Posts Tagged ‘Mining’

Canadian mining company may be held liable for human rights abuses committed abroad by its foreign subsidiaries

August 13th, 2013 by Priya Sarin

On July 22, 2013, Justice Brown of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice released her decision on whether or not related lawsuits against three mining companies, Hudbay Minerals Inc. (“Hudbay”), HMI Nickel Inc. (“HMI”) and Compañía Guatemalteca de Níquel S.A. (“CGN”), would be permitted to proceed (the “Hudbay Actions”). The defendants brought preliminary motions in March of this year to strike each of the claims on the basis that they disclosed no reasonable cause of action. As discussed below, Justice Brown quite rightly dismissed all three of the defendants’ motions. This is a groundbreaking decision because it will result in the first time that an action is litigated in Canada on the question of whether a Canadian parent company (i.e. Hudbay) can be held liable for the actions of its subsidiaries abroad (i.e. CGN and HMI) and, moreover, it recognizes that such a finding is in fact possible.

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Aggregate hearings should include rural residents who are most affected

May 10th, 2012 by Laura Bowman

Our client, North Dufferin  Agricultural  and Community Taskforce, Inc. (NDACT) was surprised on Friday May 4 to learn that the Standing Committee on General Government would be commencing the review of the Aggregate Resources Act the following Monday May 7, and that aggregate resource reps were already informed and scheduled to appear.

To make matters worse, no hearings were scheduled in rural communities.  These communities are most affected by the policies in the ARA, which unfairly favour aggregate extraction over other policy objectives.  Our client wrote to the Standing Committee on General Government asking for more time for a more thorough review and for rural hearings.  This request was entirely reasonable and was granted yesterday when the Committee moved to request travelling hearings.

Read Carl Cosack, chair of NDACT’s letter here.

Uncertain environmental impacts remain difficult to challenge

December 14th, 2011 by Laura Bowman

Liard First Nation v. Yukon Territory (Minister of Energy, Mines & Resources), 2011 YKSC 55 (pdf)

The Liard First Nation is in the southeast Yukon. The First Nation participated in the territorial environmental assessment (EA) of a proposed quartz mine by Selwyn Chihong in the Howard’s pass area near Watson Lake.  After consultations with Liard FN the Yukon designated office approved the environmental assessment report. There were numerous outstanding environmental questions at the end of the environmental assessment process. The main dispute in the case was the deferral of controversial water and pollution issues to licensing. The Liard FN alleged that the approval of the environmental assessment was unreasonable and breached the duty to consult and accommodate.

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