Green Coalition Calls Ministry actions “Scandalous” developers never refused certificates of authorization

campbell-stuart-addresses-media

What began as a legal attempt to save one particular wetland has turned into a call to investigate all Certificates of Authorization issued by the Quebec Ministry of Environment (MEQ). No judgment has been handed down yet, but environmentalists of the Green Coalition find the testimony scandalous.

In a court case heard this month, Valerie Plante’s environmentally-friendly administration was named as a co-defendant. Plante’s defense of construction of a new building in the largest wetland on Montreal Island is at issue. The Green Coalition asked for an injunction to stop the construction. The MEQ, which authorized the construction, was named as a co-defendant.

A glimpse of the incredible biodiversity found in the Technoparc marshes in 2015. Great concentrations of Blue Herons, Green Herons, Night Herons, Egrets, Moorhens, Virginia Rails, and Mallard Ducks could then be seen feeding together. This particular marsh has since been drained and is destined to become a parking lot. ©Hubert Gendron

In a stunning development, MEQ has admitted in open court that it has never refused a developer’s request for a Certificate of Authorization, Campbell Stuart, one of the lawyers on the case for the Green Coalition, wrote to The Times. 

The Ministry’s admission reveals a terrible scandal at the heart of our environmental protection bureaucracy. We now know that it works for developers, not for the environment and not for the public, continues Stuart.

The Green Coalition demands an immediate public investigation

The Green Coalition demands an immediate public investigation into the MEQ’s procedures for issuing Certificates of Authorization, including a review of the validity of all Certificates already issued and an immediate moratorium on the issuance of new Certificates until the inquiry is finished and the procedures are corrected.

Stuart specifies that the Green Coalition’s injunction proceedings are an attempt to stop destruction of the Technoparc wetlands just north of Trudeau Airport. He notes that environmental studies done by Technoparc include bird counts conducted in the middle of winter when most species have flown south. 

Those studies—on which work authorizations were based–dismissed the area as being of little environmental importance. But, since 2016, birdwatchers in Technoparc area and adjacent federal lands just north of Trudeau Airport have counted 189 species of birds there according to the eBird website. This includes endangered species–such as Least Bitterns and Wood Thrushes–nesting on site. The area is now recognized as one of the top bird-watching spots in Quebec.

A recent article in the Metro newspaper on this same topic cites Geneviève Jutras, working at Mayor Plante’s office, as saying Montreal has proven its support of wetland protection by actions. The Plante administration is intent on creating a 3000 hectare park on Montreal’s West Island, but this does not include the Technoparc area on the border of Dorval and St-Laurent.

Similar complaints about the Quebec Environment Ministry rubber stamping wetland destruction were heard in 2015 when environmentalist Tommy Montpetit told Radio Canada that: the (MEQ) has become a machine to authorize work (to destroy wetlands). At that time, on average, two such wetlands were destroyed every week in the Greater Montreal area. Most of these wetlands were less than 5 hectares in area.

Wetlands can clean the water that flows through them, mitigate large flood events, recharge underground aquifers and sequester carbon. Wetlands are also the most biologically diverse of all terrestrial ecosystems, providing lucrative destinations for ecotourism according to websites like Conservation.org

In 2016, construction work began in the Technoparc area, including access roads, cutting thousands of trees and draining marshes. This has already caused a serious decline in numbers of birds and other species writes Stuart. 

Feature image: Campbell Stuart Photo: John Symon

By: John Symon – [email protected]

Other articles by mtltimes.ca and totimes.ca

https://mtltimes.ca/Montreal/social-life/montreal-times-environment-information/environmentalists-protest-technoparc-destruction-mayor-plante-refuses-to-settle-out-of-court/

Montreal Orange line extension on top of budget list

inistry of Foreign affairs in Italy assures people it is a safe country


Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email
Is it possible to get an A for a 5-paragraph essay assignment in 1 hour? We can safely say yes, a student can get an A+ mark if he turns to EduJungles


staycation

The ultimate guide to planning a long family staycation in Canada

To guarantee that everyone has an amazing time, careful planning is necessary when organizing a lengthy staycation. Here’s the ultimate guide to planning your family staycation in Canada. Canada, with its vast landscapes, diverse cities, and rich cultural heritage, offers endless possibilities for a memorable family staycation. Whether you’re exploring the stunning natural beauty of

Meal kits

Cost vs. Convenience: Analyzing meal kits and traditional cooking

In this modern world and modern times, convenience often takes priority over cost, especially when it comes to food. Meal kits and traditional cooking represent two different approaches to home dining, and each of them has advantages and disadvantages. Analyzing these methods through the lens of cost and convenience provides insight into why individuals might

Condo renovations

Condo renovations Dos and Don’ts: Expert Tips for a Successful Project

Embarking on a condo renovations journey can be both exhilarating and daunting. Imagine transforming your living space into a stylish haven that reflects your personality and meets your needs. While exciting, the process can be full of challenges and unforeseen hiccups. That’s why we’ve gathered some condo renovation dos and don’ts from the experts to

Terrific Hair

Terrific Hair Means Tamanu – Earth to Body

Curly, straight, thick, thin, kinky or silky, tamanu loves and makes terrific Hair.  And scalps. Nutritionally dense yet gentle, tamanu is an effective and versatile nut oil. It stimulates, helps promote growth. prevents hair loss, reduces scalp itch and irritations and adds a natural sheen! Make tamanu a part of your hair and scalp care

Understanding the 4 legal process after a DUI Crash

A single mistake can have serious consequences, especially when driving under the influence. The aftermath of a DUI crash extends beyond physical harm and property damage. It involves a complex legal process that may feel overwhelming. As a responsible citizen, it’s vital to grasp the legal system and your rights in such situations. This blog

personal injury lawyer

Pedestrian accident: How a personal injury lawyer can help you

Accidents involving pedestrians can be life-altering. You could be walking down the street or crossing a street. A vehicle’s sudden impact can change everything right away. If you’ve found yourself in such a situation, you might be wondering how to move forward. This is where a personal injury lawyer steps in, offering crucial help and

Mtltimes Subscription

The latest on what’s moving Montreal and the world – delivered straight to your inbox