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Those opposed to public and private projects often request that they be “bumped up” to an individual environmental assessment (EA) under the Environmental Assessment Act. Full individual EAs take a lot of time and money, and are usually considered a major obstacle to the approval of a project. But although bump up requests frequently cause delay, they are almost never granted. Now, one has (sort of).

By regulation 444/11, the Lieutenant Governor In Council has made the Highland Companies proposed quarry in Melancthon Township subject to a full individual EA under the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act. The Minister of the Environment had received over 700 bump up requests.

3191574 Nova Scotia Company Limited, doing business as the Highland Companies, is seeking to quarry Amabel dolostone bedrock on its huge landholdings in the Township of Melancthon, in the County of Dufferin. The lands were reportedly acquired by pretending they would be used for potato farming. Generally, private sector projects such as quarries are not subject to the Environmental Assessment Act (EAA) unless specifically designated by regulation under section 39 (e) of the EAA, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make a regulation subjecting a project under the EAA.

A regulation has been made which makes the proposed quarry subject to the EAA, and will require the proponent to prepare an environmental assessment (EA) before its project can proceed. See EBR Registry Number:   011-4581. Strictly speaking, this is a designation, not a bump-up, but the effect for the community is much the same.

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