I don't know how many of you have stopped to read all 400 pages of Bill C-38 and, if you did, fathom the full extent of changes this single piece of legislation makes on numerous other Canadian Acts. My sources tell me that it will eventually result in substantial changes to federal environmental law in Canada. In all, at least 10 other pieces of federal legislation will be amended or repealed, resulting in changes to federal environmental assessment law, fisheries law and the operation of the National Energy Board. It also impacts the Income Tax Act which may have implications for many of Canada's NGO environmental organizations.
* the number and scope of federal environmental assessments will be reduced;
* the level of protection to fisheries has been reduces and is limited to commercial, recreational of Aboriginal fisheries;
* Decisions previously left to the National Energy Board will not be made by federal cabinet and the potential impacts of proposed pipelines on critical habitat of species at risk no longer has to be considered.
The passing of Bill C-38 also results in amendments to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, Parks Canada Agency Act, Canada National Parks Act, Canada National Marine Conservation Act, Coasting Trade Act, Lyoto Protocol Implementation Act, National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy Act, Nuclear Safety and Control Act, Seeds Act and Species at Risk Act.
In other words, the impact of Bill C-38 has broad and far-reaching implications that will affect each and every Canadian at some level.
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