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 – info@mtltimes.ca

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


Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on email
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


AI

Advantages of using AI in the casino industry

Casinos have started to utilize artificial intelligence to ensure that they provide the best service possible. AI is a resourceful tool for casinos to predict the future and make much more efficient decisions. Thankfully, this technology can be used for the benefit of players as well. This article will explore the advantages of using AI

Loto-Québec

Loto-Québec is looking for three millionaires! Check your lottery tickets!

Do you have lottery tickets that you still haven’t checked? You may be one of the winners Loto-Québec is looking for! Among these winners, there are three millionaires out there who have yet to claim their prize, including one with a claim deadline coming up Montréal, September 27, 2021 — Do you have lottery tickets that you still haven’t

Le Burger Week

Le Burger Week 2021 and the Montreal winner’s are…

This past September, Le Burger Week, presented by Saputo and Sysco and delivered with DoorDash, rolled out across the nation.  Over 700 participating restaurants across Canada, with this year’s edition having the highest number of participating restaurants ever! In Montreal, we had over 50+ participating restaurants, and 165+ participating restaurants across the province of Quebec! Furthermore, this year,

La Ronde Fright Fest

La Ronde’s Fright Fest enter at your own risk

“La Ronde’s Fright Fest is Québec’s most popular festival during the spooky season. Our signature event featuring our talented scareactors and bone-chilling haunted attractions is unlike any other, and is tailor-made for Halloween enthusiasts of all ages,” said La Ronde park president Sophie Emond.  Throughout the month of October, La Ronde will become the scariest

The Jardin Royalmount

What’s next at The Jardin Royalmount – Hint wear pink

The Jardin Royalmount will commemorate Mean Girls Day on October 3 with a screening of the hit movie Mean Girls with Lindsay Lohan. Doors open at 6:15 p.m., with showtime at 7:15 p.m. General admission tickets are $24.60 (adults) and $18.60 (children) and are available on a first come, first served basis. Guests are encouraged

Just For Laughs new show

Just For Laughs new show – Tickets available

Just For Laughs new show will be with Lebanese-American comic NEMR on January 15, 2022 at Club Soda. Born in San Diego and moved back with his family to Lebanon, NEMR has performed his stand-up comedy in English throughout the Middle East, where he has received great acclaim for breaking down barriers and uniting people

Mtltimes Subscription

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