March 14, 2012 – Ottawa, ON – Canada’s nuclear industry is encouraging the Government of Canada to give full consideration to the recommendations on the federal Environmental Assessment (EA) process made in the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development (“the Committee”) Report on the Statutory Review of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA): Protecting the Environment, Managing our Resources.
“Our members are committed to environmental stewardship and are supportive of the EA process, which provides a valuable planning tool, aimed at protecting the land, air and water in the areas where we live and work,” said Denise Carpenter, President and CEO of the Canadian Nuclear Association. “We agree with the Committee’s reported findings that there are long-standing challenges with the implementation of the CEAA and the EA process.”
The Canadian Nuclear Association (CNA) is supportive of the Environment Committee’s efforts to re-focus the EA process on “what matters to the environment.” The Report makes recommendations to remove process steps that add little or no value to the environment, and have the potential to draw attention away from what really matters.
The CNA agrees with the following Report recommendations for improving the EA process:
- removing steps that do not actually affect the environmental outcome;
- applying information from past EAs of fundamentally similar projects;
- delegating powers to a single regulatory authority so that there is one EA by the best-placed regulator; and
- eliminate the need to repeat the EA process due to administrative decisions and minor approvals related to existing licenses.
“Environmental Assessments are an integral part of how Canada’s nuclear industry conducts its business and we have gained considerable insights from carrying them out,” continued Carpenter. “The federal EA process should be more efficient and should lead to improved environmental outcomes. The recommendations have the potential to achieve these goals.”
The full report on the Statutory Review of the CEAA is available on the Committee’s website.
For more information:
Director of Communications
Canadian Nuclear Association