l call the meeting to order.
Welcome, everyone, to the 45th meeting of the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development.
We are honoured today to have Bob Hamilton, the deputy minister of the Department of the Environment, and Mr. Alan Latourelle, chief executive officer with Parks Canada. They've been asked to come here because of recent appointments.
Welcome, gentlemen. We look forward to your presentations and also to your answering some questions from the committee.
We will be hearing from the witnesses from 3:30 to 4:30, and then the committee will suspend and the steering committee will go in camera.
I want to read to you from O'Brien and Bosc, our procedural bible. Pages 1011 to 1013 describe the order in council appointments. This is how the committee is going to deal with this, and the portion that I'm going to read to you will provide some guidance in our questioning. As you consider what we hear from these gentlemen, and as you prepare some questions, keep in mind what is stated on page 1012:
If the committee decides to call the appointee or nominee to appear, it is limited by the Standing Orders to examining the individual's qualifications and competence to perform the duties of the office sought. Questioning by members of the committee may be interrupted by the Chair, if they attempt to deal with matters considered irrelevant to the committee's inquiry. Among the areas usually considered to be outside the scope of the committee's study are the political affiliations of the appointee or nominee, his or her contributions to political parties, and the nature of the nomination process itself. Any question may be permitted if it can be shown that it relates directly to the appointee's or nominee's ability to perform the duties of the office.
Please keep that in mind as you prepare questions.
Again, thank you, gentlemen, for coming. Each of you will have up to 10 minutes to present, and then we'll open questions.
We will begin with Mr. Hamilton. You may proceed.