Posts Tagged ‘Canadian Environmental Assessment Act’

Federal government posts proposed revisions to regulations under CEAA 2012

April 17th, 2013 by Laura Bowman

Late Friday night, April 12, 2013, the federal government posted the latest revisions to the Regulations Designating Physical Activities under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012.   These regulations determine which projects are potentially subject to a federal assessment under the new Act.

The existing regulations were put in force without any public consultations when CEAA 2012 was enacted in July 2012.  The regulations were based on the comprehensive study list regulations under the old version of CEAA which was repealed in mid-2012.

The amendments to the Regulations Designating Physical Activities proposed by the government at this time are limited.  Some projects are removed and others are clarified.   Diamond mines, apatite mines, railway yards, international and interprovincial bridges and tunnels and “the first offshore exploratory wells in exploration licence area” and expansions to oil sands mines would be added to the project list.  Just being on the project list no longer guarantees an assessment is required.

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Indigenous rights and the duty to consult

January 31st, 2013 by Paula Boutis and Jessica Weizenbluth

On January 8, 2013, Frog Lake First Nation and Mikisew Cree First Nation, through their respective Chiefs, launched judicial review cases in the Federal Court. They are challenging the passage of the now infamous federal government omnibus budget bills, Bill C‑38 (Jobs, Growth and Long‑term Prosperity Act, S.C. 2012, c. 19); and Bill C‑45 (Jobs and Growth Act, 2012, S.C. c.31).

Other Canadians who may oppose these bills can only express their displeasure with them at the ballot box. With Canada’s first‑past‑the‑post electoral system, and a significant fracturing of the centre and centre‑left, it seems like an uphill battle for the rest of the country to challenge these laws, widely considered to be anti‑democratic. For all the efforts of multiple environmental organizations and the actions of the opposition in the House of Commons (perhaps most poignantly, member of Parliament Elizabeth May), there’s not a whole lot the rest of us can do.

Enter, First Nations.

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