Friends of the Earth, Ecojustice ask Supreme Court to respect polluter pays principle

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(Ottawa, November 16, 2011) Ecojustice, representing Friends of the Earth, appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada today to argue that insolvent corporations cannot shift the cost of cleaning up environmental contamination to the taxpayer. This is the first time Canada’s insolvency procedure has been challenged to deal with the polluter pays principle. In this case, the issue is historic contamination by AbitibiBowater Inc.’s mining, shipping and pulp and paper operations in Newfoundland.

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Friends of the Earth, Ecojustice fighting for polluter pays principle at Supreme Court

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Friends of the Earth, represented by Ecojustice, will appear before the Supreme Court of Canada in the case of Newfoundland and Labrador v. AbitibiBowater Inc. The Supreme Court is considering whether insolvent corporations in Canada must fulfill their past environmental obligations to the public or whether taxpayers must bear the full cost of an environmental clean-up. This is the first time Canada’s insolvency procedure is challenged to deal with the polluter pays principle, in this case, for historic contamination by AbitibiBowater’s mining, shipping and pulp and paper operations in Newfoundland.

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Canada facing legal challenge for breaking federal global warming law

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OTTAWA — The Government of Canada is facing a landmark legal challenge in the country’s top court for failing to take action on global warming — specifically for refusing to respect a federal law that requires reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Yesterday an appeal was filed with the Supreme Court seeking to argue that the Government is breaking Canadian law by failing to comply with the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act (KPIA). It is the first climate change lawsuit in Canadian history.

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Canada violating Kyoto law

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TORONTO — Environmental groups are in court today challenging Canada’s federal government for its violation of the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act (KPIA). Friends of the Earth, represented by Ecojustice and Paliare Roland Barristers are arguing before the Federal Court of Appeal that Canada’s Minister of Environment and the Governor in Council are in violation of the Canadian law that requires Canada to take strong action to meet binding international commitments to fight climate change.

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Canada back in court over Kyoto lawsuit

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OTTAWA — Lawyers for Friends of the Earth Canada gave the Government of Canada notice yesterday that they will be appealing a recent Federal Court decision in Canada’s first ever climate change lawsuit. The much anticipated appeal comes one week before the world gathers in Poznan, Poland for the next round of international climate change negotiations.

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Canada’s top court upholds right to launch environmental class action lawsuits

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OTTAWA — Environmental advocates are hailing a precedent-setting ruling from the Supreme Court of Canada today in the case of St. Lawrence Cement Inc. v. Barrette, which upheld the right for citizens to launch environmental class action lawsuits. Represented by pro bono lawyers from Ecojustice (formerly Sierra Legal Defence Fund) and the firm of Lauzon Bélanger, the Quebec Environmental Law Centre and Friends of the Earth Canada intervened in the dispute to defend the rights of Canadians to use class action procedures in environmental nuisance cases. The groups also sought to challenge a controversial Quebec Court of Appeal decision that would have prevented class action lawsuits over environmental harm.

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Canada wriggles off the hook for violating Kyoto law

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(Toronto, October 20, 2008) After months of deliberation, Canada’s Federal Court released a decision late yesterday regarding the Government of Canada’s alleged violation of the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act (KPIA), a federal law that required Canada to take specific action to meet binding international commitments to fight climate change.

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Friends of the Earth takes federal government to court over Kyoto failure

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TORONTO — In a federal courtroom today, Canada will become the first country ever to be brought to court for failing to comply with its legal commitments to combat global warming. On behalf of Friends of the Earth Canada, pro-bono lawyers from Paliare Roland Barristers and Ecojustice (formerly Sierra Legal Defence Fund) will be in court today challenging the Government of Canada for violating the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act (KPIA), a federal law which came into force less than one year ago.

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Canadian Environmental Bill of Rights (CEBR)

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OTTAWA — Three leading environmental organizations are using the United Nations’ World Environment Day to launch the first Canadian Environmental Bill of Rights (CEBR), model legislation that would enshrine in law the right of all Canadians to a healthy environment. The proposed Environmental Bill of Rights was researched and drafted by pro bono lawyers at Ecojustice (formerly Sierra Legal Defence Fund), on behalf of Friends of the Earth Canada and the Sierra Club Canada. The groups are asking parliamentarians from all federal parties to advance the legislation through the House of Commons.

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Right to launch environmental class action lawsuits

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OTTAWA — Lawyers for two environmental groups will be intervening at the Supreme Court of Canada today, challenging a controversial Quebec Court of Appeal decision that could impair the rights of citizens to launch class action lawsuits over environmental harm. Represented by pro bono counsel from Ecojustice (formerly Sierra Legal Defence Fund) and the firm of Lauzon Bélanger, the Quebec Environmental Law Centre and Friends of the Earth Canada will be intervening in the landmark St. Lawrence Cement Inc. v. Barrette case.

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