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Enforcement

Shell Canada charged for Chemical Valley spill

In January of 2013, Shell Canada allegedly spilled "flare liquids", similar to gasoline, from its refinery in Sarnia. People in a nearby First Nation (often affected by Chemical Valley spills) experienced odours, irritation and illness. After waiting until the end of the two year limitation period, the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change has charged Shell with [...]

Supreme Court hears Chevron Ecuador pollution appeal

Can foreign pollution judgments be enforced in Canada? The Supreme Court of Canada has heard arguments on the attempt by Ecuador pollution plaintiffs to enforce their $9 plus billion Ecuador judgment against Chevron's Canadian assets, in Chevron Corporation, et al. v. Daniel Carlos Lusitande Yaiguaje, et al., Supreme Court of Canada File No. 35682. Although substantial pollution [...]

Less environmental enforcement = more private prosecutions?

When governments do little to enforce environmental laws, generally or in particular areas, private citizens and environmental groups sometimes try to fill the gaps with private prosecutions. These cases are burdensome and expensive to handle, but can make a significant difference, as Ecojustice's light pollution case did to make mirrored buildings safer for birds. But [...]

Largest Canadian environmental penalty: $7.5 MM

Environment Canada obtained the largest environmental penalty ever imposed in Canada for breaches of the Fisheries Act and Metal Mining Effluent Regulations by a mining company: $7,500,000. The breaches occurred in 2011 and earlier under the old Fisheries Act, before massive changes to the law in 2012. Bloom Lake General Partner Limited pleaded guilty to 45 charges, resulting [...]

$320,000 fine for former waste processors

A big fine has been imposed on a former waste processor and the two individuals who ran the company for environmental offences, according to the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change. According to the MOECC, 2R Services Inc. and its Directors were fined for failing to comply with ministry approvals for a hazardous waste processing site and [...]

INTERPOL environmental crimes unit

International environmental wildlife and pollution crimes are attracting growing attention from INTERPOL, partly because many of them are committed by organized crime. For example, in response to the recent surge of ivory tracking, INTERPOL formed a  dedicated environmental crime team in Africa. As InterPOL puts it: "Environmental crime is a serious and growing international problem, and one which takes [...]