09/02/2015 13:46 EDT | Updated 09/02/2016 01:12 EDT

Both sides of climate change debate seeding grassroots before Alberta panel

EDMONTON — Advocates on both sides of Alberta's climate change debate are mobilizing their grassroots hoping to influence a panel that is to recommend how the province should address the issue.

A group created by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and called the "Energy Citizens" is in one corner.

Greenpeace's "Get Fresh" campaigners, who tell supporters that the province needs to hear their voices, are in the other.

Both groups are urging their supporters to fill out an online survey that the province is looking to for insight into what average Albertans think.

The sides also want their members to turn out in numbers to government townhall meetings held this week in Calgary and Edmonton.

They are also tweeting and posting on Facebook.

In the middle sits panel chairman Andrew Leach, who is tasked with listening to both partisans and the public.

Leach says giving citizens a chance to speak up is not the same as getting a representative sample of what people want.

The Canadian Press