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CELA is a non-profit specialty legal aid clinic funded by Legal Aid Ontario. We work to protect human health and our environment by seeking justice for those harmed by pollution and by working to change policies to prevent such problems in the first place. We provide free legal services to people and groups across Ontario that qualify for legal aid.

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The CELA Foundation supports CELA’s research and educational work on environmental law and justice issues through extensive resources available to the public and in support of the environmental law and policy community. The Foundation also helps CELA mentor and train the next generation of environmental lawyers.

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CELA counsel represent Ontario residents and community groups who qualify for legal aid. Representation occurs in the courts and before tribunals on matters of environmental law. CELA’s lawyers have achieved some of the most important environmental law victories and precedent-setting cases in Canada.

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Support the Next Generation of Environmental Advocates
Your donation to the CELA Foundation will make a difference today and for the future by helping CELA build an important knowledge base for environmental legal cases and develop the skills of lawyers who will advocate for the environmental reforms we need.

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CELA's Latest Activities

Discover staff blog posts, publications, reports, alerts, and media releases.

Response to Mining Association of Canada Letter re: Bill S-5, An Act to Amend CEPA

CELA has written a letter in response to the May 27th letter to the Senate Standing Committee from the Mining Association of Canada (“MAC”). The MAC argument focuses on a difference in increases between CELA calculations of a 10,800 percent increase in on-site disposal of arsenic and its compounds in Quebec for the period 2006- 2018 and MAC calculations of a 300 percent increase for the period 2010-2018. CELA submits that, If anything, the MAC argument underscores the need for the amendments CELA proposed for improving Bill S-5 and CEPA.

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Casework: Judicial Review of Bill 197 - COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act, 2020​

On behalf of several environmental organizations and individuals, CELA sought a judicial review in Divisional Court of the statutory decision by two Ontario Cabinet Ministers that denied our clients and other members of the public their legal right to be notified and consulted on environmentally significant legislative amendments contained in Bill 197 (COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act, 2020) before they were enacted by the Ontario Legislature on July 21, 2020. These amendments include changes to the Environmental Assessment Act (EAA), the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) and the Planning Act.

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