Canadian Environmental Protection Act: equivalency agreements
Section 10 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA 1999) authorizes the Minister of the Environment to enter into an equivalency agreement with a province, territory or aboriginal government if the Minister and the government of the other jurisdiction agree, in writing, that there are in force under the laws applicable in that jurisdiction:
- provisions that are equivalent to a regulation made under CEPA 1999; and
- provisions similar to sections 17 to 20 of CEPA 1999 allowing for citizens to request investigation of alleged offences.
Where such an agreement has been entered into with another government, the Governor in Council may make an order declaring that the provisions of the CEPA 1999 regulations that are the subject of the equivalency agreement do not apply in the jurisdiction of that government.
The intent of equivalency agreements is to minimize the duplication of environmental regulations. The Minister is responsible for reporting annually to Parliament on the administration of equivalency agreements.
Existing equivalency agreements under CEPA 1999 are listed below.
- An agreement on the equivalency of federal and Alberta regulations for the control of toxic substances in Alberta
This agreement was signed on June 1, 1994 and came into effect on December 28, 1994. The following CEPA 1999 regulations no longer apply in Alberta:
- Pulp and paper mill effluent chlorinated dioxins and furans regulations (all sections),
- Pulp and paper mill defoamer and wood chips regulations (Sections 4(1), 6(2), 6(3)(b), 7 and 9),
- Secondary lead smelter release regulations (all sections), and
- Vinyl chloride release regulations (all sections).
- Alberta equivalency order
- An agreement on the equivalency of federal and Nova Scotia regulations for the control of greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity producers in Nova Scotia
This agreement was signed on May 26, 2014 and came into force on July 1, 2015. On that date, the following CEPA 1999 regulations no longer apply in Nova Scotia:
- Reduction of carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired generation of electricity regulations
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