Advancing Environmental Law

Action on Environmental Justice – Improving Environmental Laws

Alongside legal representation, CELA aims to stay out of the courtroom by seeking change in policies and practices to make it unnecessary for citizens or communities to have to retain a lawyer to seek environmental justice. In fact, our policy work in shaping progressive environmental laws and regulations often arises from issues brought to us by public inquiries to our office.When we hear of many people affected by the same issue, systemic change is often the most effective and efficient solution.

Our law reform programs address multiple pollution sources, including greenhouse gases, and across all of this work our primary focus is on addressing public health and impacts on vulnerable communities.

CELA’s programs address the following areas (web-content will continue to be organized into each area in the coming weeks):

Access to Environmental Justice

  • Ontario’s Environmental Bill of Rights
  • Regional Services, including CELA’s Northern Services Program
  • Anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) legislation
  • Right-to-Know laws and bylaws
  • Indigenous rights
  • and many additional areas addressed thematically below

Pollution and Health

  • Indoor environmental health, including the RentSafe project
  • Pesticides and pesticide regulation
  • Industrial air pollution
  • Waste and legacy contaminants
  • Chemicals management by the federal government

Water Sustainability

Energy Policy

  • Energy costs and Ontario residents on low income
  • Nuclear safety and emergency preparedness
  • Climate change
  • Conservation and renewables

Environmental assessment and land use planning

  • Federal environmental assessment law
  • Provincial (Ontario) environmental assessment law
  • Provincial land use planning law including the Planning Act and the Aggregate Resources Act

Acting Globally

  • Aligning international law with domestic environmental law
  • Environmental implications of international trade agreements