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ARCHIVED - What's Happening With the CEPA Review?

An Update from the CEPA Office

September 23,1994

1. Standing Committee Schedule

The House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development has reconvened, as of September 20,1994. They met that day to discuss the process of the CEPA review over the next few months and on September 21 with Resource Futures International to discuss with them their role as advisors to the Committee. Martin Boddington, as the departmental liaison to the Committee, attends each meeting and prepares a Daily Synopsis of the proceedings. Copies of the synopses are available (see Section on Document Access). Also, another issue of "Let's Talk CEPA" is currently being published and will contain the Fall Agenda for the Committee with tentative dates for all witnesses who will be appearing and the Committee's proposed travel schedule.

2. Document Access

To facilitate easy access to the documents being prepared in the CEPA Office, an electronic Bulletin Board System (BBS) has been set up and is now operational. The access number is 819-997-3547. You will be prompted by a menu driven program once you've logged on and provided some basic information for the system. The documents which are available on line include the CEPA Annual Reports, "Let's Talk Green", the Issues Overview Paper, full texts of the Issue Elaboration Papers and Synopses of the Issue Elaboration Papers, "Let's Talk CEPA", "What's Happening With the CEPA Review?", the Daily Synopses of the Committee meetings and Committee Circulars. We are hopeful that the availability of these documents in an electronic medium will cut down on the number of paper copies we have to distribute. With this in mind, please notify the CEPA Office if you want your name removed from our mailing list for paper copies of the Issue Elaboration Papers. The BBS allows you to leave messages for the CEPA office about any of the documents or any other issue related to the CEPA review. Staff review these on-line messages daily and respond to them as quickly as possible.

Environment Canada is also setting up a conference, named on the Web Network and CEPA Review will be one of six topics on that conference. The same documents will be available on this conference in the near future and any of you with Internet access will be able to view the documents there and download them as you require.

3. Issue Elaboration Papers

Three more Issue Elaboration Papers have been published and are being distributed this week. They are:

  • Inspector's Powers
  • Community Right to Know
  • Environmental Emergencies

4. Harmonization

The Lead Representatives Committee met in Ottawa September 13 to 16 to discuss the general provisions of the Environmental Management Framework Agreement, monitoring and environmental assessments. With respect to the EMF, much progress has been realized but there is still some concern regarding the text in the "Principles" section and still no consensus on the definition of the word "national". In " Monitoring", the definitions have been significantly re-worked and the Committee is approaching agreement on that aspect. The roles are now being discussed and will be reviewed at the next meeting in Toronto meeting on September 30, 1994. In the discussions on environmental assessment it was agreed that licensing and approvals would be dealt with under another function. In Toronto, it will be discussed along with the enforcement function, not as part of enforcement but only to decide where it should fit. Significant progress was also reached on the "Environmental Assessment" function with the concept of one "project-one process" being favoured.

In Toronto there will be further discussion on the general provisions of the EMF and initial discussions on the next two functional areas: enforcement and international agreements.

The Deputy Ministers are meeting in Winnipeg and, on harmonization, they will be provided with the following information: status report, a preliminary presentation on the draft of the EMF, the definitions of monitoring and environmental assessment, a description of the roles under those two functions, a summary of the issues of licensing and approvals, enforcement and international agreements and a draft consultation plan.

5. Note

An office consolidation of the Act has been published and copies are now available from the CEPA Office.

Work is continuing on the development of the departmental position and it is recommended that you review the Issue Elaboration Paper(s) and evaluate the options presented in those to determine what best suits your requirements for program delivery and a renewed CEPA. Comments and suggestions should be directed to the CEPA Office. A draft paper will be circulated for review in the near future.

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