Posted on March 11, 2021 (updated: March 11, 2021)

Judge denies WestFor’s sweeping injunction application

Nova Scotia moose
Photo by Bryn Pinzgauer via Flickr

HALIFAX/K’JIPUKTUK, UNCEDED TERRITORY OF THE MI’KMAQ PEOPLE – Nova Scotia’s Supreme Court ruled on the interlocutory injunction sought by WestFor against Extinction Rebellion Nova Scotia Association and John and Jane Doe.

In December 2020 nine people were arrested on logging roads in Digby County for refusing to obey the interim version of this injunction.

Justice Coady has allowed the interim injunction to become a more permanent interlocutory one as it applies to the specific harvest areas the Moose Country blockades were protecting. He did not, however, accept WestFor’s ambitious application for a sweeping injunction against any future interference with harvesting by anyone on any land WestFor holds a license to.

The judge also denied WestFor’s application for court costs, noting that, “I am not prepared to award costs as against Extinction Rebellion. This organization, and similar public interest groups, are well-intentioned and play a role in our modern-day democracy.”

Nina Newington, Extinction Rebellion Nova Scotia said:

‘We are delighted by Justice Coady’s ruling. Given how heavily the case law around injunctions favours resource extraction companies, this was quite a win for us. Ecojustice and Juniper Law did a great job.

In spite of WestFor’s efforts to portray us as blockade-happy radicals, the judge recognised that Extinction Rebellion groups like ours are working in the public interest.

Now if the government will do its job as promised, protecting the habitat of endangered species and reforming barbaric forestry practices, Nova Scotians won’t have to put themselves at risk again.’

James Gunvaldsen Klaassen, Ecojustice lawyer said:

“Across the province, habitat loss continues to have devastating impacts on the survival of Nova Scotia’s species, including the iconic Mainland moose. It’s time the Department of Lands and Forestry starts fulfilling its legal duty to protect Nova Scotia’s species at risk before it’s too late.”

About

Extinction Rebellion Nova Scotia is part of a global network of Extinction Rebellion (XR) groups that began in the UK in 2018. Its goal is to get governments around the world to take action to address the Climate and Biodiversity Crises. Its specific demands are simple: Tell the Truth. Act Now. Involve Citizens. XR’s tactics are rooted in respect and non-violent direct action.

Ecojustice uses the power of the law to defend nature, combat climate change, and fight for a healthy environment. Its strategic, public interest lawsuits and advocacy lead to precedent-setting court decisions and law and policy that deliver lasting solutions to Canada’s most urgent environmental problems. As Canada’s largest environmental law charity, Ecojustice operates offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, and Halifax.

Jamie Simpson of Juniper Law is dedicated to working with clients to find legal solutions to environmental and natural resources challenges in Nova Scotia.

For media inquiries

Nina Newington, Extinction Rebellion Nova Scotia
nina@ninanewington.com, 902 698 4347

Venetia Jones, communications specialist | Ecojustice
vjones@ecojustice.ca, 613 447 4546

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