Project Law Blog

Tag Archives: Environmental Assessment

Federal Environmental Assessment – What’s Next – A Tiered Approach

Posted in Aboriginal, Consultation, Environmental, Mining, Oil & Gas Law, Project Development, Project Permitting, Public Utility, Regulatory, Regulatory Compliance
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This is the most recent blog in a series of posts which discuss the proposed recommendations set out by the Expert Panel in its report entitled Building Common Ground – A New Vision for Impact Assessment in Canada, The Final Report of the Expert Panel for the Review of the Environmental Assessment Processes (the “Report”),… Continue Reading

Federal Environmental Assessment – What’s Next – Stages of Project Impact Assessment

Posted in Aboriginal, Consultation, Environmental, Mining, Oil & Gas Law, Project Development, Project Permitting, Public Utility, Regulatory, Regulatory Compliance
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This is the most recent in a series of posts which discuss the proposed recommendations set out by the Expert Panel in its report entitled Building Common Ground – A New Vision for Impact Assessment in Canada, The Final Report of the Expert Panel for the Review of Environmental Assessment Processes (the “Report”). This entry… Continue Reading

Federal Environmental Assessment – What’s Next? – Proposed New Triggers

Posted in Aboriginal, Consultation, Environmental, Mining, Oil & Gas Law, Project Development, Project Permitting, Public Utility, Regulatory, Regulatory Compliance
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Last week we summarized the recommendations set out by the Expert Panel established by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change in its report entitled Building Common Ground – A New Vision for Impact Assessment in Canada, The Final Report of the Expert Panel for the Review of Environmental Assessment Processes (the “Report”). One of… Continue Reading

Government of Canada Proposes Methodology for Estimating Upstream GHG Emissions in Major Project Review

Posted in Aboriginal, Consultation, Environmental, Mining, Oil & Gas Law, Project Development, Project Permitting, Regulatory, Regulatory Compliance
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Late last week, the Government of Canada released a proposed methodology for estimating upstream GHG emissions from proposed oil and gas projects undergoing federal environmental assessment. This comes on the heels of the Government’s announcement in late January of its new guiding principles for project review, one of which included assessment of “direct and upstream… Continue Reading

Province Releases Kitimat Airshed Study

Posted in Environmental, Oil & Gas Law, Project Development, Project Permitting
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On July 18, 2014 the Province of British Columbia released the long-awaited Kitimat Airshed Study (though completed on April 25, 2014, the study was not previously released pending review). The study is an independent assessment intended to assist the Province’s regulatory decision-making process by providing information that will be used to ultimately determine how many… Continue Reading

The Supreme Court of British Columbia Defers to the Discretion of the Environmental Assessment Office

Posted in Environmental
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On May 17, 2013 the Supreme Court of British Columbia released its decision in David Suzuki Foundation v. British Columbia (Ministry of Environment), 2013 BCSC 874.  The case concerned Holmes Hydro Inc.’s plans to build hydroelectric plants on 10 tributaries of the Holmes River. The issue was whether the plan required environmental assessment under section… Continue Reading

B.C. Mining Project Denied

Posted in Environmental, Mining
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B.C. Environment Minister Terry Lake and Energy, Mines and Natural Gas Minister Rich Coleman refused to issue an Environmental Assessment Certificate (“EAC”) to Pacific Booker Minerals Inc. for its proposed Morrison Copper/Gold Mine project near Smithers. The decision by Ministers Lake and Coleman is in accordance with the recommendation of the Executive Director of the… Continue Reading

BC Court of Appeal Clarifies Reviewable Projects Regulation

Posted in Project Development
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On June 29th, 2012, the British Columbia Court of Appeal handed down its Reasons for Judgment in Friends of Davie Bay v. Province of British Columbia (EAO), 2012 BCCA 293. The case dealt with the interpretation of the term “production capacity” under BC’s Reviewable Projects Regulation and has important implications for project development in BC…. Continue Reading

Federal Environmental Assessment Panel Established for New Prosperity Gold-Copper Mine Project

Posted in Environmental, Mining
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On May 9, 2012 the federal Minister of Environment announced the establishment of a three-member Review Panel for the New Prosperity Gold-Copper Mine Project.  The panel is established pursuant to s. 33 of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (“CEAA”), and its Terms of Reference are posted on the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency’s website. The Terms… Continue Reading

Significant Revisions Ahead for Federal Environmental Laws

Posted in Environmental
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On April 26, 2012, the Federal Government introduced Bill C-38, which implements various components of Canada’s 2012 federal budget announced on March 29, 2012 and in its April 17, 2012 Plan for Responsible Resource Development.  The most significant change included in the bill is the complete repeal and replacement of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act… Continue Reading

Environmental Assessment Streamlining Federal Government Initiatives

Posted in Environmental
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On April 17, 2012 the federal government announced its Plan For Responsible Resource Development, setting out further details on steps to implement proposals for streamlining the federal environmental assessment (“EA”) process.  This Plan follows on the heels of the federal budget and the Statutory Review of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, which both suggested that… Continue Reading

Environmental Assessment – Improving the Process

Posted in Environmental
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On March 13, 2012, the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development issued recommendations for improving the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) process (click on Print Format for the complete report). The recommendations focus on: improving timeliness; decreasing duplication with provincial processes; improving aboriginal consultation processes; and improving outcomes. Expectations are that some of the… Continue Reading

First Nations Injunction Delays Taseko Geotechnical Drilling

Posted in Aboriginal, Mining
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On December 2, 2011, the members of the Xeni Gwet’in First Nation Government and the Tsilhqot’in Nation successfully obtained an injunction against Taseko Mines to carry out geotechnical drilling in support of its preparation of an environmental assessment of its revised New Prosperity Mine Project (see Taseko Mines Limited v. Phillips, 2011 BCSC 1675).  The… Continue Reading

Supreme Court of Yukon Dismisses Liard First Nation Application to Quash Selwyn Project Decision Document

Posted in Aboriginal
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In Liard First Nation v. Yukon Government and Selwyn Chihong Mining Ltd., 2011 YKSC 55, the Yukon Supreme Court dismissed a challenge to the Yukon Director of Mineral Resources’ (“Decision Body”) decision to allow the Selwyn Resources Underground Exploration Program (“Project”) to proceed by confirming an environmental assessment which concluded that the Project was not… Continue Reading

Federal Government Accepts Prosperity Mine Federal Panel Recommendation

Posted in Environmental, Mining
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On November 2, 2010 Federal Environment Minister Jim Prentice announced that federal authorities would not grant required federal approvals for the proposed Prosperity mine near Williams Lake in interior British Columbiadue to the potential for adverse environmental impacts associated with the project.  The Prosperity project underwent environmental assessments under provincial legislation and the Canadian Environmental… Continue Reading

Red Chris Appeal to be heard by Supreme Court of Canada

Posted in Mining
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On December 18, 2008, MiningWatch Canada(“MiningWatch”) was granted leave to appeal the decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in MiningWatch Canada, et al. v. Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, et. al  to the Supreme Court of Canada.  The decision relates to the environmental assessment that has been carried out to date on the Red… Continue Reading

Federal Court Casts Uncertainty on Federal Environmental Assessment Process

Posted in Mining
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On September 25, 2007, a Federal Court Trial Judge in MiningWatch Canada v. Canada (Fisheries and Oceans), 2007 FC 955 allowed an application by MiningWatch Canada challenging the legality of decisions/actions taken by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (“DFO”) and Natural Resources Canada in conducting the environmental assessment of a proposed copper and gold… Continue Reading

BC Supreme Court Restricts Duty to Consult with First Nations to Consultation with Elected Representatives

Posted in Aboriginal, Environmental, Mining
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Recent Canadian court decisions have established there is a duty held by the federal and provincial governments to consult with First Nations. The Supreme Court of British Columbia’s decision in Red Chris Development v. Quock et al 2006 BCSC 1472 provides direction for project proponents regarding the identification of the appropriate aboriginal groups with which… Continue Reading