrastructure, services, and land use zoning principles. AIHA recognizes that activities in the area can have a major impact on neighboring communities and affect their service delivery as well. Together, the municipalities take a proactive and cooperative approach to planning and industrial development.

The five municipal partners have land within the geographic boundaries of the Heartland and each have one vote within the Association:

Associate Membership was added in 2011. Associate Members are municipalities invited to participate on committees, task forces, and attend Board meetings. While Associate Members do not have voting rights, their views contribute to the actions taken by the Association.

The three Associate Members include:

Board of Directors

As a not-for-profit association, AIHA is governed by a Board of Directors, comprised of one representative of each of the five municipal partners. The Board of Directors provides general direction and strategic priorities for AIHA Executive Director and staff members. Ensuring responsible, productive, and environmentally sound development, the Board and AIHA staff work closely with numerous stakeholders, including government, private industry, and area residents.

Intermunicipal Cooperation

Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association is guided by a set of operating principles and protocols, signed by the Mayors and/or Reeves of the partner municipalities in May 1998.

AIHA Intermunicipal Cooperation Protocol

The participating municipalities of the City of Fort Saskatchewan, City of Edmonton, Lamont County, Strathcona County, and Sturgeon County agree to cooperate and collaborate with each other and with other stakeholders toward achievement of Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association’s objectives. In doing so, it is agreed that each municipality will abide by the operating principles.

Objectives

  • To jointly promote and facilitate the industrial development of the Heartland area.
  • To respect each other’s jurisdictional integrity and autonomy.
  • To provide or facilitate the provision of services and infrastructure required for the area on a proactive, efficient and where feasible, regional basis.
  • To promote open communication and harmony amongst participating Heartland municipalities and other interested parties.
  • To collaboratively plan for the area’s use and infrastructure in a manner which maximizes its attractiveness and efficient functioning for industrial development while minimizing land use and environmental conflicts within the area and on its periphery.
  • To ensure regular and considerate communication and opportunities for involvement with both industrial and non-industrial landowners of the area with respect to its planning and development.
  • To promote and support a coordinated approach to achieving and maintaining appropriate standards of environmental quality and sustainability for the Heartland area.
  • To promote and support a coordinated approach to achieving and maintaining appropriate standards of emergency preparedness, public safety and health for the Heartland area.

Our History

Since the 1950s, world renowned corporations have chosen to locate in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland, taking advantage of its many benefits. Growing in size and scale since that time, it was imperative that development in the Heartland was approached proactively, with collaboration among the area’s businesses, municipal governments, and residents. In the early 1990’s, a comprehensive initiative began, bringing together all stakeholders to create a new model of cooperation in the region.

Formally launched in May 1998, Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association (AIHA) united the four municipalities in the area, three levels of government, and the Northeast Capital Industrial Association (representing industry). The municipalities of Fort Saskatchewan, Lamont County, Strathcona County, and Sturgeon County became official partners through a Board of Directors, providing strategic direction to the Association. These partners recognized that joining resources would enhance their effectiveness in attracting business to the region, improve planning, and ensuring complementary use of resources. In 2010, the City of Edmonton became the fifth municipal partner in an effort to enhance coordination of industrial development in and around the entire Capital Region. Three Associate Members were recognized in 2011 – Towns of Bruderheim, Gibbons, and Redwater. In 2018, AIHA proudly celebrated its 20th anniversary.

To date, the Heartland region has attracted over $40 billion of investment and has developed into Canada’s largest hydrocarbon processing region. The geographic area expanded to encompass 582 square kilometres (225 square miles) of industrial land, and businesses grew to employ a refining workforce of more than 6,000 people. Future development is slated to further increase the region’s bitumen upgrading capacity, pipeline network, and petrochemical processing capabilities.

Strategic Partnerships


The success of Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association is, in large part, dependent on thriving partnerships. Our five municipal members in addition to our three associate members together work collaboratively through a Board of Directors with one representative from each municipality.

Partnerships outside the municipal members are also vital to success. Cooperation with industry, government, and other non-profit groups occurs in a variety of forms, such as membership in their organizations, attendance at meetings, joint projects, and information sharing.

Key partners with our Association include:

Fort Air Partnership

The Fort Air Partnership is an independent, non-profit organization with the following mission: To operate a regional network to monitor and report credible and comprehensive ambient air quality information.

Northeast Capital Industrial Association

NCIA is a not-for-profit cooperative representing industry located in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland. NCIA member companies range from large integrated global chemical and petrochemical industries, to industrial service companies.

Northeast Region Community Awareness Emergency Response

NR CAER is a partnership of more than 40 community-minded industries, municipalities, chemical transporters and government agencies dedicated to emergency response and education initiatives in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland.

Edmonton Global

Edmonton Global was established to advance economic development cooperation amongst stakeholders of the Edmonton Metropolitan Region, to promote the region globally, and to attract and retain business investment and trade for the region.

Government of Alberta – Economic Development and Trade

Government of Canada – Western Economic Diversification 

Annual Stakeholder Event

SOLD OUT - TICKET SALES CLOSED

Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association will hold its Annual Stakeholder Event on Thursday, January 17, 2019 at the Edmonton Convention Centre (Formerly the Shaw Conference Centre) in Edmonton, Alberta. This full-day networking conference offers attendees an opportunity to engage with industry experts and elected officials. The program is designed to highlight activity in the Industrial Heartland region, to offer policy-related insights on topics important to our industry, and to provide information on opportunities for investment. With an expected 1,000 attendees and a world-class line up of speakers, the event delivers industry insight and sector expertise in a comprehensive, comfortable format. Our Annual Stakeholder Event sells out every year and boasts attendance from some of the world’s largest industry players.

Who Attends Our Event

  • Federal, provincial and municipal elected officials
  • Industry experts and company CEOs
  • Senior staff from government and industry, including AB Economic Development and Trade, Municipal Affairs, Energy, Infrastructure, Transportation, and Environment and Parks
  • Representatives from industry partners, like Northeast Capital Industrial Association, Strathcona Industrial Association and Leduc/Nisku Economic Development Association
  • Associated industry partners, like Chemical Industry Association of Canada, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, and the Canadian Heavy Oil Association
  • Individuals, associations and consulting firms invested in the Industrial Heartland
Learn more about the 2019 AIHA Annual Stakeholder Event