This week, the Canadian government introduced the
Environmental Enforcement Act (Bill C-16), which would
enhance the enforcement tools in nine federal environmental laws
(including the Canadian Environmental Protection Act,
1999) and establish an administrative monetary penalties
Under Bill C-16, minimum fines for large corporations ranging from
$100,000 to $1,000,000 would be created for serious offences. The
federal government's limitation period for initiating
environmental charges would also be extended from two to five
years. Bill C-16 would create a public registry of corporate
offenders and require corporations to notify shareholders of the
facts relating to the commission of an environmental offence and
the details of the punishment imposed. As part of enforcement
measures, a corporation could also be required to surrender federal
environmental permits used in its operations (potentially impacting
production) and await authorization to reapply.
The most significant initiative under Bill C-16 is the development
of administrative monetary penalties ("AMPs"). Such a
regime would involve issuing tickets to corporations (of not more
than $25,000) for less serious violations of environmental laws,
avoiding the more costly and complex court process. However, as
with Ontario's AMPs regime, this system has been widely
criticized for denying corporations a due diligence defence.
Bill C-16, together with recent federal funding commitments to hire
more environmental enforcement officers and improve technical
support to Environment Canada, is intended to provide a more modern
and effective federal environmental enforcement regime in
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
Ontario's Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change continues to roll out its Climate Change Action Plan with its proposed GHG guide for projects that are subject to the province's Environmental Assessment Act.
The Imperial Oil refinery pled guilty to one offence for discharging a contaminant, coker stabilizer, thermocracked gas, into the natural environment causing an adverse effect and was fined $650,000...
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).