Articles 2019

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Granting Lake Erie Environmental Rights: Will it work?

  • April 26, 2019
  • David McRobert and Bianca Salive

This article considers the recent bill of environmental rights that one city granted to Lake Erie. It examines the history of granting legal rights to nature, as well as arguments for and against. While reluctant to dismiss granting nature legal rights as largely a façade, the authors conclude that more complex regulatory solutions premised on cooperation between multiple stakeholders seem more likely to deliver a viable, long-term solution for the Lake.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

Supreme Court of Canada Decision in Redwater: Early implications

  • March 30, 2019
  • Melanie Gaston, Janice Buckingham, Emily Paplawski

The decision in Redwater Energy Corporation (Re) may, for now, resolve the uncertainty regarding the end‐of‐life obligations owed by an AER licensee debtor in an insolvency proceeding. This article describes the likely consequences of the decision for the federal insolvency regime, energy industry, debt financing, and directors of oil and gas companies.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

Insolvency and Environmental Law Collide: Supreme Court of Canada rules in favour of Alberta energy regulator in Redwater decision

  • March 30, 2019
  • Tamara Farber and Sherry Kettle

The SCC’s decision in Orphan Well Association v. Grant Thornton Limited says there are end-of-life remedial obligations associated with a bankrupt’s non-productive wells that have to be addressed. These remedial obligations are a prioritization of the use of the bankrupt’s assets for compliance with its regulatory obligations to clean up under the terms of its licenses.This article provides an overview of the impact of the decision on insolvency professionals and secured creditors.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

A Guide to Cannabis Waste Management Under Canada's Environmental Laws

  • March 30, 2019
  • Oliver Moore and Jason Worobetz

In 2018, the Cannabis Act came into force and introduced a federal regulatory regime to control the licensing and production of cannabis. However, the Act is largely silent as to the environmental obligations of licensed cultivators and processors (“licensees”). Licensees currently operate in a complex and overlapping environmental regime with significant potential liability. This article provides an overview of a licensee’s key obligations in regard to cannabis waste management.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

Ontario’s Proposal to Address Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Industrial Emission Performance Standards

  • March 30, 2019
  • John Georgakopoulos, Joanna Vince, and Madiha Vallani,

Secured creditors should engage with the debtor, environmental and insolvency professionals as quickly as possible to protect their investment in collateral. Secured creditors will also need to consider whether it makes sense to risks of regulatory orders if they commence an insolvency process as there is a risk that there will be no distribution to creditors after satisfying environmental obligations.

Environmental Law, Natural Resources and Energy Law, Student Forum

The Implications of the Proposed Changes to and Ultimate Repeal of the Toxics Reduction Act, 2009

  • February 04, 2019
  • David McRobert

The Ontario Toxics Reduction Act, 2009 (TRA) provided cost-effective benefits that were distinct and broader in scope than the federal Chemicals Management Plan under CEPA. The TRA had potential to make large reductions in toxic discharges over time, particularly if more of its provisions were brought into force. Despite this, however, Ontario proposed to repeal the TRA by the end of 2021. Doing so, significant transparency in toxics reduction could be lost, as well.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

Ontario’s Cap and Trade Cancellation Act: Recommendations to the Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks

  • January 03, 2019
  • Carissa Wong and David McRobert

This article provides an overview of the limitations of the Cap and Trade Cancellation Act, 2018 (the “CTCA”) and recommendations for its implementation in 2019 and beyond. It discusses the public consultation process leading to the enacted CTCA as well as the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks’ compliance with the Environmental Bill of Rights.

Environmental Law, Student Forum
Climate Change Regulatory Update: The “Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan” — More carrots, fewer sticks and a dash of sunlight

Climate Change Regulatory Update: The “Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan” — More carrots, fewer sticks and a dash of sunlight

  • January 03, 2019
  • Liane Langstaff and Erin Farrell

On November 29, 2018, the Government of Ontario released its plan, "Preserving and Protecting our Environment for Future Generations: A Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan". The Plan provides Ontario's response to the federal government's carbon pricing backstop and touches on multiple environmental issues, including water pollution, greenspace, waste management and litter. This article focuses on those parts of the plan that address greenhouse gas emissions and other types of air pollution.

Environmental Law, Student Forum

What Level of Information Does A Proponent Need To Start An Environmental Assessment?

  • January 03, 2019
  • Stan Berger

What level of information does a proponent need to start an EA? This question was addressed in Carhoun and Sons Enterprises ltd. v Canada (Attorney General) . A regulatory authority has considerable discretion when exercising its decision-making authority to issue authorizations under the CEAA when a project proposal is submitted. Early referral of an incomplete application would mean completed applications would have to await processing of incomplete applications to their detriment.

Environmental Law, Student Forum