Alberta's Cabinet Must Be Ready



While Ottawa has made it clear that its ambitious climate agenda is a top priority, Premier Danielle Smith's new Cabinet makes it clear that fighting back is her top priority.

The new Cabinet will likely come face to face with the federal government sooner, rather than later, given the federal government’s plans. 


The Sustainable Jobs Plan (formerly known as the “Just Transition”) is anticipated to come down the pipe in the near future, designed to legislate Alberta’s oil and natural gas industry out of existence entirely, costing 187,000 jobs.

Alongside the Just Transition will be aggressive net-zero targets on both emissions and electricity.

On emissions, the federal government has already committed to a cap by the end of this year. Given that carbon-capture technology has not progressed fast enough to cut emissions at current production levels, the emissions cap is a de-facto production cap, meaning the energy sector is effectively unable to produce any more energy than it already is.

On electricity, the federal government’s proposed 2035 net-zero grid targets are going to be incredibly costly for Alberta. A 2022 AESO report estimates infrastructure costs could reach $52 billion, while a report by independent econometrics firm Navius estimates a loss in GDP of $35 billion, all while Albertans' electricity bills jump by 40%.

All of this means that Alberta's new Cabinet will need to be on a war footing almost immediately.

The key portfolio of Energy and Minerals goes to Brian Jean, the MLA for Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche. His constituency is in the heart of the oil industry, which brings an important perspective to the energy portfolio. During his run for Premier in 2022, Jean demonstrated a preparedness to stand up to the federal government on energy policies, which makes him well-suited for the role of Energy Minister.

The role of Environment and Protected Areas Minister will be filled by Rebecca Schulz, entering her second term as MLA for Calgary-Shaw. Schulz will be tasked with communicating Alberta’s environmental position on the global stage. That will no doubt include asserting Alberta’s interests in any international trade and market access negotiations the federal government undertakes - including the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference or Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, more commonly referred to as COP28. 

Nathan Neudorf will take on the role of Minister of Affordability and Utilities. Given the anticipated costs of Ottawa’s aggressive targets, Neudorf will need to have a strong understanding of the portfolio and defend Alberta’s interests in the face of a plan that will devastate Alberta’s economy and weaken our financial position substantially.

Into the job of President of the Treasury Board and Finance Minister slides Nate Horner, MLA from Drumheller-Stettler. Alberta’s finances are always a topic of conversation around water coolers, and two major areas of contention must be addressed. First, if the federal government does force these harmful policies on our province’s economy, Horner will be dealing with a deteriorating investment climate combined with billions of dollars leaving the province in equalization (which 62% of Albertans voted to abolish in 2021) and other federal transfer programs. Secondly, there is a report on a potential Alberta Pension Plan on its way.

The Ministry of Justice will be headed up by Mickey Amery. Former Justice Minister Tyler Shandro was a key player in the fight against the federal government on gun control, so Amery has some big shoes to fill in this area. Amery is a capable lawyer though, who should fill the role well.

Finally, Danielle Smith herself holds on to the portfolio of Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs in addition to her duties as Premier. Smith has been strong and consistent in both rhetoric and action when it comes to Ottawa and it is likely that, under her leadership, the rest of the Cabinet will follow her lead and make it clear to the federal government that actively destroying our economy will not be tolerated.

The rest of the Cabinet will be important, but these are the key roles. 

Alberta has been under attack for nearly a decade.

The Alberta government, under the guidance of the new Cabinet, must be prepared to defend our interests against hostile policies coming out of Ottawa.

We have some ideas.

They are all a part of the Free Alberta Strategy.

The Alberta government has a right and duty to protect the interests of all Albertans against hostile and aggressive federal government threats to our way of life and our future.

If you want to help us protect Alberta's interests, please help us fund our advocacy efforts today:



Thanks again to you all for everything you've done to advance our cause so far.


The Free Alberta Strategy Team

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  • Curt Hanselmann
    commented 2023-06-14 09:37:03 -0600
    There you go again with the Alberta pension plan. Do we not have bigger fish to fry and wasting time and money on this foolish lateral move?
  • Curt Hanselmann
    followed this page 2023-06-14 08:56:35 -0600
  • Free Alberta Strategy
    published this page in News 2023-06-13 23:26:54 -0600