Although Canada has a reputation as a generally progressive and green nation, many of the statutes we count on to defend nature, combat climate change and fight for a healthy environment have not kept pace with the times and are ill-equipped to deal with modern threats, like climate change.
That’s why when the Liberals swept into power in 2015 promising to restore public trust in environmental decision-making, engage in nation-to-nation relations with Indigenous communities, and take action on climate change by reviewing Canada’s key environmental laws, we jumped at the opportunity to take part in the process.
Over the course of two years, we worked with a coalition of partners and met with lawmakers on Parliament Hill, urging them to ‘get it right’ and enact strong laws that will protect Canadians and the environment.
All this work reached its peak in February 2018 when the federal government tabled two environmental reform bills. Bill C-69 would replace the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act with a new Impact Assessment Act and the National Energy Board Act with a new Canadian Energy Regulator Act. It would also amend the Navigation Protection Act. Bill C-68 proposes amendments to the Fisheries Act.
In June 2019, both these bills were passed into law.