Coal Provinces ‘Co-Ordinated’ Fight Against Federal Water Pollution Rules

"Internal government documents show Alberta, B.C., Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia worked in opposition to proposed regulations to crack down on contaminated wastewater from coal mines"

"Four provincial governments strategized on a “co-ordinated approach” to overhaul proposed federal regulations aimed at reducing water pollution from coal mines, according to an internal briefing note from Alberta’s environment ministry.

The federal government has proposed the new regulations to reduce the harm of contaminated wastewater from coal mines on fish and fish habitat, but is behind schedule from previously announced goals and has been unable to even publish a draft version of the new rules.

Three of the four provinces, British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan, are directly affected by the federal proposal since they are the only provinces with active coal mining. While the fourth province, Nova Scotia, has a long history of coal mining, its last active coal mine closed in 2020.

Environment and Climate Change Canada has held multiple rounds of consultation with provincial governments, industry and other stakeholders on the coal mining effluent regulations over the last several years and as of February 2020, final rules were expected to be published this fall."

Ainslie Cruickshank reports for The Narwhal November 29, 2021.

Source: The Narwhal, 12/03/2021