British Columbia to reform Environmental Assessment Process in the fall – by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud ( – March 7, 2018)

The government of British Columbia revealed today the timeline that will guide the procedures to reform the province’s environmental assessment process.

Known by its initials, the EAP is a course of action to predict environmental effects of proposed initiatives, particularly mining and resource extraction projects, before they are carried out.

In general, an EAP should identify potential adverse environmental effects; propose measures to mitigate adverse environmental impacts; predict whether there will be significant adverse environmental effects after mitigation measures are implemented; and include a follow-up program to verify the accuracy of the environmental assessment and the effectiveness of the mitigation measures.

In the particular case of the western Canadian province, regional authorities say they are concerned with the respect that such a process pays to the legal rights of First Nations living in the areas where mineral and other resources are being exploited.

In a press release, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, George Heyman, stated that his office created a new Environmental Assessment Advisory Committee that will work directly with the First Nations Energy and Mining Council to review and make recommendations on the environmental assessment process.

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