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Canada Oil and Gas Operations Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. O-7)

Act current to 2022-07-25 and last amended on 2020-02-26. Previous Versions

PART IRegulation of Operations (continued)

Waste (continued)

Marginal note:Appeal

 A person aggrieved by an order of the Chief Conservation Officer under section 17 or 19 after an investigation under subsection 19(2) or (3) may appeal to the Commission of the Canadian Energy Regulator to have the order reviewed under section 384 of the Canadian Energy Regulator Act.

Marginal note:Waste occuring

 When the Chief Conservation Officer, on reasonable grounds, is of the opinion that waste, as defined in paragraph 18(2)(f) or (g), is occurring in the recovery of oil or gas from a pool, that Officer may apply to the Commission of the Canadian Energy Regulator for an order under section 385 of the Canadian Energy Regulator Act requiring the operators within the pool to show cause why the Commission should not make a direction in respect of the waste.

 [Repealed, 1994, c. 10, s. 8]

Spills and Debris

Definition of spill

  •  (1) In sections 25 to 28, spill means a discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas, other than one that is authorized under subsection 25.4(1), the regulations or any other federal law. It does not include a discharge from a vessel to which Part 8 or 9 of the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 applies or from a ship to which Part 6 of the Marine Liability Act applies.

  • Definition of actual loss or damage

    (2) In section 26, actual loss or damage includes loss of income, including future income, and, with respect to any Aboriginal peoples of Canada, loss of hunting, fishing and gathering opportunities. It does not include loss of income recoverable under subsection 42(3) of the Fisheries Act.

  • Definition of debris

    (3) In sections 26 to 27 and 28, debris means any installation or structure that was put in place in the course of any work or activity required to be authorized under paragraph 5(1)(b) and that has been abandoned without an authorization that may be required by or under this Act, or any material that has broken away or been jettisoned or displaced in the course of any of that work or activity.

  • Marginal note:Immunity

    (4) Her Majesty in right of Canada incurs no liability whatever to any person arising out of the authorization by regulations made by the Governor in Council of any discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas.

  • R.S., 1985, c. O-7, s. 24
  • R.S., 1985, c. 36 (2nd Supp.), s. 123, c. 6 (3rd Supp.), s. 92
  • 1992, c. 35, s. 22
  • 2001, c. 6, s. 117, c. 26, ss. 315, 324
  • 2015, c. 4, s. 16

Marginal note:Spills prohibited

  •  (1) No person shall cause or permit a spill on or from any area to which this Act applies.

  • Marginal note:Duty to report spills

    (2) Where a spill occurs in any area to which this Act applies, any person who at the time of the spill is carrying on any work or activity related to the exploration for or development or production of oil or gas in the area of the spill shall, in the manner prescribed by the regulations, report the spill to the Chief Conservation Officer.

  • Marginal note:Duty to take reasonable measures

    (3) Every person required to report a spill under subsection (2) shall, as soon as possible, take all reasonable measures consistent with safety and the protection of the environment to prevent any further spill, to repair or remedy any condition resulting from the spill and to reduce or mitigate any danger to life, health, property or the environment that results or may reasonably be expected to result from the spill.

  • Marginal note:Taking emergency action

    (4) Where the Chief Conservation Officer, on reasonable grounds, is satisfied that

    • (a) a spill has occurred in any area to which this Act applies and immediate action is necessary in order to effect any reasonable measures referred to in subsection (3), and

    • (b) such action is not being taken or will not be taken under subsection (3),

    he may take such action or direct that it be taken by such persons as may be necessary.

  • Marginal note:Taking over management

    (5) For the purposes of subsection (4), the Chief Conservation Officer may authorize and direct such persons as may be necessary to enter the place where the spill has occurred and take over the management and control of any work or activity thereat.

  • Marginal note:Managing work or activity

    (6) A person authorized and directed to take over the management and control of any work or activity under subsection (5) shall manage and control that work or activity and take all reasonable measures in relation to the spill that are referred to in subsection (3).

  • Marginal note:Costs

    (7) Any costs incurred under subsection (6) shall be borne by the person who obtained an authorization under paragraph 5(1)(b) in respect of the work or activity from which the spill emanated and until paid constitute a debt recoverable by action in any court of competent jurisdiction as a debt due to Her Majesty in right of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Recovery of costs

    (7.1) Where a person, other than a person referred to in subsection (7), takes action pursuant to subsection (3) or (4), the person may recover from Her Majesty in right of Canada the costs and expenses reasonably incurred by that person in taking the action.

  • Marginal note:Appeal

    (8) A person aggrieved by any action or measure taken or authorized or directed to be taken under subsections (4) to (6) may appeal to the Commission of the Canadian Energy Regulator to have the order reviewed under section 384 of the Canadian Energy Regulator Act.

  • Marginal note:Personal liability

    (9) No person required, directed or authorized to act under this section or section 384 of the Canadian Energy Regulator Act is personally liable, either civilly or criminally, in respect of any act or omission in the course of complying with this section unless it is shown that the person did not act reasonably in the circumstances.

Marginal note:Spill-treating agents

  •  (1) In the case of a spill in the zones referred to in paragraph 3(d) or the waters superjacent to the continental shelf of Canada, the provisions referred to in Schedule 1 do not apply to the deposit of a spill-treating agent and those referred to in Schedule 2 do not apply in respect of any harm that is caused by the spill-treating agent or by the interaction between the spill-treating agent and the spilled oil, if

    • (a) the authorization issued under paragraph 5(1)(b) permits the use of the spill-treating agent;

    • (b) other than in the case of a small-scale test that meets the prescribed requirements, the Chief Conservation Officer approves in writing the use of the agent in response to the spill and it is used in accordance with any requirements set out in the approval;

    • (c) the agent is used for the purposes of subsection 25(3) or (4); and

    • (d) the agent is used in accordance with the regulations.

  • Marginal note:Clarification

    (2) The provisions referred to in Schedule 2 continue to apply to the holder of an authorization referred to in paragraph (1)(a) in respect of any harm that is caused by the spill or, despite subsection (1), by the interaction between the spill-treating agent and the spilled oil.

  • Marginal note:Net environmental benefit

    (3) Other than in the case of a small-scale test, the Chief Conservation Officer shall not approve the use of a spill-treating agent unless the Officer determines, taking into account any prescribed factors and any factors the Officer considers appropriate, that the use of the spill-treating agent is likely to achieve a net environmental benefit.

  • 2015, c. 4, ss. 17, 118

Marginal note:Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999

 Section 123 and subsections 124(1) to (3) of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 do not apply in respect of a spill-treating agent.

  • 2015, c. 4, s. 18

Marginal note:Fisheries Act — civil liability

 For the purpose of section 42 of the Fisheries Act, if subsection 36(3) of that Act would have been contravened but for subsection 25.1(1),

  • (a) subsection 36(3) of that Act is deemed to apply in respect of the deposit of the spill-treating agent;

  • (b) the holder of the authorization referred to in paragraph 25.1(1)(a) is deemed to be the only person referred to in paragraph 42(1)(a) of that Act; and

  • (c) those persons who caused or contributed to the spill are deemed to be the only persons referred to in paragraph 42(1)(b) of that Act.

  • 2015, c. 4, s. 18

Marginal note:Scientific research

  •  (1) For the purpose of a particular research project pertaining to the use of a spill-treating agent in mitigating the environmental impacts of a spill, the Minister of the Environment may authorize, and establish conditions for, the deposit of a spill-treating agent, oil or oil surrogate in the zones referred to in paragraph 3(d) or the waters superjacent to the continental shelf of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Oil surrogate

    (2) The Minister of the Environment shall not authorize the deposit of an oil surrogate unless that Minister determines that the oil surrogate poses fewer safety, health or environmental risks than oil.

  • Marginal note:Non-application

    (3) If the conditions set out in the authorization are met, the provisions referred to in section 25.2 and Schedules 1 and 2 do not apply in respect of the spill-treating agent, oil and oil surrogate required for the research project.

  • 2015, c. 4, ss. 18, 118

Marginal note:Recovery of loss, damage, costs or expenses

  •  (1) Where any discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas that is authorized by regulation, or any spill, occurs in any area to which this Act applies,

    • (a) all persons to whose fault or negligence the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas is attributable or who are by law responsible for others to whose fault or negligence the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas is attributable are jointly and severally liable, to the extent determined according to the degree of the fault or negligence proved against them, for

      • (i) all actual loss or damage incurred by any person as a result of the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas or as a result of any action or measure taken in relation to the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas,

      • (ii) the costs and expenses reasonably incurred by Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province or any other person in taking any action or measure in relation to the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas, and

      • (iii) all loss of non-use value relating to a public resource that is affected by a spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas or as a result of any action or measure taken in relation to the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas; and

    • (b) the person who is required to obtain an authorization under paragraph 5(1)(b) in respect of the work or activity from which the spill or the authorized discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas emanated is liable, without proof of fault or negligence, up to the applicable limit of liability that is set out in subsection (2.2) for the actual loss or damage, the costs and expenses and the loss of non-use value described in subparagraphs (a)(i) to (iii).

  • Marginal note:Recovery of loss, etc., caused by debris

    (2) If, as a result of debris or as a result of any action or measure taken in relation to debris, there is a loss of non-use value relating to a public resource or any person incurs actual loss or damage or if Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province reasonably incurs any costs or expenses in taking any action or measure in relation to debris,

    • (a) all persons to whose fault or negligence the debris is attributable or who are by law responsible for others to whose fault or negligence the debris is attributable are jointly and severally liable, to the extent determined according to the degree of the fault or negligence proved against them, for that loss, actual loss or damage, and for those costs and expenses; and

    • (b) the person who is required to obtain an authorization under paragraph 5(1)(b) in respect of the work or activity from which the debris originated is liable, without proof of fault or negligence, up to the applicable limit of liability that is set out in subsection (2.2), for that loss, actual loss or damage, and for those costs and expenses.

  • Marginal note:Vicarious liability for contractors

    (2.1) A person who is required to obtain an authorization under paragraph 5(1)(b) and who retains, to carry on a work or activity in respect of which the authorization is required, the services of a contractor to whom paragraph (1)(a) or (2)(a) applies is jointly and severally liable with that contractor for any actual loss or damage, costs and expenses and loss of non-use value described in subparagraphs (1)(a)(i) to (iii) and subsection (2).

  • Marginal note:Limits of liability

    (2.2) For the purposes of paragraphs (1)(b) and (2)(b), the limits of liability are

    • (a) in respect of any area of land or submarine area referred to in paragraph 6(1)(a) of the Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Act, the amount by which $1 billion exceeds the amount prescribed under section 9 of that Act in respect of any activity or undertaking engaged in or carried on by any person described in paragraph 6(1)(a) of that Act;

    • (b) in respect of any area referred to in paragraphs 3(a) and (b) that is covered by or located at a distance of 200 metres or less from any river, stream, lake or other body of inland water and to which paragraph (a) of this subsection does not apply, the amount of $25 million;

    • (c) in respect of any area referred to in paragraphs 3(a) and (b) and to which neither paragraph (a) nor (b) of this subsection applies, the amount of $10 million; and

    • (d) in respect of any area to which this Act applies and for which no other limit is established, the amount of $1 billion.

  • Marginal note:Increase in limits of liability

    (2.3) The Governor in Council may, by regulation, on the recommendation of the Minister, increase the amounts referred to in subsection (2.2).

  • Marginal note:Liability under another law — paragraph (1)(b) or (2)(b)

    (2.4) If a person is liable under paragraph (1)(b) or (2)(b) with respect to an occurrence and the person is also liable under any other Act, without proof of fault or negligence, for the same occurrence, the person is liable up to the greater of the applicable limit of liability that is set out in subsection (2.2) and the limit up to which the person is liable under the other Act. If the other Act does not set out a limit of liability, the limits set out in subsection (2.2) do not apply.

  • Marginal note:Costs and expenses not recoverable under Fisheries Act

    (2.5) The costs and expenses that are recoverable by Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province under this section are not recoverable under subsection 42(1) of the Fisheries Act.

  • Marginal note:Action — loss of non-use value

    (2.6) Only Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province may bring an action to recover a loss of non-use value described in subsections (1) and (2).

  • Marginal note:Claims

    (3) All claims under this section may be sued for and recovered in any court of competent jurisdiction in Canada and shall rank, firstly, in favour of persons incurring actual loss or damage described in subsections (1) and (2), without preference, secondly, to meet any costs and expenses described in those subsections, and, lastly, to recover a loss of non-use value described in those subsections.

  • Marginal note:Saving

    (4) Subject to subsections (2.5) and (2.6), nothing in this section suspends or limits

    • (a) any legal liability or remedy for an act or omission by reason only that the act or omission is an offence under this Act or gives rise to liability under this section;

    • (b) any recourse, indemnity or relief available at law to a person who is liable under this section against any other person; or

    • (c) the operation of any applicable law or rule of law that is not inconsistent with this section.

  • Marginal note:Limitation period

    (5) Proceedings in respect of claims under this section may be instituted within three years from the day when the loss, damage, costs or expenses occurred but in no case after six years from the day the spill or the discharge, emission or escape of oil or gas occurred or, in the case of debris, from the day the installation or structure in question was abandoned or the material in question broke away or was jettisoned or displaced.

  • R.S., 1985, c. O-7, s. 26
  • 1992, c. 35, s. 24
  • 2015, c. 4, ss. 19, 118
 
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