Atmosphere & Energy
OTTAWA— Ecojustice and Sierra Club Canada will tell the House of Commons Finance Committee today to remove sections from the budget bill (C-9) that gut Canada’s environmental assessment law. Again this year, the federal government is hiding changes to Canada’s environmental protection laws in the budget to avoid public scrutiny.
“Canada’s environmental assessment law should be publicly debated in the House of Commons Environment Committee, not weakened through quick-and-dirty amendments buried in budget bills,” said Ecojustice lawyer Stephen Hazell. “Parliament is legally required to start a comprehensive review of this law in June, and the Environment Committee should be the body to recommend any changes.”
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OTTAWA—Members of the Climate Action Network-Réseau Action Climat Canada are very pleased to celebrate historic progress in Canadian climate change policy today with the passing of the third reading vote on the Climate Change Accountability Act (Bill C-311).
“The passing of the Climate Change Accountability Act is a huge victory for climate change policy in Canada,” said John Bennett of Sierra Club Canada. “The environmental movement has supported this Bill from its inception as one of the strongest piece of climate change legislation in Canadian politics.”... Read more »
The Conservative government's decision not to host an environment ministers' meeting ahead of the G8 summit in June has infuriated critics and environmental groups, who say Canada broke with tradition and missed a good opportunity to show a commitment to battle climate change.
Canada has faced several rounds of criticism about its environmental policies, both nationally and internationally, especially about its tar sands.
Yet Canada's decision not to have a G8 environment ministers' meeting is hardly a surprise, said John Bennett, executive director of the Sierra Club Canada.
"When you are at the bottom of the pile, it's really hard to get any lower," Mr Bennett said.
Despite this, there is "an urgent need to deal with the global climate change," he said, and "our leaders have a moral responsibility to look out for the future and not just the present."... Read more »
Industry observers are asking the National Energy Board to delay a hearing into policies for drilling offshore oil wells in the Arctic until a cause can be determined for the ongoing blowout and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Monday was the deadline for responses into the Gulf oil disaster and the impact it might have on Canadian drilling in the Beaufort Sea, where the NEB is being asked to reconsider requirements for drilling same-season relief wells in the event of a blowout.
The board last week requested that participants, which include BP Canada, Imperial Oil, Shell Canada and ConocoPhillips, in addition to the territorial government and various environmental groups, comment on the Gulf spill and ongoing response efforts in the context of operating in the Arctic.
But the majority of respondents said it would be appropriate for the NEB to suspend the hearing until the causes of the Gulf matter were determined.... Read more »
CALGARY - Hearings into offshore drilling rules in the Arctic should be put on hold until the causes of a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico are determined, a handful of oil companies told the federal energy watchdog Monday.
The National Energy Board was reviewing its policies for drilling in the Beaufort Sea when an oil rig exploded off the Louisiana coast on April 20, spilling an estimated 757,000 litres of oil into the Gulf per day.
"Given this very tragic incident in the Gulf of Mexico, we've asked the parties, 'what do you think we should do about this proceeding?'" said NEB spokeswoman Sarah Kiley.
The Deep Horizon rig, owned by Transocean Inc., was drilling a well for BP PLC when a blast occurred, killing 11 people. Both companies are also active in the Arctic.... Read more »