Geophysical Inspector Program

The department administers the Geophysical Regulatory Enforcement Program (also known as the Geophysical Inspector Program), which involves the enforcement of:

  • The Mines and Minerals Act (particularly Part 8, which outlines regulations for resource exploration)
  • Alberta Exploration Regulation (AR 284/2006) and the associated Exploration Directives on non-public lands (e.g. private land and road allowances).

Duties of Geophysical Inspectors

The Geophysical Inspector Program consists of inspectors located in Edmonton and Red Deer who will:

  • Conduct random field inspections of seismic crews throughout the province on private land and road allowance
  • Liaison between the industry, government and the general public for seismic exploration related questions and inquiries
  • Facilitate and attempt to resolve issues and concerns between the geophysical industry and landowner, municipal districts, counties, and Special Areas

Geophysical Crew Inspections

Geophysical inspectors conduct field inspection of seismic crews as part of the Regulatory Enforcement Program to ensure compliance with the legislation.

If an infraction is identified through a crew inspection or a concern raise by a third party, various levels of enforcement action may be imposed including a monetary penalty.

Landowner Assistance

This program also assists landowner, Counties, Municipal Districts (including Special Areas and Irrigation Districts) with geophysical-related inquiries and concerns reported to be associated with exploration activity.

The geophysical inspectors will conduct and investigation into issues and concerns and may initiate facilitation towards a solution between the geophysical industry and landowner, municipal districts, counties, and Special Areas.

The investigation of landowner concerns includes, but is not limited to, the following list of examples:

  • Flowing or cratered shot holes
  • Livestock damages
  • Permit disputes
  • Structural damage
  • Surface damages
  • Trespass (and related damage)
  • Water wells
  • Other miscellaneous inquiries

Geophysical Permit Agent Course

The department is active in developing industry training. A Geophysical Permit Agent Course is offered through the industry training school, ENFORM, located in Calgary. Although this program is not mandatory, it is highly recommended that all permit agents complete this course.

Upon completion, ENFORM will confirm satisfactory completion of the course by issuing a certification number to the geophysical permit agent.

A landowner should request a record of the geophysical permit agent’s certification number on the permit form to confirm that the geophysical permit agent has completed the industry and government recognized program.

Geophysical Inspector Contact information

If you need to contact a geophysical inspector for information regarding geophysical operations or there is an issue or concern, contact the 24-hour dedicated line at:

Geophysical Inspector Program – Exploration Unit
Phone: 780 427-3932
Toll free phone: 310-0000

If your phone call is not answered, please leave a message and the information received will be forwarded to an Inspector who will respond to the inquiry.

If there is an issue, concern or an alleged compliance issue, an unbiased field investigation may be initiated in an effort to resolve the issue or concern.

Related links

For more information on geophysical operations and landowners rights, visit:

Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development


Page Information

Updated: May 10 2017