1 Environmental Law Alert Blog | West Coast Environmental Law

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Environmental Law Alert Blog

Through our Environmental Law Alert blog, West Coast alerts you to environmental law problems and developments affecting British Columbians. It is the public voice of our Environmental Law Alert unit which is a legal “watchdog” for BC’s environment.

If you have an environmental story that we should hear about, please e-mail Andrew Gage. Also, please feel free to comment on any of the posts to this blog – but please keep in mind our policies on comments.

9 March, 2017

MiningWatch needs your help to ensure accountability for the Mount Polley tailings pond disaster. In late 2016 the mining watchdog launched a private prosecution (with the help of our Environmental Dispute Resolution Fund), but the federal government is now trying to stay the charges. You can help by signing this petition asking Prime Minister Trudeau, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, and Fisheries Minister Dominic Leblanc to make sure the prosecution proceeds.


9 February, 2017

Last December, the Expert Panel appointed by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to review federal environmental assessment (EA) processes completed its cross-Canada tour. With the panel wrapping up its consultations, many people are asking, what now?

Staff Counsel Anna Johnston lays out some of the next steps we can expect in the EA review.

8 February, 2017

Last week, the BC NDP released its “Clean Growth Climate Action Plan.” Unfortunately for both the NDP and public debate on climate policy, much of the media coverage focused less on the plan, and more on a leak of the plan by the BC Liberals. The BC Greens apparently have not released their climate strategy as yet, although it sounds as if a policy is under development. In the meantime, we bring you a score card comparing the BC Liberal and BC NDP climate plans.



2 February, 2017

On January 25, 2017 West Coast and over 50 other organizations from around BC wrote to 190 local governments asking them to take action to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for its role in causing climate change. If you agree, it’s time for you to get involved too – by asking your Mayor and Council and other local government officials to respond to, and act on, this letter.

1 February, 2017

These simple and profound words, “Water is Sacred,” have become a call to action in North Dakota. Since April 2016, thousands of people have gathered there to protect water from “the Black Snake,” the Dakota Access pipeline proposed to bring oil under the Missouri River.

After a year of work on the RELAW project, West Coast's Maxine Hayman-Matilpi reflects on her own relationship and responsibilities to care for the sacred gift of water.

31 January, 2017

On November 29, 2016, the federal government announced that it will introduce legislation in spring 2017 to entrench an oil tanker ban on the north coast of British Columbia, and it provided preliminary details on the content of the legislation. In our new publication, West Coast addresses the federal government’s proposal for oil tanker ban legislation in more detail and evaluates its strengths and weaknesses.


25 January, 2017

If you value parks as a way to protect biodiversity, there are two chances for you to speak up: Parks Canada is currently seeking public feedback on parks through its website, Let’s Talk Parks, and regulations for a proposed new marine protected area (MPA) for the Scott Islands are also open for comment.

17 January, 2017

West Coast's new Marine Campaigner Maryann Watson explains why she's looking forward to bringing together the important scientific information needed to make sound policy decisions and protect the marine environment.

5 January, 2017

Check out our short video to meet some of our talented lawyers and see what we're most excited about for 2017!

19 December, 2016

At West Coast we’re buckling down to protect the Salish Sea, the global atmosphere, and future generations – a journey that will take us through 2017 and likely well beyond.  My colleague Eugene Kung has described the new phase of efforts to stop the Kinder Morgan expansion. At the same time, we are also looking at opportunities to achieve better coastal management, generally. Even without Kinder Morgan there are gaps to fill.