Defending environmental laws that protect all Canadians

Reference re Impact Assessment Act
Photo by Kris Krug via Flickr
Program area – Nature Status: In progress
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Ecojustice is going to court to challenge Premier Jason Kenney’s latest attempt to derail environmental law in Canada.

Under Canadian law, protecting our environment is the shared responsibility of both federal and provincial governments. Canadians of all political stripes to work together to protect that environment.

We are intervening in the Alberta government’s legal challenge of the Impact Assessment Act (IAA) and its regulations. When this legislation was passing through federal parliament as Bill C-69, Canadians from across the country came together to help shape a law that balances industry, environmental and Indigenous interests.

It is a good law that improves upon the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012, legislation by:

  • Bringing important issues to light early in the planning phase, which heads off delays and litigation;
  • Clearly defining the criteria for whether a project is in the public interest by addressing sustainability, environmental obligations, cumulative effects, any mitigation, and effects on Indigenous rights; and
  • Providing greater transparency on important environmental decisions, with no more decision-making behind closed doors for reasons that are not disclosed.

Ecojustice is fighting to defend the IAA because it is balanced, hard-fought legislation that is the product of collaboration by Canadians of all backgrounds, the federal government and Ecojustice lawyers. It is a good law that provides greater protection to the Canadian environment.

This constitutional reference is the latest in a string of politically-motivated attacks on environment and laws developed to defend the air, water, and land on which Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast depend.

When Jason Kenney goes to court, Ecojustice will be there to defend laws that protect all Canadians.

A win would ensure the IAA is implemented throughout Canada, providing greater clarity and certainty about projects to communities and industry alike.

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