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Environmental Assessment in Newfoundland

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History of EA in NL. Original Legislation in 1980 with the development of the EA Act and EA ... Develop policy on aboriginal consultation ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Environmental Assessment in Newfoundland


1
Environmental Assessment in Newfoundland
Labrador
  • Environmental Assessment in Federations
  • Current Dynamics and Emerging Issues Conference
  • September 13-15, 2009
  • Ottawa, Canada

2
History of EA in NL
  • Original Legislation in 1980 with the development
    of the EA Act and EA Regulations 1984.
  • Prior to 1980, province participated in FEARO
    process conducted by federal government.

3
Current Legislation
  • Environmental Protection Act 2002
  • Environmental Assessment (Part X)
  • Environmental Assessment Regulations 2003

4
Mission
  • To ensure that when development proceeds, it does
    so in an environmentally acceptable manner.

5
Purpose
  • To protect the environment and the quality of the
    life of the people of the province,
  • To facilitate the wise management of the natural
    resources of the province,
  • through the institution of environmental
  • assessment procedures before and after the
  • commencement of an undertaking that may be
  • potentially damaging to the environment.

6
Environmental Assessment Process
  • A stepwise process that requires proposed
    undertakings that are potentially damaging to the
    environment to be submitted for public and
    government review to enable the Minister or
    Cabinet to determine whether or not they can
    proceed in an environmentally acceptable manner.

7
Environmental Assessment ProcessGoals
  • Promote acceptable development
  • Facilitate project planning
  • Ensure environmental protection
  • Promote informed decision-making
  • Consult with stakeholders
  • Help proponents meet requirements

8
Environment
  • Biophysical
  • air, land, water
  • plant animal life (including human)
  • Socioeconomic
  • social, economic, recreational, cultural and
    aesthetic factors

9
Undertaking
  • An enterprise, activity, project, structure, work
    or proposal that, in the opinion of the Minister,
    may have a significant environmental effect.
  • Includes modification, abandonment, demolition,
    decommissioning, rehabilitation and extension.

10
Undertakings
  • All undertakings as listed in the EA Regulations,
    Part 3, or any undertakings that may be damaging
    to the environment are required to be submitted
    for review.
  • Such include - agriculture, forestry logging,
    mining, electric power generation, waste
    management, hydro developments, roads and
    highways, golf courses, and industrial
    facilities.

11
Environmental Effect
  • A change in the present or future environment
    resulting from an undertaking

12
Steps in EA
  • Step 1 Initial Screening Phase (Registration)
  • Proponent submits copies of a project description
    which is reviewed by provincial, federal
    government departments and CEAA and public (35
    days) and comments and advice is submitted to the
    Minister.
  • Notice of registration in EA Bulletin and on web
    page.

13
Steps in EA
  • Step 2 Analysis
  • Information analyzed by the EA Divisional staff
    (EA Scientists) and recommendation submitted to
    the Executive and Minister.

14
Steps in EA
  • Step 3 Ministers Decision
  • Due 45 days after submission date of
    registration.
  • Minister must decide
  • 1. Release with conditions, if necessary, or
  • 2. Require an Environmental Preview Report, or
  • 3. Require an Environmental Impact Statement

15
Steps in EA
  • EPR based on deficient registration document
    and lacks readily available information needed to
    make informed decision.
  • EIS potential exists for significant adverse
    effects to occur combined with high level of
    public concern.

16
Steps in EA
  • Cabinet can decide
  • 1. Reject the undertaking due to
  • a. unacceptable effects
  • b. against policy or law
  • c. in the public interest
  • 2. Require public hearings on an EIS

17
Fed/Provincial EA Cooperation
  • Why?
  • Some proposals trigger both EPA and CEAA
    therefore the need to submit additional
    information to satisfy legislative requirements.
  • Avoids duplication.
  • Promotes information sharing between departments
    with overlapping mandates.
  • More efficient, less costly for proponents to
    submit one EA document.
  • Public review is more efficient and complete.
  • Ministerial decisions incorporate federal
    requirements and information.

18
Legislative Provisions for EA Cooperation
  • EPA (Section 72) provides authority to enter into
    agreements on EA cooperation with other
    jurisdictions.
  • No formal EA agreement exists between NL and
    Canada.
  • High degree of informal cooperation with federal
    departments exists in NL.
  • EPA (Section 73) provides authority to establish
    joint panels with other jurisdictions.

19
CEAA and EPA
  • Some Contrasts
  • Single decision making body (ENVC) versus self
    assessment regime.
  • EPA process contains legislative timelines at
    every process step
  • EPA triggers based project type as opposed to
    CEAA triggers such as funding, permitting, etc.
  • EPA examines entire project versus limiting scope
    based decision making department.
  • EPA imposes EA fees on proponents to conduct EA
    reviews
  • CEAA has participant funding available on some
    types of EAs to enable public participation in
    EA.

20
Priorities
  • Upcoming participation in the legislative review
    CEAA 2010
  • Develop policy on aboriginal consultation
  • Training in areas such a cumulative effects and
    Regional Strategic EA

21
Environmental Assessments
  • Current
  • 15-20 current projects going through screening
    phase.
  • Lower Churchill Hydro Generation Project
  • Lower Churchill Transmission Line
  • Regional Waste Management Sites
  • Iron Ore projects in northern Labrador
  • Fluorspar mine on south coast
  • Oil Exploration on Northern Peninsula
  • DND Supersonic Training
  • Forest Harvesting Plans
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