Big wins for nature and the climate

r1 Celebrating victories for federal enviro law and climate accountability ... r19 JULY 2019 | Donate | Leave a Legacy FacebookTwitter YouTube Instagram DONATE

Dear Paov,

In the past month, we’ve seen our efforts pay off on multiple environmental law initiatives. First, we celebrated the passing of four federal bills that will strengthen Canada’s environmental safety net. Then, city councils in Vancouver and Richmond, BC voted to take action to get fossil fuel polluters to share in local climate change costs. Thank you to everyone who helped make these wins possible!

And don't forget – we’re hiring a new Staff Lawyer to lead our unique environmental legal aid program (deadline extended to July 21). Know anyone who fits the bill? Check out the details here.

What Vancouver Council heard before voting to hold fossil fuel companies accountable On June 27th, the City of Vancouver voted to support a climate accountability motion asking fossil fuel giants like Exxon Mobil and Shell to pay a fair share of the local climate costs caused by their products.

In his latest blog post, Staff Lawyer Andrew Gage reflects on powerful testimony from legal experts, youth and citizens who spoke to Councillors before the motion was passed.
Big wins for nature: New environmental laws will benefit all Canadians Environmental laws in Canada got a major boost last month with the passage of four key federal bills – including a new Impact Assessment Act, changes to the Fisheries Act and Oceans Act, and the long-awaited Oil Tanker Moratorium Act. Read more about these important law reform victories.

Plus, West Coast's Linda Nowlan and University of Calgary Law Professor Martin Olszynski explain how the new amendments to the Fisheries Act strengthen protections for fish habitat by giving regulators, investigators, and enforcement officers better legal tools to do their jobs.
The federal government's paradoxical definition of Indigenous consent The re-approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline came less than a day after the federal government declared a climate emergency. While the irony was a dream for satirists, we were preoccupied by an even bigger contradiction: the government’s bizarre definition of free, prior and informed consent.

With serious concerns around consultation and consent, bias and conflict of interest, Trans Mountain’s legal troubles are far from over. Read the analysis from Staff Lawyer Eugene Kung.
For orcas’ sake, we will not give up the fight against the Trans Mountain pipeline Canada’s latest approval of the Trans Mountain project is a glaring reminder that the 76 remaining endangered orcas of the Salish Sea may still go extinct.

Linda Nowlan joins colleagues from both sides of the Canada-US border to emphasize the need for unilateral cooperation to protect the whales and their habitat from Trans Mountain’s oil tankers.
Pushing for change: People, plastic, producers, and the law Last week, the BC Court of Appeal quashed the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban. With this decision, it’s time to ask BC to enact a province-wide ban on single-use plastic bags. If PEI can do it, so can we!

In this blog post, Summer Law Student Isabelle Lefroy gives us the latest word on plastic laws and what governments in Canada are doing to reduce plastic waste.
One earth, one vote With the federal election approaching this fall, we’re partnering with environmental groups across Canada to launch a new initiative: #OneEarthOneVote.

Will you join the building wave of support and vote for the environment this October? Stand with us and tell our party leaders that you will only vote for a government that will uphold environmental protection, economic justice and human rights.
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The Legal E-Brief is a publication of West Coast Environmental Law Association

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