Environmental Law & Policy

Exemptions from federal environmental review for oil and gas projects unjustified, say environmental groups

Ensuring federal assessment of high-carbon projects is critical if Canada is to step up Paris Agreement ambitions at COP 24

OTTAWA – Some of Canada’s largest and most polluting industrial projects may get a free pass on federal review under a new law if the government capitulates to industry demands, warn leading environmental groups. The groups are calling on Canada to expand the list of projects it reviews to ensure that greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental damage from proposed industrial development are minimized.

Op-ed: The federal government's carbon pricing plan will eliminate Alberta's hard-earned climate gains

An op-ed from AEN member Dr. Joe Vipond on the federal government's proposed carbon-pricing policy for the electricity sector:

Sadly, the current federal pricing plan will eliminate many of these gains, and likely make things even worse. Climate and health will once again be jeopardized by coal combustion, at a time when cheap, emission-free alternatives exist. We need to embrace the future of climate action, not cling desperately to the past.

Read the full op-ed in the CBC's Opinion section

Webinar: Climate Accountability in Canada

Nov 22 2018 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

In this webinar, we will dig into some of the ambition-raising asks we’ll be making of the Canadian government as we head into COP24. Our panelists will discuss what an accountability mechanism for the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change might look like and how it can ensure ambition can be raised in the future. We will also explore some of the ways accountability mechanisms have been embedded in climate policy around the world. 


Op-ed: Hold energy industry responsible for clean-up costs

An op-ed from Joshua Buck, Alberta climate program manager at Environmental Defence, on the $260-billion unfunded environmental liability in the oil and gas sector in Alberta:

Albertans have had a long-standing and mutually beneficial bargain with the oil and gas industry. Basically, the deal was, the companies can take Albertans’ resources, practically for free, but in exchange, they’ll create high-paying jobs for Albertans. They’ll create the conditions for a strong economy, low taxes, and a high quality of life.

But it looks like we have been duped. Because there was another, hidden part of the deal: massive clean-up costs that the companies aren’t able to pay. Costs that will likely be left to Albertans to pay, long into the future.

Read the full op-ed in the Edmonton Journal

Regan Boychuk: The (100) Billion Dollar Question

Oct 30 2018 - 6:30pm

Regan will be talking about the little-known but urgent dilemma Alberta faces as a result of insolvent polluters and captured regulators. Public officials have allowed hundreds of billions in unfunded oilfield environmental liabilities to accumulate to crude oil and natural gas industries that no longer turn a profit. But there remains a solution if Albertans can find the political will.

Doors 6:30 PM | Talk 7:00 PM

Cost: $5



AWA Cottage School
455 12 Street NW
Calgary , AB

Conference: Indigenous Solutions to Environmental Challenges

Nov 10 2018 (All day) to Nov 12 2018 (All day)

The conference will use the context of the historic Aguinda v. Chevron environmental case to consider the critical role of judicial remedies for violations of the rights of indigenous and other affected peoples and the leading systemic obstacles to the realization of remedies in particular cases, both in Canada and beyond.


Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity
107 Tunnel Mountain Drive
T1L 1H5 Banff , AB

Environment in the Courtroom: Enforcing Canadian GHG Emissions Laws

Oct 25 2018 - 8:30am to Oct 26 2018 - 3:30pm

The Canadian Institute of Resources Law (CIRL), a federal not-for-profit organization established in 1979, is collaborating with Université Laval to organize a national symposium called Environment in the Courtroom: Enforcing Canadian GHG Emissions Laws. This symposium, funded by Environment and Climate Change Canada, is free of charge and can be attended in person at the Université Laval on October 25 & 26, 2018, or alternatively viewed online as a live webcast on the symposium dates.


Pavillon Alphonse Desjardins, La salle Hydro-Quebec
Université Laval
Quebec , QC

Environmental Rights: The Power and the Promise

Oct 3 2018 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

On Wednesday, October 3, the Environmental Law Students Association, Pembina Institute, Healthy Environment YEG, Environmental Law Centre and the David Suzuki Foundation invite you to a forum to discuss the legal right to a healthy environment as a solution to environmental problems.

Over the past 50 years, environmental rights have become the fastest-growing body of human rights law internationally. We have a historic opportunity to ensure that everyone in Canada has the right to a healthy environment.


Room LC 231
Law Centre, University of Alberta (111 Street & 89 Avenue)
Edmonton , AB

Keepers of the Athabasca Indigenous Water Governance Workshops in Calgary and Edmonton


  • Executive Director, Keepers of the Water
  • Water Advocate for First Nations at a national level
  • Walrus Talks, TEDx talks on Indigenous Water Governance

Exploring pre-contact water laws, agreements, and treaties, while asking the question: can there be an Indigenous Water Governance model for Canada?

Workshop series presented by


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