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In the spring of 2016, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development launched a review of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA). This week, the Committee tabled its Report: a hefty document entitled Healthy Environment, Healthy Canadians, Healthy Economy: Strengthening the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The Report makes key recommendations to strengthen and improve the CEPA, and as there have been no substantial reviews or changes to the Act since 1999, we are excited and encouraged by this development. The world is constantly evolving, and it's crutial that our legislation evolve with it so that Canada's environmental laws remain responsive to current scientific knowledge and public needs. 


Halifax, NS - Sierra Club Canada Foundation and East Coast Environmental Law are hosting a panel discussion on the case to stop the Digby Quarry and implications of trade agreements on our ability to protect the environment.

Last year, Sierra Club Canada Foundation and East Coast Environmental Law joined the legal battle to stop Bilcon from collecting $100 million from the Canadian government because a NAFTA Tribunal found that the US company had been treated unfairly in their efforts to start a quarry on Digby Neck. This case - which brings environmental assessment and our ability to stop environmentally destructive projects into question - is now making its slow way through the courts.

Meanwhile, US President Trump has pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and opened up NAFTA for re-negotiation, and Canada has begun consulting with Canadians on a new deal. Our panel will discuss the original and implications of the battle to stop the Digby Quarry, and offer expertise on opportunities for positive reform in the context of NAFTA re-negotiations.


Ben Beachy, Senior Policy Advisor for the Sierra Club US Responsible Trade Program

Janet Eaton, Trade Policy Advisor, Sierra Club Canada Foundation

Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director, East Coast Environmental Law


WHEN: Tuesday, June 20, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

WHERE: Room 104, Weldon Law Building, Schulich School of Law, 6061 University Ave, Halifax, NS

Interviews with speakers available upon request.



Gretchen Fitzgerald, National Program Director, Sierra Club Canada Foundation

Mobile: 1-902-444-7096 / Email:- [email protected]



Capping CarbonJoin us for the sixth and last session of the Capping Carbon | Trading Talk panel series on Thursday, June 29th, from 6:00-7:30 PM in the Ondaatje Auditorium (McCain Building) at Dalhousie University.

Panelists Meinhard Doelle, Kate Ervine, and Stephen Thomas will discuss their visions for a cap-and-trade system for Nova Scotia, followed by a Q&A session and discussion with the public. 

Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director of ECELAW, will be moderating.

This event is free of charge, and all are welcome.

Can't make it in person? Watch it livestreamed via Facebook Live on the Ecology Action Centre's Facebook page.



HALIFAX, May 26, 2017 — The private prosecution by Harrietsfield resident Marlene Brown took another step forward today as the numbered company 3076525 Nova Scotia Limited was served with a summons, and service is being undertaken for 3012334 Nova Scotia Limited and the individual Roy Brown.

The private prosecution was initiated on April 26, 2017, and includes charges of violating sections 67 and 132 of Nova Scotia’s Environment Act. Section 67 prohibits the unlawful release into the environment of substances that cause or may cause an adverse effect, and section 132 mandates compliance with orders from the Minister of Environment. To lay the charges, Ms. Brown turned to Canada’s Criminal Code, which allows citizens to prosecute alleged lawbreaking.

This is the first time that private prosecution has been used in Nova Scotia to enforce environmental laws. On May 18, 2017, a provincial court judge considered the proposed charges in a pre-investigation hearing. The hearing confirmed that the charges could in fact be laid, and that formal summonses would be issued to 3076525 Nova Scotia Limited, 3012334 Nova Scotia Limited, and Roy Brown.

Residents of Harrietsfield have been living with contaminated drinking water for years, and Marlene Brown is determined to see the environmental laws of this province enforced. The East Coast Environmental Law Association and environmental lawyer Jamie Simpson are providing legal support and representation to Ms. Brown.


For more information, contact:

Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director 902.670.1113
East Coast Environmental Law Association [email protected]

Jamie Simpson, Barrister and Solicitor 902.817.1737
Juniper Law [email protected]

Marlene Brown [email protected]
Harrietsfield, NS

Elections are a time to discuss opportunities and take leadership. 

On Thursday, May 16th, candidates for Nova Scotia's 2017 provincial election will be debating key environmental issues.

Event Details

May 16, 2017 | 10:00 – 11:30 AM
6350 Coburg Rd., University of King’s College
New Academic Building, Alumni Hall
Together with Sierra Club Canada Atlantic Chapter and Ecology Action Centre, ECELAW is presenting a public environmental issues debate.
The event will be moderated by Dr. William Lahey, President of the University of King’s College and former Deputy Minister of Nova Scotia’s Department of Environment.
Candidates will be asked to debate healthy communities, environmental rights, climate change, sustainable transportation sector, coast and wilderness protection, and to state their position on other environmental priorities. Candidates are invited to table after the event, and to take questions from the public and the media.
Lisa Roberts – Nova Scotia New Democrats, Halifax Needham
Robert Batherson – Nova Scotia Progressive Conservatives, Halifax Citadel-Sable Island
Iain Rankin - Nova Scotia Liberals, Timberlea-Prospect 
Jessica Alexander – Green Party of Nova Scotia, Deputy Leader
Atlantica Party – invited, TBC
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