Quebec counterpart, Thomas Mulcair, have agreed to develop a framework on environmental assessment co-operation.
The proposed agreement establishes a formal framework for the two levels of government for projects subject to both the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and Section IV.1, Division I of Quebec’s Loi sur la qualit de l’environnement. The agreement also establishes administrative mechanisms and approaches to collaboration that will assure better co-ordination of their respective environmental assessment processes.
Under the agreement, the governments of Canada and Quebec will be able to exchange information on projects; agree on terms of reference and evaluate the acceptability of projects; and inform each other on their decisions in this regard. The main objective of this agreement is to reduce overall delays caused by parallel environmental assessments, without affecting environmental protection.
Before finalizing the draft agreement, both governments are seeking comments from the public. The public consultation period will last from Dec. 11, 2003 to Jan. 30, 2004.
Copies of the draft agreement can be viewed on the Web site of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca, or that of the Ministre de l’Environnement du Qubec, www.menv.gouv.qc.ca,