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Environmental Law Alert Blog

Through our Environmental Law Alert blog, West Coast keeps you up to date on the latest developments and issues in environmental law. This includes:

  • proposed changes to the law that will weaken, or strengthen, environmental protection;
  • stories and situations where existing environmental laws are failing to protect the environment; and
  • emerging legal strategies that could be used to protect our environment.

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

Paddling in MB (Travel Manitoba via Flickr)
February 19, 2018

The Canadian government recently introduced Bill C-69, claiming that this legislation delivers on a campaign promise to “restore lost protections, and incorporate more modern safeguards” in several environmental statutes. While media reports focused on changes to environmental assessment and energy law, the Bill also includes major amendments to the Navigation Protection Act – to be renamed the Canadian Navigable Waters Act. 

Bev Sellars and Jacinda Mack, FNWARM
February 15, 2018

On January 30th, 2018, the BC government decided to drop the private prosecution launched by Bev Sellars into the Mount Polley disaster. Through her private prosecution, Bev, a grandmother and former chief of the Xat’sull First Nation, gave the provincial government a second chance to show that BC can enforce its own environmental laws.

RELAW horseback trip on Tsilhqot'in Territory
February 14, 2018

When it comes to implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, lawyers have unique responsibilities; Calls to Action 27, 28, 29 and 50 are particularly instructive.

When it comes to implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, lawyers have unique responsibilities; Calls to Action 27, 28, 29 and 50 are particularly instructive. Today, my colleague Maxine Hayman Matilpi and I reflect on what this means for us as legally trained individuals, our public interest law organization and legal pluralism in Canada.

Seal trapped in plastic (Nels Israelson/Flickr)
February 8, 2018

Global problems – like our plastic-choked seas – need global solutions.

Ceci n'est pas un levier
January 28, 2018

“Regardless of your views on this particular pipeline (we are opposed, in case that wasn’t clear), anyone who thinks their locally-elected government or local First Nations shouldn’t get railroaded by a US corporation just because they have a federal approval should be very concerned about these recent developments.”

Seagull with plastic bag
January 25, 2018

Plastics permeate all aspects of our daily lives. Now plastic pollution plagues the planet. Marine plastic debris is pervasive, persistent, and has grave consequences for marine ecosystems.   

Consider these facts:

Whose Pipeline Is It Anyway?
January 16, 2018

“Politicians grant the permits, but communities grant permission.” – Justin Trudeau

Parliament Hill
January 16, 2018

It has been over two years since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued mandates to a handful of cabinet ministers to review, modernize and strengthen four important environmental laws.

PR review chance card
January 10, 2018

Bio-waste spread on farmland threatens to contaminate local wells. Pesticide spraying by a logging company is destroying bird habitat. Odours and rodents from a composting facility disturb a rural neighbourhood. Logging on steep slopes threatens a community’s drinking water.

Fossil fuel companies and climate change
January 9, 2018

Imagine for a moment that the so-called “war on drugs” focused entirely on addicts, with the manufacturers and sellers of street drugs celebrated as productive members of society who are “just providing a product.”

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