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Environmental Litigation & Enforcement

Environmental Litigation & Enforcement
Environmental Litigation & Enforcement
Expertise / Practices / Environmental / Environmental Litigation & Enforcement

Blakes offers a multidisciplinary Enforcement & Dispute Resolution team poised in handling the most complex environmental litigation. Clients benefit from our extensive experience advising on risk mitigation strategies and litigating a wide range of environmental claims. Many of the claims we have worked on relate to property remediation and decontamination, oil and gasoline spills, storage and transportation of hazardous materials, noise and odour nuisances, insurance coverage, and professional negligence concerning consulting services.
We also regularly represent clients in a broad spectrum of other regulatory and administrative hearings and in arbitrations and mediations related to environmental disputes.

Recent Experience
  • An international mining company in an investigation and prosecution of some 400 alleged violations of various legislation at a Quebec mine, one of the largest environmental prosecutions in Canadian history.

  • A multinational cement manufacturer in a series of significant regulatory charges in Ontario relating to air emissions violations.

  • The defendant of Fisheries Act charges under the new increased penalty regime for an ammonia release from an ice arena, which included a constitutional challenge.

  • The proponent in a Fisheries Act investigation related to more than 30 releases from the construction of a run-of-river hydro project.

  • A regional municipality in a provincial investigation of the alleged disposal of hazardous waste in a municipal landfill.

  • A commercial development regarding stop work orders issued under provincial water laws in relation to potential for wetlands on property in the Fraser Valley.

  • A residential development company regarding charges under provincial water legislation for works carried out that impacted streams and wetlands, including reviewing crown disclosure, retaining experts, and negotiating guilty-plea and sentencing.

  • Suncor Energy Inc., Imperial Oil Limited, Husky Oil Operations Limited, Cenovus Energy Inc. and Canadian Natural Resources Limited in a successful ruling at the Supreme Court of Canada against B.C. to block the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.

  • A power producer in successfully appealing, before the B.C. Environmental Appeal Board, the regulator’s decision denying a change to the water-licence flow rates for a run-of-river hydro project.

  • A real estate developer in successfully recovering remediation costs. The developer was paid to deal with the offsite remediation of over 30 properties from a previous owner.

  • A regional municipality in an arbitration regarding landfill closure costs, including a contaminant treatment system.

  • A regional municipality in successfully recovering money it spent to deal with an investigation of the disposal of hazardous waste from those who caused the incident.

  • British Columbia Hydro & Power Authority (BC Hydro) in the environmental arbitration related the construction of the C$700-million Interior to Lower Mainland (ILM) electricity transmission line, the largest transmission line built in B.C. in the last 30 years.

  • A leading transportation company in a dispute with an Ontario municipality involving regulatory charges and a constitutional challenge to determine the extent to which municipal environmental legislation applies to federal undertakings.