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What do you think are the most important environmental law cases in Canada in 2009 so far? Here are our nominations;  do you have any others to suggest?

Topic Case name Citation


The  record fines imposed upon CN for its BC and Alberta spills, and on Suncor. Also R. v. Demolition & Recycling Inc. et al- $519,000 fine and four months jail for the unwise purchaser of a contaminated site 2008 CarswellOnt 8776 (Ont CJ – December 2, 2008)

See also R. v. Sinclair at

2008 Carswell Ont 9224 (Ont CJ – Dec 2, 2008); varied by 2009 CarswellOnt 4894 (Ont CJ – April 15 2009)


Heyes v. Vancouver 2009 BCSC 651

Update: Application for stay of proceedings dismissed at 2009 BCCA 348 (July 29 2009)

St. Lawrence Cement v. Barrette [2008] 3 S.C.R. 392
State of Connecticut, Power Inc., et al. Docket numbers: 05-5104-cv & 05-5119-cv

(United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit – September 21, 2009)

Regulatory Failure

Great Lakes United v. Canada (MOE) 42 C.E.L.R. (3d) 159 (Fed Ct – April 23 2009)
Environmental Defence Canada v. Canada (DFO) 2009 FC 878

(September 9 2009)

Each case is discussed in more detail earlier in our blog, and in our Operation Update 2009 presentation to the Ontario Bar Association.

News & Views


The more you understand, the easier it is to manage well.

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