Recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic is a challenge on many fronts, not the least of which are economic recovery and environmental protection.
First, an important reminder on an upcoming deadline: the Environmental Emergency (E2) regulations.
As we shared about a year ago, “In August 2019, the updated Environmental Emergency (E2 Regulations) will officially repeal and replace the existing Environmental Emergency Regulations.” We also said that the regulations affect about 3,000 facilities across Canada.
At the time we are writing this blog, there has been no announced delay in the E2 deadline. This means you must have your E2 done and implemented by August 24, 2020.
For more details about the E2 Regulations, see our blog from last year. If the E2 Regulations do apply to your company and you have not completed/implemented your plans, we strongly encourage you to make this a priority.
Some Federal Reporting Delays
There has been some relaxation of federal environmental regulations due to COVID- 19. Reporting under the National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI) has been delayed from July 1st to July 31st. Greenhouse Gas Emission reporting has also been delayed until July 31st.
In our May 21st blog, we provided a short summary of modifications to environmental reporting by province.
Economic and Environmental Balance
Balancing the need for environmental protection and economic needs, both as a nation and as a household, is genuine. We still do not know the full ramifications of COVID-19 on our nation.
On June 4th, the Conference Board of Canada wrote, “With the COVID-19 pandemic likely to have peaked in April, Canada’s trade activity dropped to levels close to what was seen during the 2008–09 recession as physical distancing measures put in place to slow the spread of the virus pushed the world economy into a deep recession, weighed on energy prices and severely fractured global supply chains.”
The United States has modified some regulations as well with the same aim, to boost the economy (see Bold Executive Order on “Regulatory Relief”).
We are in uncharted water as we balance economic recovery and environmental protection. Indicators and data from both will be, and likely are, monitored either formally or informally.
Big picture economic/environmental policy issues are outside of our control. What we can control is business inside the four walls. If you are doing the same and need assistance with an environmental matter (compliance approvals/permits to soil/water/soil vapour assessment, monitoring, and remediation to dispute resolution), we can help. You can contact me at 519-979-7300, Ext. 114