Dalhousie Law Journal


Greenpeace, Canada, environmental assessment, environment, nuclear power plant, Supreme Court of Canada


In Greenpeace Canada v. Canada (2014), the applicants successfully challenged the adequacy of the environmental assessment report prepared in relation to a proposed nuclear power plant. In assessing that report, the Federal Court described environmental assessment as an "evidence-based and democratically accountable" decision-making process. In this comment I suggest that this characterization represents the most significant-if perhaps also long overdue development in Canadian environmental assessment law since the Supreme Court's landmark decision in Friends of the Oldman River Society v. Canada. I also discuss some of the implications of this characterization, including the extent to which environmental effects must be considered and the proper approach to judicial review in this context.