Monday, January 4, 2010

Jim Prentice and John Baird Team up to Create a Possible Nightmare

I posted before about two environmental groups who were taking the government to court because they decided without consent from Parliament to forgo environmental assessments on new projects.

As I stated then, '... many people will say that they were being forced to get the money out the door as soon as possible, so didn't have time for any studies. However, they spent a great deal of time studying how they could direct the stimulus money into improving their political fortunes, while ignoring any notion that the money should go to communities who suffered a greater impact from the downturn.'

Now we learn that the environmental assessment panel has not even met since 2008, and even then conducted no business, so it's pretty clear that that this government has no intention of doing any assessments at all.

And since it would appear that the Canada Action Plan was little more than a PR campaign, by leaving the study to the provinces, if projects get turned down, they will have someone to blame.

They produced the big cardboard cheques and demanded the provinces and municipalities erect huge and expensive signs in their honour. Their job was done.

Tories have ignored environmental assessment panel, member says
By Mike De Souza,
Canwest News Service
January 3, 2010

OTTAWA - A federal panel that advises the government on the environmental impact of new economic development has been left on the sidelines for nearly two years, Canwest News Service has learned. Throughout this time, sweeping changes to regulations have been passed, effectively exempting thousands of projects from mandatory evaluations. `We haven't had any notice that the minister has dissolved the committee, but it's kind of awkward to have a committee that doesn't meet,'' said Gary Schneider, who sits on the panel.

Schneider, the co-chairman of the Environmental Coalition of Prince Edward Island, said the last meeting of the Regulatory Advisory Committee was in the spring of 2008. But, he said, no consultations were held with the panel in 2009, as the government introduced a series of exemptions for new infrastructure projects ...

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