February 15th, 2018

NDP: Split Bill C-69 on Environmental assessments

Alexandre Boulerice, the NDP Environment Critic, is proposing changes to the bill on the new environmental assessment process. The bill comprised of 364 pages contains a number of measures, but also raises many questions. It is therefore necessary to split the bill to allow for a thorough review of its impacts.

“Many elements in Bill C-69 worry me,” said Boulerice. “For example, the discretionary power the Environment Minister has given herself. What’s the point of having a brand new environmental assessment process if it does not apply to any project? And what if the recommendations that come out of the process aren’t even taken into account in the Minister’s decision?”

In fact, Bill C-69 maintains many of the controversial components implemented by the Conservatives in their 2012 budget, which gutted the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. For example, the Liberals will continue to use the same narrow list of projects that must undergo environmental assessments.

“I hope the government will accept our motion to split the bill to allow for a full review at Committee,” added Boulerice. “Taking into account the implications for evaluating projects, or for failing to evaluate projects, among other things, we need sufficient time and expertise to carefully examine all the elements that will have a major impact on our environment.”