Blackout Speakout

Environmental groups in Canada are launching a major online protest against the government’s plans to reform environmental laws as part of its budget implementation bill. Details on the protest – currently planned for June 4th – available here.


  1. David Collier-Brown says:

    Can one legitimatrely say “reform”?
    If one proposes to denigrate something, is it a reform? The word usually means “Make changes in (something, typically a social, political, or economic institution or practice) in order to improve it” (courtesy of Google).

    “Deform” is perhaps harsh, but at least apropos.


  2. Hard to tell.
    According to the CBC, the Minister said “The government will move to a “one project, one review” policy on environmental projects by recognizing provincial reviews, as long as they meet the requirements of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act”. By this I read that, so long as the review undertaken for the provincial government meets the requirements of the federal legislation, that a second review would not be necessary to produce a second report stating the same thing.

    If this is what they are shooting for, then the theory is sound, although the implementation may not be. Look at it this way. Take the hypothetical situation of Ontario and Toronto both having drivers licenses, with the requirements being exactly the same; in order to drive in Toronto you must have a city license. As well, the city test is the same, or even more comprehensive, than the provincial test. So, in this situation, would it not make sense that the province recognize the city test and also issue a provincial license? If the tests covered different things, then by all means the province should do its own testing, since the provincial requirements would not be covered.

    Again, all of this, in the end, comes down to the implementation of the proposed changes. It may turn out to be worse for the environment, or it may be neutral. Only time will tell.