An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts

Sponsor

Status

Second reading (Senate), as of Dec. 7, 2018

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Summary

This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

Part 1 enacts the Impact Assessment Act and repeals the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012. Among other things, the Impact Assessment Act

(a) names the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada as the authority responsible for impact assessments;

(b) provides for a process for assessing the environmental, health, social and economic effects of designated projects with a view to preventing certain adverse effects and fostering sustainability;

(c) prohibits proponents, subject to certain conditions, from carrying out a designated project if the designated project is likely to cause certain environmental, health, social or economic effects, unless the Minister of the Environment or Governor in Council determines that those effects are in the public interest, taking into account the impacts on the rights of the Indigenous peoples of Canada, all effects that may be caused by the carrying out of the project, the extent to which the project contributes to sustainability and other factors;

(d) establishes a planning phase for a possible impact assessment of a designated project, which includes requirements to cooperate with and consult certain persons and entities and requirements with respect to public participation;

(e) authorizes the Minister to refer an impact assessment of a designated project to a review panel if he or she considers it in the public interest to do so, and requires that an impact assessment be referred to a review panel if the designated project includes physical activities that are regulated under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act, the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Resources Accord Implementation Act and the Canada–Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act;

(f) establishes time limits with respect to the planning phase, to impact assessments and to certain decisions, in order to ensure that impact assessments are conducted in a timely manner;

(g) provides for public participation and for funding to allow the public to participate in a meaningful manner;

(h) sets out the factors to be taken into account in conducting an impact assessment, including the impacts on the rights of the Indigenous peoples of Canada;

(i) provides for cooperation with certain jurisdictions, including Indigenous governing bodies, through the delegation of any part of an impact assessment, the joint establishment of a review panel or the substitution of another process for the impact assessment;

(j) provides for transparency in decision-making by requiring that the scientific and other information taken into account in an impact assessment, as well as the reasons for decisions, be made available to the public through a registry that is accessible via the Internet;

(k) provides that the Minister may set conditions, including with respect to mitigation measures, that must be implemented by the proponent of a designated project;

(l) provides for the assessment of cumulative effects of existing or future activities in a specific region through regional assessments and of federal policies, plans and programs, and of issues, that are relevant to the impact assessment of designated projects through strategic assessments; and

(m) sets out requirements for an assessment of environmental effects of non-designated projects that are on federal lands or that are to be carried out outside Canada.

Part 2 enacts the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, which establishes the Canadian Energy Regulator and sets out its composition, mandate and powers. The role of the Regulator is to regulate the exploitation, development and transportation of energy within Parliament’s jurisdiction.

The Canadian Energy Regulator Act, among other things,

(a) provides for the establishment of a Commission that is responsible for the adjudicative functions of the Regulator;

(b) ensures the safety and security of persons, energy facilities and abandoned facilities and the protection of property and the environment;

(c) provides for the regulation of pipelines, abandoned pipelines, and traffic, tolls and tariffs relating to the transmission of oil or gas through pipelines;

(d) provides for the regulation of international power lines and certain interprovincial power lines;

(e) provides for the regulation of renewable energy projects and power lines in Canada’s offshore;

(f) provides for the regulation of access to lands;

(g) provides for the regulation of the exportation of oil, gas and electricity and the interprovincial oil and gas trade; and

(h) sets out the process the Commission must follow before making, amending or revoking a declaration of a significant discovery or a commercial discovery under the Canada Oil and Gas Operations Act and the process for appealing a decision made by the Chief Conservation Officer or the Chief Safety Officer under that Act.

Part 2 also repeals the National Energy Board Act.

Part 3 amends the Navigation Protection Act to, among other things,

(a) rename it the Canadian Navigable Waters Act;

(b) provide a comprehensive definition of navigable water;

(c) require that, when making a decision under that Act, the Minister must consider any adverse effects that the decision may have on the rights of the Indigenous peoples of Canada;

(d) require that an owner apply for an approval for a major work in any navigable water;

(e)  set out the factors that the Minister must consider when deciding whether to issue an approval;

(f) provide a process for addressing navigation-related concerns when an owner proposes to carry out a work in navigable waters that are not listed in the schedule;

(g) provide the Minister with powers to address obstructions in any navigable water;

(h) amend the criteria and process for adding a reference to a navigable water to the schedule;

(i) require that the Minister establish a registry; and

(j) provide for new measures for the administration and enforcement of the Act.

Part 4 makes consequential amendments to Acts of Parliament and regulations.

Elsewhere

All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Votes

June 20, 2018 Passed 3rd reading and adoption of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
June 20, 2018 Passed 3rd reading and adoption of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
June 19, 2018 Passed 3rd reading and adoption of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (previous question)
June 11, 2018 Passed Concurrence at report stage of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 11, 2018 Failed Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (report stage amendment)
June 6, 2018 Passed Time allocation for Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
March 19, 2018 Passed 2nd reading of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
March 19, 2018 Passed 2nd reading of Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts
Feb. 27, 2018 Passed Time allocation for Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:15 p.m.
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NDP

Cheryl Hardcastle NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Mr. Speaker, I certainly cannot argue with the fact there is much distorting of the truth here. I really want to talk to the hon. member about the last Parliament, when the Conservative government did remove or gut the environmental assessment process. It also removed almost all of the protections of our waterways. That is a fact that can be looked up.

Then the Liberal government promised that it was going to restore those things. As we see with Bill C-69, it has really fallen short of the mark. Bill C-69 has done nothing. It does nothing to reverse these changes, which the Liberals promised they would do.

Do the Conservatives still believe that waterways and lakes do not need any protection? Is that what I am hearing—that we do not need any protections for water?

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:20 p.m.
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Conservative

Tom Kmiec Conservative Calgary Shepard, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to add my voice to this debate, obviously in opposition to the bill before us.

I will begin as I always do, because I want to get it in early, with a Yiddish proverb: “Misfortune binds together.” That is how a lot of Calgarians feel, especially in my riding.

Bill C-69 is simply more misfortune piled on other ill-advised decisions by the government that have hurt constituents and energy workers in my riding. They have spent a lifetime getting experience, an education, and then pursuing a career they were hoping would last their entire lifetime. This is something they were passionate about, producing energy in a responsible and ethical way, which they will now not be able to do.

I have been told repeatedly by executives, industry, and energy workers, including a constituent of mine, Evan, a few days ago, that when Bill C-69 passes Parliament, it will put an end to all future major energy infrastructure projects. No company will put forward major projects again, because the process will be much too complex, involve too many criteria, and will be too complicated, with too much political risk associated with satisfying a minister in order to reach the completion date of just the permitting process. The CEO of Suncor has said publicly that this will put an end to investment in the energy industry. The CEO of Sierra Energy has said exactly the same thing. Therefore, misfortune binds together.

I will explain other things that bind together as a result of this particular piece of proposed legislation, which that would damage the opportunity of energy workers and their families to continue working in this very successful sector.

We should be very proud of this sector of the economy, because we have been exporting the R and D, innovation, commercialized products and services from it for a long time, alongside the product that we export to our friends down south. Even though we have had difficulties negotiating a successful NAFTA renewal, they are still our friends, and we are still trying to make them understand that at the end of the day, our success is their success.

We often hear government members say that the environment and the economy go hand in hand. The Liberals are making it seem like it is a zero-sum game: one unit of the environment gained is one unit of the economy lost. It is zero-sum, and there are no two ways around it. When we look at Bill C-69, that is evident. The Liberals are trying to gain many more units of environment, and we are going to be losing out on the economic side, based on commentary by both energy workers and executives, who are simply saying that there is no way that they can invest in the Canadian economy, hire energy workers in Canada, in Calgary and Alberta, with these types of rules in place.

On the misfortunes I talked about, there is the carbon tax, for instance. Often in this chamber, I hear members say things like, “We should refine it and upgrade it where we mine it, where we extract it out of the ground”. Well, the highest carbon taxes are paid by refineries and upgraders. It is a GHG-intensive industry.

Do we say the same thing to farmers who produce wheat, that we should upgrade it and refine it here? Do we say that to the farmer who produces canola? Do we say that to the farmer who produces big lentils? Maybe we should force all farmers to produce soup. They should not be allowed to export lentils outside Canada. The same idea, the same drive that says we should never export any type of bitumen or oil out of the country until it is refined and upgraded to the highest level product, could be applied to our agricultural sector.

I have heard repeatedly from energy workers that the tanker ban off the B.C. coast is damaging, because it sends a signal that there is a tanker ban now. Actually, it is just a pretend ban because it just moves tankers 100 kilometres farther off the coast to an area where there already is tanker traffic, which is going to continue as long as it does not stop in a Canadian port. However, it sends a signal that those types of workers and that sector of the economy are not wanted anymore by the government.

On the misfortune, there is a close electoral alliance between radical environmentalists, their foreign financiers, and the future electoral prospects of the Liberal government. That is the case. We know it to be true. The Liberals' success in the 2015 election was closely linked to their making promises on the environment that they absolutely could not keep. They made those promises fully knowing they would never be able to keep them. The misfortune continues.

Twice already, the Prime Minister has said he would like to phase out the oil sands. Every single time the Prime Minister says that, the first thing I get by email and phone from Albertans in my riding is, “He has done it again. He said it again.” The last time he said it was at the Assemblee Nationale in Paris.

Many workers question the sincerity of the Prime Minister when he says that he wants this sector to succeed, which is supposedly why he expropriated Kinder Morgan and purchased its pipeline for $4.5 billion. Workers do not trust him. They do not believe him when he says it. They think he is speaking from both sides of his mouth. He is saying one thing to one crowd and something completely different to another crowd. They do not trust him. However, it is their misfortune that he is the Prime Minister right now.

Bill C-69 increases the number of criteria that will be considered during the regulatory process. What logically happens is that before a company even puts in an application to consider a major new energy infrastructure project, they will do their research and due diligence. That will add months and years to the pre-regulatory process. Before even applying, one has to have more information to prove to the regulator that one meets all of the new criteria. Embedded in Bill C-69 is the opportunity for the minister to say “no” at multiple stages of the process.

I have heard Liberal caucus members say how great the bill is and that shortened timelines give certainty. The bill does no such thing because it will increase the number of criteria and datasets that one needs to collect to prove one's case.

This is exactly where I am going to come to my last point of why energy east was cancelled. Energy east and the company's executives and energy workers said they had no way of meeting the new requirements of downstream and upstream emissions. To collect that vast sum of information and provide it to the government was impossible. The company made the only wise decision on behalf of its shareholders and abandoned the permitting regulatory process. There was no other choice. However, that was a political decision by the government. The government is responsible for that and nobody else. The business decision that drove driving Kinder Morgan out of the country, which led to the government expropriating the company and purchasing the pipeline, was the same type of decision-making process Trans Canada had to use on energy east. Those decisions are deeply connected.

Obviously, I will be voting against this bill. The last point of data I want to provide is that under the government, we have seen thousands of kilometres of pipeline cancelled, whereas under in the previous government, we had thousands of kilometres of pipeline finished.

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:35 p.m.
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NDP

Richard Cannings NDP South Okanagan—West Kootenay, BC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his speech, and especially for his Yiddish proverb. We all wait for that with bated breath each time he rises.

We have heard a lot of concern from the Conservatives about the excessive powers the minister would have to intervene at any stage of the impact assessment process and to put a stop to it, or create an extra process.

I am wondering if the member could comment on the fact that it was the Conservatives who initially gave the minister and cabinet that power with the National Energy Board. Previously, National Energy Board decisions were final, but the previous Conservative government gave that final say to cabinet, and now those members are concerned that the Liberals have run with this and made it rampant throughout Bill C-69 and will put it into law. Could he comment on that?

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:35 p.m.
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Conservative

Tom Kmiec Conservative Calgary Shepard, AB

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member both for his question and his appreciation of Yiddish proverbs. We sometimes share them in the lobby.

Some ministerial accountability for the decisions Liberals make and the activities of the department should be expected by the House of Commons. It should be an expectation. Excessive amounts of ministerial oversight, such as an ability to overrule or redirect decisions and impose one's own personal political views on a process or individual projects, is the wrong way to go. The balance between having just enough regulatory and ministerial oversight and too much burdensome regulation with ministerial discretion is the balance that we are trying to find, and it is not in Bill C-69.

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:35 p.m.
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Conservative

Todd Doherty Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud to rise in response to Bill C-69, the government's environmental and regulatory bill, one that is supposed to be revolutionary. This just brings us to another long list of broken promises that the Prime Minister made when he campaigned in 2015 as the member for Papineau at the time. He made some great promises to Canadians.

We heard a lot about sowing the seeds of fear, that Canadians had lost confidence in some things like our environmental assessment plan. The groups that were promoting that had a sole purpose. There was a lot of talk about foreign-funded groups and how they had influenced elections, both on this side of the border as well as the other side of the border recently.

We know very well that during the 2015 election, and I know because I was one of the candidates who was targeted, groups were targeting Conservative members of Parliament. They were talking about how damaging Mr. Harper was to our environment. We heard people say how we were fearmongering with respect to Bill C-59. If we looked at it and followed where the dollar started, these groups started in other jurisdictions, and perhaps not in Canada.

What would be the sole purpose for those groups to sow the seed of fear or perhaps put doubt in the minds of Canadians in the industry or in the government of the day. It would be to really shake up the economy. Why would they do that? Probably because the money they get comes from big oil or big energy groups in the U.S. This is the fact. We know this. To some extent, the Prime Minister, the Liberals, and perhaps the NDP have bought into those groups. I know about the NDP candidate who I ran against in my region, the one who had probably the best photography team I have ever seen. Again, my riding was one of those targeted because ridings they thought they would win, but I proved them wrong.

Let us talk about the growing list of broken promises, and this is so relevant to Bill C-69.

The Prime Minister talked about a small deficit of $10 billion at that time, and the budget would be balanced. There is a record and a history with this. He also said that under his government, the Liberals would be the most open and transparent government in Canadian history. There is a smattering of applause on the other side, but we know it is not true. When he created the mandate letters, he said that the ministers would be more accountable and more open to Canadians. He also said that he would let the debate reign, yet today we are in the 41st closure of debate.

During the campaign, the member for Papineau said that under his government the Harper government's way of doing omnibus bills would be in the past, that it would never happen again. Today, we are speaking to a 400-page bill.

We know the Prime Minister is not really very happy. He is not a very strong champion of our energy sector. We know this from one of his very first speeches to the world, when he said that under his government Canada would be known more for our resourcefulness rather than our resources. We know he has gotten himself into a little trouble for some of the comments he made on the world stage, when he said that he wished the energy sector could be phased out a little faster. We also know he got himself into trouble when he went into Alberta, during a time when we were facing some terrible issues, to speak to the out-of-work oil workers. There is that famous clip where a gentleman asked “What am I going to do? I'm out of work. I don't know whether I'm going to have a home. I don't know how I'm going to feed my children”. What was his comment? “Hang in there”.

The Liberals hated our Navigable Protection Act. The reason I bring this up is because the fisheries, oceans and Canadian Coast Guard committee, FOPO, studies some of the changes to legislation brought forward by government. The Liberals said that Prime Minister Harper had a war on the environment, and the changes he made to the Navigable Waters Protection Act were because the Conservatives did not care.

The Liberals like to bring in academics, NGOs, and environmental groups. Witness after witness, when asked to provide proof if any of the changes from 2012 to the Fisheries Act and Navigable Waters Protection Act would cause any harmful death or damage to our waterway, not one witness could provide proof. In fact, one of our hon. colleagues was part of the group that wrote the changes to the legislation. He talked about why some of these navigable waterway regulations were changed. He said that it was because of our farmers. If farmers had a drainage ditch that had been washout and repairs had to be made, whether to accommodate their livestock or their crops, it took a lot of time, waiting to get that done. Also, if a municipality was isolated because a road had been washed out, there were a lot of challenges in getting the repairs done.

I could go on and on.

The Prime Minister and all of his ministers like to stand and with their hands on their hearts, they pledge they will consult with Canadians from coast to coast to coast. They tell us that every Canadian will have a say. We know the consultations are not true. In fact, they are shutting down debate.

As I like to do every chance I get, I want to remind folks on the other side, and all Canadians, that the House is theirs. Shutting down debate means the 338 members of Parliament who were elected to be the voices of all Canadians do not have their say. They are not able to bring their constituents' voices to Ottawa. The Prime Minister, his cabinet, the other Liberals want to bring the voice of Ottawa to those communities. We know that the only voice that seems to matter is the Prime Minister's voice.

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 5:50 p.m.
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Whitby Ontario

Liberal

Celina Caesar-Chavannes LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member spoke about the Stephen Harper government and how it was accused of fearmongering and sowing doubt. The Conservatives are still doing that.

The hon. member spoke about the economy and jobs and how the ministers needed to be accountable. Under this government, we have had the fastest growth in the G7. Over 600,000 jobs have been created by Canadians. We have a robust oceans protection plan. We have Bill C-69. We have a $1.3 billion investment in biodiversity and conservation.

What would the hon. colleague across the way say to his constituents, who have benefited from the fact that our government has taken the growth of the economy and the environment hand in hand?

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 6 p.m.
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Conservative

Luc Berthold Conservative Mégantic—L'Érable, QC

Mr. Speaker, we have just very clearly seen that members on this side of the House want to talk about bills. We want to talk about Bill C-59. We want to talk about Bill C-69. All the parliamentarians on this side of the House want to express their views. Unfortunately, the Liberals have cut parliamentarians' speaking time so much that some members have to talk about two bills at once.

I would like my colleague who spoke about both Bill C-59 and Bill C-69 in the same speech to tell me whether he sometimes feels forgotten by the government because he sits on this side of the House. The Conservatives, the NDP, the Bloc Québécois, and the Green Party all represent our constituents here in the House, and they want to hear us speak about all of these bills.

I commend my colleague over here for wanting to speak about two bills, because he knows that we will not have time to talk about all of these things and that the members on the other side of the House often prevent us from speaking. I would like to hear what my colleague has to say about that.

Impact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 7th, 2018 / 6 p.m.
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Liberal

Nick Whalen Liberal St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for his comments. I was in the middle of preparing my remarks on Bill C-59 and I am planning on speaking to Bill C-69 next week. I will have a chance to talk about it at third reading. I may have lost it, I am not sure. I have already said half of what I intended to say on the matter.

At the same time, I know that our sitting hours have been extended because we cannot fit all the members who want to speak into the limited time that the House has to implement all of our legislation and amendments. It is a shame we do not have thousands of hours to speak in the House. These are the hours we have, and we have only four years to fulfill all our election promises.

Now, we are working on fulfilling our promises, and I think I will get a chance to speak on Bill C-69 next week and Bill C-59 a few minutes from now.

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:10 p.m.
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Waterloo Ontario

Liberal

Bardish Chagger LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

moved:

That in relation to Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, not more than five further hours shall be allotted to the consideration of the report stage and five hours shall be allotted to the consideration at third reading stage of the said bill; and

That, at the expiry of the five hours provided for the consideration of report stage and at the expiry of the five hours provided for the consideration of the third reading stage of the said Bill, any proceedings before the House shall be interrupted, if required for the purpose of this Order, and in turn every question necessary for the disposal of the said stage of the Bill then under consideration shall be put forthwith and successively without further debate or amendment.

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:15 p.m.
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Conservative

Robert Sopuck Conservative Dauphin—Swan River—Neepawa, MB

Mr. Speaker, as a member of the environment committee who has been involved in the discussion and debate on Bill C-69, I have never been so appalled in my entire life at how bad this particular bill is.

For example, Chris Bloomer, the president of the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, likened Canada's regulatory environment to a toxic regulatory environment.

Recently Don Lowry, past president and CEO of Epcor Utilities, wrote a piece in the Edmonton Journal on June 5:

Investor flight from energy sector is a national embarrassment

Over the last few years, a thicket of regulatory approvals and processes, both provincial and federal, have crept into place, effectively suffocating through delay and denial anything getting timely approval.

As someone with an environmental background who has worked in pipeline assessments, I can assure the minister that every single pipeline in Canada is built to the highest environmental standards.

Why is the minister piling unnecessary regulations on the Canadian energy sector and denying Canadians the economic opportunity that they need to build this country?

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:15 p.m.
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Ottawa Centre Ontario

Liberal

Catherine McKenna LiberalMinister of Environment and Climate Change

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member and all members of the committee for their very thorough review of Bill C-69 and the many thoughtful amendments.

The committee heard from over 80 witnesses and reviewed over 150 submissions over two months, and the quality and scope of the amendments speak to the rigour with which they reviewed the bill. I am very pleased to say our government is supporting these amendments.

We need to do better. Canadians elected us because they wanted to make sure we demonstrated that the environment and the economy go hand in hand. With Bill C-69, we knew we needed to rebuild trust that was sorely lacking because of the Conservatives' actions in gutting our environmental assessment process, so I am very pleased that we have come together and are going to be able to rebuild trust, because it is so critical that we get good projects going ahead after a thorough environmental assessment.

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:15 p.m.
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NDP

Alistair MacGregor NDP Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, BC

Mr. Speaker, here we go again with time allocation.

Now that I have the minister in the House, I have a question for her. Last week the minister and her government voted in support of Bill C-262, an act to ensure that the laws of Canada are in harmony with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The member for Edmonton Strathcona moved roughly 25 amendments at committee to make sure that this bill actually lives up to what the Liberals did last week, and every single amendment was voted down by the Liberals. She now has several motions at report stage that seek to bring this bill in harmony with the UNDRIP.

Will the minister be consistent with her vote last week and support these amendments to make sure that Bill C-69 lives up to the provisions of what she voted for in voting in favour of Bill C-262, yes or no?

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:20 p.m.
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Liberal

Catherine McKenna Liberal Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to talk about Bill C-69. While we might not always agree on every point, it is important to note that the committee passed a number of opposition amendments and there were a significant number that received unanimous support. I would like to highlight some of those.

There was a key amendment proposed by the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands that was supported by committee members. It clearly reflected the government's strong commitment to science, and it was clearly very important. Liberal members also took into account NDP amendments in drafting the amendments. The member opposite spoke about reflecting the importance of the UNDRIP. That was really key.

Many amendments in relation to indigenous peoples were passed. This bills clarifies that indigenous knowledge would be considered and would not be limited to traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples. A number of amendments would strengthen the protection of indigenous knowledge. We know this is very important to indigenous peoples.

There were many other amendments that I am sure I will have the chance to talk about.

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:20 p.m.
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Liberal

John Aldag Liberal Cloverdale—Langley City, BC

Mr. Speaker, I would first like to commend the minister for the excellent job she has done. She appeared before committee on Bill C-69 twice and then returned for the main estimates this past week. There has been unparalleled access to the minister as we have discussed this bill, and there have been many fantastic amendments put forward. The bill itself strongly addresses the many concerns that arose. The reason we lost trust in the environmental assessment process arose from the previous government's actions in meddling in CEAA 2012.

One of the areas the committee looked at, which the House will see with the changes coming forward at report stage, deals with timelines. I would ask the minister to speak to the significant improvements in timelines that will be dealt with through Bill C-69. Canadians and the House would benefit from those comments.

Bill C-69—Time Allocation MotionImpact Assessment ActGovernment Orders

June 6th, 2018 / 7:25 p.m.
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Conservative

Kevin Sorenson Conservative Battle River—Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, my New Democratic colleague said best when he said “Well, here we go again.”

In the last election, the Liberals said that they would never move time allocation, that they would not move closure, that they would not shut down debate. However, this is the 40th time that they have done it.

The bill before us would have a massive effect on my constituency. I would say that from about 2000 to 2007, when I met with my rural municipalities, without exception the number one concern they had was the navigable waters act. They understood that if they were to replace a culvert or if they were to do any type of construction, they would have to call the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, or what they called the “fish cops”. It meant massive red tape and it took forever to happen. This was their number one frustration.

To all those municipalities out there, the Navigable Waters Protection Act would be brought back under Bill C-69. There is not a rural municipality that will like it. Again, the Liberals are doing it, and they are shutting down debate. They are limiting us in being able to represent our constituents, and that is the shame.