Environmental Protection Action
Marginal note:Circumstances when an individual may bring an action
22. (1) An individual who has applied for an investigation may bring an environmental protection action if
(a) the Minister failed to conduct an investigation and report within a reasonable time; or
(b) the Minister’s response to the investigation was unreasonable.
Marginal note:Nature of the action
(2) The action may be brought in any court of competent jurisdiction against a person who committed an offence under this Act that
(a) was alleged in the application for the investigation; and
(b) caused significant harm to the environment.
Marginal note:Relief that may be claimed
(3) In the action, the individual may claim any or all of the following:
(a) a declaratory order;
(b) an order, including an interlocutory order, requiring the defendant to refrain from doing anything that, in the opinion of the court, may constitute an offence under this Act;
(c) an order, including an interlocutory order, requiring the defendant to do anything that, in the opinion of the court, may prevent the continuation of an offence under this Act;
(d) an order to the parties to negotiate a plan to correct or mitigate the harm to the environment or to human, animal or plant life or health, and to report to the court on the negotiations within a time set by the court; and
(e) any other appropriate relief, including the costs of the action, but not including damages.
Marginal note:Limitation period of two years
23. (1) An environmental protection action may be brought only within a limitation period of two years beginning when the plaintiff becomes aware of the conduct on which the action is based, or should have become aware of it.
Marginal note:Time during investigation not included
(2) The limitation period does not include any time following the plaintiff’s application for an investigation, but before the plaintiff receives a report under subsection 21(2).
Marginal note:No action for remedial conduct
24. An environmental protection action may not be brought if the alleged conduct
(a) was taken
(i) to correct or mitigate harm or the risk of harm to the environment or to human, animal or plant life or health, or
(ii) to protect national security, support humanitarian relief efforts, participate in multilateral military or peace-keeping activities under the auspices of international organizations or defend a member state of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization; and
(b) was reasonable and consistent with public safety.
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