House of Commons Hansard #146 of the 41st Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was public.


Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

1:20 p.m.


Jonathan Genest-Jourdain NDP Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for her question.

If people are protesting and taking action in 2014, it is because they do not have any other recourse and the only thing they can do is to band together.

Opposition to resource extraction is not widespread. There is an industrial initiative set to begin soon in Port-Cartier. Although it does not involve the extraction of natural resources, it is a progressive project. We are going to give the company the benefit of the doubt and believe that it has good intentions.

However, given what we are seeing and what we have seen to date, history has taught us that, all too often, natural resource extraction and mining projects open the door to abuse. Companies work behind closed doors. They work in a vacuum. They make sure to talk to just one group. No information is shared. Environmental reports are given only to government. People are left in the dark. That is why people are protesting and these protests can end up interfering with a company's plans and slow down its project. If economic development is based on fraudulent practices and a lack of public consent, it will eventually hit a wall.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

1:25 p.m.

Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar Saskatchewan


Kelly Block ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to join the debate on Motion No. 533. This motion proposes that natural resource projects undergo a broader consultation with first nations and citizens in areas affected by development activities. While I am sure that the member has good intentions with this motion, he must be unaware of the extremely rigorous consultation process already in place for resource projects.

I would like to take this opportunity to outline our review process for the House. Canada currently has three organizations managing review processes at the federal level. These are the National Energy Board, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. All three operate at arm's length from the government and they all address the concerns raised in this motion. Invariably, the reviews they conduct involve a rigorous and comprehensive environmental assessment. This requires technical analysis of potential environmental impacts of a project, as well as measures to avoid or mitigate impacts on affected communities.

In every case, project proposals brought forward by proponents are scrutinized through a rigorous and transparent process. All regulatory reviews are supported by high-quality science, technical knowledge, and expertise from numerous federal department and agency experts. Evidence brought to the review bodies' attention by all participants is tested for its veracity and comprehensiveness to ensure that final decisions are based on hard facts, not public sentiment. This is important.

While the NDP is all too willing to make important decisions based on ideology, our Conservative government relies on scientific and fact-based reviews to inform our decision-making. In fact, it was the Leader of the Opposition himself who said:

There are some things that some people would send to the NEB that we would say no to.

Canadians deserve better than that, which is why our government only makes decisions once an independent scientific review is complete.

Members of the House can rest assured that there is ample opportunity for Canadians to take part in these review processes. Indeed, members of the general public and aboriginal groups who are directly affected by projects or who have relevant expertise are encouraged to participate. For example, community and aboriginal traditional knowledge are explicitly recognized in the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, or CEAA, from 2012.

There are multiple avenues for individuals, communities, and aboriginal groups to express their concerns in these reviews. These include public comment periods, engagement and consultation meetings, and letters of comment and public hearings. Of course, participation requires more than just an expression of support or opposition: people's views need to be substantiated with evidence.

Furthermore, there are provisions in the legislation governing all three regulatory processes to promote transparency. This ensures that Canadians have access to the necessary information to reach an informed opinion on a project. Take the example of the CEAA registry. It is an Internet site that contains key information about environmental assessments conducted under the act. This information is available to the public and ranges from background technical documents, environmental assessment reports, and comments filed by the public to records regarding any follow-up program or mitigation measures to be implemented.

As hon. members can see, there is truly a transparent process in place for Canadians.

I would like to underline that all projects are subject to regulatory permitting, monitoring, and compliance activities following an environmental assessment. Ultimately, independent organizations like the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, the National Energy Board, and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission make recommendations and decisions in the Canadian public interest. This is essential in order for the government to reach a balanced and informed decision regarding whether Canada would be better off with or without a development project.

The key is balance. The review process considers environmental, economic, and social considerations related to a potential natural resource based project.

I know all members on this side of the House have not forgotten that Canada's natural resources sector is a significant contributor to national, provincial and territorial economies, enabling Canadians to enjoy high living standards. We know that if the NDP had its way, it would shut down resource development entirely.

This is how the NDP's plan would affect our Canadian economy.

The natural resources sector provides nearly 20% of our GDP and supports 1.8 million jobs. All of this activity generates royalties and revenues for governments to provide important social programs, from health to education to pensions for Canadians. When we see the dramatic economic benefits of natural resource development for Canada as a whole, it becomes clear that the impacts of a project extend well beyond a local area to the country at large. Our government understands this and Canadians know they simply cannot trust the NDP to look out for their best interests.

Topics as important as responsible resource development, which generates economic benefits, while protecting the environment and accommodating the needs of affected communities, cannot be reduced to a popularity contest. The exhaustive process of considering and balancing evidence based on science could be rendered irrelevant if there were a test of public willingness. Such a test could essentially provide a local veto over the project, regardless of the recommendations resulting from a fact based, comprehensive review process. In essence, this would negate evidence and expert testimony provided in favour of public opinion.

This proposal is poorly defined in the motion and it simply cannot be assessed and challenged in the same way as detailed evidence of potential environmental, economic and social impacts, the foundation of the review process we have in place right now.

Canada already has an extremely rigorous regulatory regime in place to consider major resource projects. These projects are subject to comprehensive review processes based on environmental, economic and social considerations. Recommendations on projects are then made by independent regulators, based on the entirety of evidence collected.

The process is established through legislation. It includes the assessment of environmental effects, timelines for governing review and decisions, and the participation of interested and affected parties. As we have always said, projects will only proceed if they are proven to be safe for the environment and safe for Canadians, based on science.

For this reason, our government cannot support this motion.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

1:30 p.m.


Mark Eyking Liberal Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak on Motion No. 533, which calls on the federal government to subject natural resource development projects to a broader consultation with first nations and local communities. One would think that should be a given, but apparently it is not.

In Nova Scotia, we have 13 Mi'kmaq first nations communities. One of the smaller ones is in the Annapolis Valley. It has almost 300 people. The largest one, Eskasoni, is in my riding. It has over 4,000 people. In Nova Scotia and in Cape Breton, first nation people make a big contribution not only to our economy and to our well-being but also to our whole social fabric.

We have seen time and time again that the Conservatives do not have a good relationship with first nations communities. A core responsibility of the federal government is to facilitate a meaningful consultation on resource development projects. Over the long term, this is the only way to leverage our natural resources in a way that is sustainable, maximizes economic opportunities, and strengthens first nations and local communities.

I will give two examples of major events in my riding that show how first nations communities have taken more charge of events and have received more out of the natural resources around them.

The first example relates to Donald Marshall, Jr. The House may not remember him, as he is not with us anymore, but he was wrongfully committed to jail for murder. He was later cleared. When he was in jail, he did a study on all the treaties and rights of first nations. When he came out of jail, he went eeling. He was catching eels for his family. He was charged, because apparently that was not allowed by legislation, but he fought that charge and he got his treaty rights.

He made a big change for many first nations people and first nations communities, not only in Cape Breton but in Nova Scotia and across Canada. In the areas of fisheries, forestry, and natural resources, first nations have treaty rights to own or participate in the resources in their communities.

The second example had to do with the Sydney tar ponds, an extremely toxic area that was located in my riding. We had to clean it up. It was a $400 million cleanup. When we embarked on that, the Liberal government was in power, but then there was a good Conservative government in Nova Scotia, under the leadership of Premier John Hamm. We worked together with them. He was what we would call a red Tory. We worked well with him, and we got $400 million to clean up the tar ponds.

My point is that the first nations community stepped up to the plate. The first nations community got a 10% carve-out from that project, so they were part of the cleanup process. They had their people educated and trained in trades to help us clean that up. They benefited.

My point is not only that they deserve a part of the resources but also that they can step up to the plate when asked to. They are able to get the big jobs done that we need to do.

The Conservative government has proven time and time again that it is not interested in input from anyone else. Everything comes down from the Prime Minister's Office. It comes down from the top. Conservatives do not work with others.

There is a need to consult on issues such as resource development. The message from the Conservatives has been clear: people are either with them or against them. There is an old saying that when the only tool in the tool belt is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. That is exactly the way they operate. That is the approach we are seeing when it comes to the government's approval process.

Let us reflect on the Conservatives' track record on progress with resource development. After eight years under the Conservatives, we are further behind on creating sensible policies. The government has failed on one of the most important infrastructure projects of our generation. Many people from my riding in Cape Breton work out west on the oil patch. When we see the Keystone XL pipeline not going anywhere, it is another example of how the Conservatives are not getting the job done. It is because of their relationship with others.

Needlessly, the Conservatives have these bad relationships. We see it with the country of origin labelling.

I am on the agriculture committee, and the beef and pork producers are losing the market in the United States, which is all due to bad relationships with our biggest trading partner. Especially now, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and the Minister of International Trade should be working with the new senators, congressmen and governors to get our beef and pork moving there, but that is another problem with the Conservatives' relationship with others.

Many people do not know about this, but there is what is called preferential access to the perishable agricultural commodities act. To put it plainly, right now when produce farmers from Canada sell into the United States, the Americans have a bond in place so if Canadian growers do not get paid, it ensures they do. What happened? Over a year ago, the Americans said that it needed the same in Canada, which makes sense. If they are protecting our growers there, why is Canada not protecting their growers here? Nothing was done by the government to help our producers. Now we have a stalemate, which is another example of a bad relationship where things do not get done.

For average Canadians, the government appears to be chasing a different project every time they turn around, rather than fostering better relationships with our key partners in opening up new markets in a sustainable way. All of this contributes to a lack of confidence in Canadians on the government's transparency and accountability.

The responsible development of our natural resources is clearly in the national interest, but it must be done through building partnerships among industry, first nations and civil society. A core responsibility of the federal government is to facilitate meaningful consultation on resource development projects. Over the long term, this is the only way we will leverage our natural resources in a way that is sustainable, maximizes economic opportunity, and strengthens the first nations and local communities. We have seen that with the cleanup of the tar ponds, which should be a template for other projects right across our country.

In improving natural resource projects, the federal government has a crucial responsibility to balance economic development, energy security, and environmental and socio-economic factors to arrive at a decision that is in the best interests of first nations and Canadians. It sounds so practical. The Liberals believe we need to create a regulatory regime that is balanced, one that creates growth and protects the environment. We can do both at the same time.

Unfortunately, as mentioned in the House in the last hour or so, under the Conservatives, the National Energy Board has become kind of an advisory board to cabinet and the PMO. The Liberals recognize this and are fully aware that first nations communities desire greater accountability and transparency from the federal government.

Moving forward, natural resource development must adhere to the most stringent environmental assessments and reviews, and must fully respect aboriginal and treaty rights. It takes a lot of hard work and leadership to pull this off, but when it comes down to resource development, it is crucial to build partnerships among industry, first nations and civil society.

I would like to remind Canadians that the Conservatives have gutted environmental protection and oversight in the interest of resource development at all costs. Resource development that is not done in full consultation and collaboration with impacted aboriginal communities is just not responsible, and it is unconstitutional. Aboriginal communities rightfully expect governments to involve them in the early stages of a project's planning and decision making. There is the odd good Conservative, and it is too bad that when one goes over to that side, he or she drinks the Kool-Aid, and things do not go very well.

At the end of the day, we have to recognize our first nations people. They were here first. Many times they know how to treat our resources properly. They want to move forward with our economy. Working in partnership with impacted aboriginal communities is not just a question of legal obligation, but a tremendous opportunity. We must return to the original respectful and collaborative partnership with our aboriginal communities, including recognition of their inherent treaty rights.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

November 21st, 2014 / 1:40 p.m.


Claude Gravelle NDP Nickel Belt, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am very happy today to stand in the House to speak to the motion by my hon. colleague from Manicouagan. The people of his riding can be proud of his passionate representation on their behalf. Along with our colleague from Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik—Eeyou, the member is an outstanding champion for his own Inuit and first nations communities.

I am on my second term as MP for Nickel Belt, but it was in this Parliament, with the election in 2011 under our former leader, Jack Layton, that our party saw the election of so many new young and gifted members from Quebec. This motion today is his commitment to put people and their communities and their rights first and foremost when it comes to natural resources projects.

I come from Nickel Belt and Greater Sudbury, home of the largest nickel basin in the world. I worked for 34 years for Inco, a mining company. I have seen the good and the bad that mining can do in a region. I absolutely support public consultation and real efforts to get public support for these projects. I will address that shortly.

First, as chair of the 20-MP NDP mining caucus, I will say a few words about our strong support for mining when it is done right. My party and I recognize the importance of mining in our communities. In 2013, over 380,000 jobs were in mineral extraction, smelting, fabrication and manufacturing in our country. Mining is an economic and investment driver for Canada, paying $71 billion in taxes and royalties to Canadian governments in the past decade. I am told the mining sector is the largest employer of aboriginal people.

My region of Greater Sudbury is now being called “Canada's mining superstore”, given all of the technology, research and innovation in the Greater Sudbury region. The Mining Association of Canada estimates that upwards of $160 billion in mining projects are presently proposed in Canada, including multi-billion dollar investments in Nunavut; Northwest Territories; B.C.; Alberta, Saskatchewan; Manitoba; Ontario, especially with the Ring of Fire; Quebec; and Newfoundland and Labrador. That underlines the importance of the motion before the House today.

The member speaks often of social licence for those natural resources projects. In plain language, we want people and their communities to have current and future generation concerns addressed before they say yes to these projects. They want to see that the mining companies are taking seriously their responsibilities and understanding all of the implications of mining or other exploration. These holes in the ground, the blasting and the excavation also have consequences for drinking water, our health, our noise, our pollution and much more that touches on the daily lives of citizens. When companies move into a community with their well-paying jobs, they are welcome.

There can be other social and health consequences that are not so good. More and more, I hear mining companies talking about corporate social responsibility, making progress in this regard. That is a good thing. My leader met with the Mining Association of Canada representatives this week. We urged the companies to continue to work on social licence and to continue to work on this corporate social responsibility. We know from news stories about bad behaviour abroad from some Canadian companies. We also have to be vigilant that here at home we hold our companies to higher standards too.

Cases in point are Osisko's Malartic mine, the tensions triggered by the prospect of uranium mining on the north shore in Quebec; the controversial oil pipeline and tanker port projects in British Columbia and Quebec, including the one in Cacouna; and the Mine Arnaud project in Sept-îles, which dealt a blow to the local social climate. I meet with mining company officials, and I hear more and more of their work and their commitment to this responsibility.

Advance public consultation is a positive and innovative measure because it makes it possible for three things to happen.

First, it puts the public at the heart of the decision-making process. Civil society stakeholders have long called for real, direct public consultation and for the public's wishes to be considered in natural resource development projects. This motion would put the public at the heart of the decision-making process as opposed to the public being told about it after the fact.

Second, advance public consultation helps ensure that the federal government's historic commitments to members of the first nations are fulfilled. The federal government must respect first nations' rights on traditional territories and must submit development initiatives to members of the communities affected.

Third, consultation would ensure that economic development is in sync with the public's vision for the land. If the public's wishes are respected, it will help appease the communities that are struggling to make decisions about contested economic development projects, which would thus create a good environment for investment and for promoting better projects that protect the environment and the communities.

The motion fits well with the NDP's basic position on the environment:

Protecting the environment as a common good by creating a legal framework to ensure that people have the right to live in a healthy environment with access to natural spaces.

We say here today that we want what Canadians want in their communities on these projects: transparency, consultation, and consent.

I have introduced a number of private member's bills regarding foreign ownership transactions, the kind my region of Sudbury has experienced. My bills call for this same transparency and public consultation.

I want to say something about consultation.

I am following very closely the Ring of Fire project in northwestern Ontario. There has been nothing more than a back-and-forth blame game going on between the Conservative government here in Ottawa and the Liberal government in the province of Ontario. Northerners are fed up.

Our first nation communities are reminding those governments, yet again, what the duty to consult actually means. It is more than providing information. It is more than giving an hour's notice of big announcements coming out. It is what the NDP and our leader have articulated clearly: a constitutional responsibility to do full, real, and meaningful consultation.

That is why we support a nation-to-nation approach. At the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada's mega-convention earlier this year in Toronto, my leader made it clear that he supports the Ring of Fire project, if done this way.

Our leader said:

The Ring of Fire project is an important development for families in Northern Ontario today and for generations to come. Unfortunately, Conservative policies have undermined the government's ability to oversee that all social and environmental regulations are being fully understood and addressed.

Citing his cabinet experience in Quebec, he told the mining companies that the Ring of Fire project can only move forward when public confidence and real partnerships with first nation communities are secured. He also underscored the long-standing NDP commitment to deal nation to nation with first nation governments to build relationships that benefit people, business, and the land.

This not a playing of the economy over and against the environment, as we see the current government do. It is finding a way to be both for the economy and for the environment. This is a win-win situation, especially for first nations and other communities. It makes smart business sense, too, as more mining companies are discovering.

The purpose of the motion is to make it mandatory for the government to consult Canadian citizens and first nation members before implementing a natural resource development project on their territory or in their living environment. Public willingness should be a criterion in obtaining a development permit to the same degree as impacts on human health, ecosystem maintenance, employment, and economic development.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

1:50 p.m.


Bob Zimmer Conservative Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am thankful for this opportunity to comment on Motion No. 533 and to reinforce my colleague's comments that much of what it proposes to do is already being accomplished. Indeed, Canadians can take pride and have confidence in our world-class safety standards, which our government has worked so hard to improve in recent years.

We have introduced multiple measures to strengthen the regulatory process for major resource projects. Among the most effective is our plan for responsible resource development, which has led to economic growth, increased environmental protection, and enhanced consultations with aboriginal peoples. This policy is rooted in our commitment to develop our natural resources in an environmentally and socially responsible way. This means ensuring that natural resource development benefits all Canadians, including the aboriginal peoples of Canada.

As a result of our plan, our natural resource sector is among the most stringently regulated in the world. Specifically, we have strengthened environmental protection by ensuring that no natural resource project will receive federal approval unless it is safe for the environment and for Canadians. For the first time, our government has introduced enforceable environmental assessment decision statements. Components of major projects now have to comply with conditions set out in these decision statements; if not they could face tough financial penalties, which I will talk about more in a moment. Our government is also providing federal inspectors with the authority to examine whether conditions set out in an environmental assessment decision statement are met.

As well, we have introduced tough new financial penalties to preventively address contraventions of environmental laws quickly under the National Energy Board Act and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Act, so that larger issues do not arise in the future. Especially important is the fact that responsible resource development has an entire component dedicated to ensuring that consultations with aboriginal peoples are consistent, accountable, meaningful, and timely. For example, consultations with aboriginal peoples are integrated into the new environmental assessment and regulatory processes. We also provide significant funding specifically to support consultations with aboriginal peoples.

We have also designated a lead department or agency as a single crown consultation coordinator for each major project review. This reduces the previous redundant consultations that frustrated many aboriginal communities. Not only that, we also negotiate consultation protocols or agreements with aboriginal groups to establish more clearly what the expectations and level of consultation should be. Better still, we know that resource development cannot thrive without the contributions of our aboriginal peoples. We have taken significant action to facilitate greater participation of aboriginal people in resource projects. This is being accomplished through initiatives such as the major projects management office–west, which we recently set up in Vancouver. The office is working with aboriginal peoples and first nations to ensure their meaningful involvement in assessing and managing the environmental safety of proposed projects.

Therefore, as members can see, our improved regulatory regime for major natural resource projects is not only among the most efficient, effective, and competitive in the world, but is also among the most inclusive, ensuring that there are numerous opportunities for active public participation. As proud as we are of this approach, we are determined to do even better. That is why our government has also addressed safety concerns by implementing world-class pipeline, rail, and tanker safety systems that all Canadians can trust. As just one example, we have given the National Energy Board the necessary resources to double the number of annual inspections of pipelines. The board also doubled the number of annual comprehensive safety audits to identify pipeline issues before incidents occur. The NEB now can issue administrative monetary penalties of up to $100,000 a day per infraction for companies that do not comply with safety and environmental regulations. Ironically, but not surprisingly, that member and the NDP voted against these enhanced pipeline safety measures. To us that does not make sense.

There are more tough measures on the way. We have announced plans to give the board even greater authority so that it can strengthen incident prevention, preparedness, response, liability, and compensation. Even though more than 99.999% of the oil and gas transported on Canada's federally regulated pipelines arrived safely between 2008 and 2013, we are committed to trying to achieve zero incidents.

As more and more energy products are being shipped by rail, our government has also announced measures to improve railway safety and ensure the safe transportation of dangerous goods by rail, including the introduction of new regulations for DOT-111 rail cars. This includes thicker steel requirements, as well as the addition of top fitting and head shield protection.

We also have nine acts of Parliament governing marine safety. These laws complement and reinforce international regulations established by the International Maritime Organization, and we are always working to improve them.

For example, we proposed new regulatory oversight and enforcement capabilities provided under Bill C-3, the safeguarding Canada's seas and skies act. These measures underline that when it comes to transporting our natural resources, whether by pipeline, rail, or tanker, our government will not compromise on public safety or environmental protection.

We all know that some in the NDP are opposed to all forms of resource development for the benefit of Canadians. They are opposed to the building of infrastructure that would create hundreds of thousands of jobs and to projects that would generate billions to fund critical social programs. Further, some would rather see our resources stranded and our legacy squandered. Again, it does not make sense. A lot of jobs come from these projects.

Our government understands the enormous benefits resource development can provide to all Canadians. This is why we have implemented such a rigorous review process for projects and have ensured that local communities and aboriginal peoples can actively participate in and benefit from resource development.

I simply cannot see a need for this motion, when clearly, as I stated, our current regulatory review process is already robust, independent, based on science, and among the best in the world.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

2 p.m.


Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, there is a lot more to be said on this motion.

I certainly commend my colleague for bringing forward the motion and for being a strong force in his Innu community in this place. I appreciate his expertise in criminal law from his practice in that area representing his people very well. I appreciate that he has brought that knowledge to this place and has shared a lot of that knowledge in this motion he has brought forward, which is based on his personal experience and the frustration of his community members regarding having a voice in major energy projects.

The member's motion is essentially calling for the Conservative government to step up to the plate and finally support a genuine process for the engagement of Canadian communities, including first nation and Métis communities, in decision-making on major energy projects. This includes the potential impact on human health, the ecosystem, employment, and economic development.

The member has three key messages that I think are important and that surely everyone in this place would support: that citizens should have a central place in the decision-making process, particularly when projects might impact their health and environment; that there should be respect for the historic commitments made by the federal government to first nation peoples; and that we should ensure that economic development is in tune with citizens' perception of their territory and that they, and not people who live far from the site of those projects, genuinely benefit from that development.

It is very important to note that the call for greater action by the government is not something that just my colleague has raised. It has actually been voiced by the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development. In his report just this fall, he slammed the government. He determined that the federal government has been clearly ignoring its duties to ensure that first nations and Métis are engaged in environmental assessment and monitoring in major energy projects, in particular oil sands projects. The commissioner determined that, first, the government has failed to collect and consider important traditional ecological information. Second, it has ignored its duty to consult. Third, it has made it harder for aboriginals to participate in decision-making on major energy projects impacting first nation and Métis lands, water, and people.

My colleague has raised some skepticism about the concept of social licence, and I think that is a fair comment. Each time we reach some kind of consensus that we need to move forward with, the terms “participation”, “consultation”, “social impact assessment”, and “social licence” often become perverted because those principles are not really applied in good faith. The member's call to the House is that we need to agree that we are genuinely committed to enabling a constructive voice for Canadians in decision-making on major energy projects. We should go beyond the brief mention of a concept and give some reality to it so that it actually includes genuine environmental impacts, social impacts, and local impacts. That consultation should be a precondition in deciding if a project is in the public interest.

We hear members on the other side talk about how we have a perfect review process. They say that all they need to do is consider what is in the public interest. However, what is the public interest? If we are not genuinely considering the issues and concerns of the locally impacted people, how genuinely can we really say we are considering the public interest in making decisions to accept or reject a major energy project?

I look forward to continuing to speak on this at a later date, and I appreciate the time to at least rise briefly in support of my colleague's very important motion in this place.

Citizen Consultation Preceding Natural Resource DevelopmentPrivate Members' Business

2:05 p.m.


The Deputy Speaker NDP Joe Comartin

The hon. member will have six minutes and ten seconds left when the debate on the bill resumes.

The time provided for the consideration of private members' business has now expired and the order is dropped to the bottom of the order of precedence on the order paper.

It being 2:05 p.m., the House stands adjourned until next Monday at 11 a.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

(The House adjourned at 2:05 p.m.)