Environmental Deregulation in Ontario’s Bill 55 Should be Condemned
Proposed changes to environmental legislation, hidden inside a large budget bill, threaten to weaken protections for endangered species and obstruct the public’s right to participate in environmental decision-making.
Bill 55 also removes the deadline for developing recovery plans for species at risk listed before 2007. With no deadline, there’s little chance that action will be taken to save those species.
The weakening of environmental laws that were designed to protect the health of our lakes, forests and wildlife is deeply disturbing. To do so by circumventing the requirements of the Environmental Bill of Rights through omnibus legislation that denies the possibility for open public debate is very troubling. We thus fully support the recommendation of Ecojustice and the Canadian Environmental Law Association, “that the environmental statutes, particularly those related to species protection, sustainable forest operations, protected areas, lakes and rivers protection, and public lands be withdrawn from the Schedules of Bill 55.”