Consultation and Approvals: What is broken, how do we fix it, and get some pipelines built
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When: March 18-2019
Where: Calgary Petroleum Club
319 5th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta  T2P 0L5
Contact: Jill Sugars
403-269-1755 ext 300

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Presentation Title: Biocultural Leadership

Research Focus: Oil and Gas, Energy Policy, Bioculture, First Nations

Presentation Type: Oral Presentation, Microsoft PowerPoint


Canada has one of the largest portfolios of natural resources on earth and is home to a variety of environments, peoples and cultures. In the past decade the debate over energy infrastructures and land development has been marred by polarized viewpoints and widespread misconceptions; these factors have, in turn, led to project cancellations and loss of investor confidence in our collective ability to develop a sustainable economy. As traditional models of resource development and regulatory regimes face unprecedented challenges, the need to shape a new way forward is felt by industry and society alike.


Bioculture links society, communities and cultures with the diversity of life with which we are all closely interrelated. This paradigm of impact assessment and conservation is based on greater integration of environmental, cultural and societal input into all levels of the decision-making process while promoting a regulatory regime that is sustainable for business. Biocultural approaches can increase a project’s social license and inform policy by encouraging participation, incorporating cultural and societal impacts into regulatory frameworks, and ensuring cultural resilience and the greater inclusion of First Nation people and Traditional Knowledge.


This short presentation will introduce the biocultural approach and provide attendees with practical rationales and examples of how leading in First Nation engagement, environmental stewardship, and public inclusion presents a truly sustainable approach to ensuring the continued resilience of the oil and gas industry for decades to come. 


Domenico Santomauro

M. NRES, P. Tech, cd.CIP, C.PESC, EP

Principal, Great Bear Environmental Consulting Ltd.


Domenico (Dom) Santomauro is an entrepreneur, professional, and educator with roots in Canada and Italy. From a young age, Dom developed a strong attraction to natural and cultural spaces. An avid rock climber, he became part of the Alpine Club and Cave Rescue teams and involved in numerous national and international adventure travels. After completing a Degree in Geographic Science at the University of Bologna, Italy, and a specialization in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) at the University of California, USA, Dom achieved a Master’s degree in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies (M.NRES) from the University of Northern British Columbia in Prince George, BC. From there, he moved to Fort St. John, BC, where he worked as Environmental Scientist and Ecologist until 2012, when he opened Great Bear Environmental Consulting Ltd. Dom has completed hundreds of projects in the environmental and cultural sectors, acquiring an in-depth understanding of the environmental and socio-cultural factors affecting oil and gas developments and their perception. Dom has been lead author on reports and publications, and also teaches professional courses on behalf of academic institutions and in First Nation communities across western Canada. Dom currently resides in Calgary, Alberta.



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