Category: Environmental

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Supreme Court Rejects First Nation’s Spiritual Objection to Ski Resort

November 3, 2017

On November 2, 2017, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) ruled in Ktunaxa Nation v. British Columbia (Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations) that a decision to approve the Jumbo Glacier Resort did not violate the Ktunaxa Nation’s (Ktunaxa) right to freedom of religion and did not breach the Crown’s duty to consult. The decision focuses on the reciprocal obligations…

British Columbia Implements New Spill Reporting Requirements

October 27, 2017

On October 30, 2017, amendments to the spill management regime that were made under the British Columbia Environmental Management Act (EMA) in 2016 will come into force. These amendments will implement a new spill reporting, preparedness and response process in B.C. (for more information, see our April 2016 Blakes Bulletin: B.C. Proposes to Significantly Broaden Requirements for Spill Reporting and…

Did I Forget the “Dam” Licence? A Primer on B.C.’s Regulatory Power Over Water Storage Facilities

October 19, 2017

Should waves of concern wash over British Columbia after the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives sent a letter to the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office claiming nearly 60 unlicensed dams were built in northeast B.C. to store fresh water for natural gas fracking operations? The letter claims many of these dams lack proper regulatory authorization, show signs of failing and were…

Doing Business in Canada

October 10, 2017

The Blakes Doing Business in Canada guide is an introductory summary of the laws and regulations that affect the conduct of business in Canada.

Plan Approvals Submitted Under Environmental Permits Are Appealable Decisions in B.C.

September 7, 2017

In the recent decision in Unifor Local 2301 v. Rio Tinto Alcan Inc., the British Columbia Court of Appeal (Court) confirmed that approval of a monitoring plan submitted under an environmental permit falls within the definition of a “decision” under the appeal provisions of the Environmental Management Act (EMA). The case is a useful reminder to industry proponents that plans…

Quebec Amends its Energy Efficiency Regulations and Moves Towards Implementation of 2030 Energy Policy

August 16, 2017

On August 15, 2017, the Regulation respecting the energy efficiency of electrical or hydrocarbon-fuelled appliances (Quebec Regulations) was amended in order to eliminate and reduce disparities with the energy efficiency regulatory requirements applicable to appliances at the federal level (Federal Regime). The amendment to the Quebec Regulations notably extends the scope of appliances that it covers, in addition to increasing…

SCC Confirms the Role of Regulatory Tribunals in Aboriginal Consultation

July 27, 2017

On July 26, 2017, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) released two decisions on the role of the National Energy Board (NEB) and other regulatory tribunals in aboriginal consultation: Clyde River (Hamlet) v. Petroleum Geo‑Services Inc. (Clyde River) and Chippewas of the Thames First Nation v. Enbridge Pipelines Inc. (Chippewas). The decisions are significant in clarifying the law in relation…

Ontario Court Overturns Quarry Licence Due to Government Failure to Adequately Consult First Nations

July 20, 2017

The Ontario Divisional Court (Court) has set aside a quarry licence issued to a private company on the basis that the Ontario government failed to fulfil its constitutional obligation to consult with local First Nations impacted by the project. The Court’s July 14, 2017 decision in Saugeen First Nation v. Ontario (MNRF) provides valuable guidance as to the scope of…

Canada Proposes New Regulations to Strengthen Rail Security for the Transportation of Dangerous Goods

July 10, 2017

On June 24, 2017, the federal government proposed new regulations under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, entitled the Transportation of Dangerous Goods by Rail Security Regulations (Rail Security Regulations). The Rail Security Regulations are intended to strengthen the security of Canada’s rail system from potential sabotage or terrorist attack. Once enacted, the Rail Security Regulations will also bring Canada’s…

Quebec Court Rules on the Role of Social Acceptability in the Project Approval Process

July 6, 2017

On June 21, 2017, the Superior Court of Québec (Court) ruled against Ressources Strateco inc. (Strateco) in a decision that addresses the issue of social acceptability in the context of project approvals in Northern Quebec. In Ressources Strateco inc. c. Procureure générale du Québec, the Court rejected Strateco’s claim for approximately C$200-million in damages, including punitive damages, against the Attorney…

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