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Course Description

Environmental protection is recognized as an important public policy in Canada. Federal and provincial governments have implemented comprehensive environmental laws that require all Canadians to actively protect the environment. Companies or individuals that fail to meet the requirements of these laws may be charged with an offence leading to a fine or imprisonment. To ensure compliance, environmental statutes include broad powers of enforcement. These powers allow enforcement officers (inspectors/investigators) to carry out inspections to verify compliance with the law and investigations to gather evidence of a potential violation of the law. Any business, organization or individual that may be the subject of an inspection or investigation should be prepared and should clearly understand the rights and responsibilities of all involved.

This two-day course includes a brief introduction to environmental regulation, however, completion of the course entitled Environmental Regulation for Managers prior to attending this course is recommended.

Who Should Attend

This course will provide a solid introduction for individuals in public and private enterprise, including engineers, environmental managers, plant managers, environmental scientists and lawyers who are responsible for environmental affairs or the coordination of on-site inspections and investigations. The course will provide an excellent overview for any employee, such as security personnel, equipment operators, and others who may be required to participate in an environmental inspection or investigation.

What You Will Learn

  • how to read environmental legislation
  • how environmental laws define offences, inspections, and investigations
  • how inspections and investigations are carried out
  • the key differences between inspections and investigations
  • how to prepare for an investigation interview
  • when to contact legal counsel during an inspection or investigation
  • how to facilitate a smooth inspection or investigation

Special Feature

Through interactive, hands-on activities participants will design a practical checklist of items to be considered before, during and following an inspection or investigation and a corporate policy on inspections and investigations. Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions of enforcement officers, prosecutors and defence lawyers.

Objectives

The purpose of this introductory course is to provide an overview of the inspection and investigation processes and to assist participants in understanding the rights and responsibilities of the inspectors/investigators and those being inspected/investigated. At the end of the two-day course, participants will have a general understanding of the relevant environmental laws and how enforcement provisions and protocols apply to them or their organization.

Course Outline

Day 1 - registration/check-in will start at 8:00 a.m. with sessions to begin at 8:30 a.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. Day 2 will commence at 8:30 a.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. There will be 15 minute mid-morning and afternoon breaks. A light lunch is included.

Day 1

8:30 Registration
8:45 Introductions
9:15 Regulating Pollution
Presentation 1:  Briefing on federal and provincial environmental regulations
10:30 Break
10:45 Identifying Environmental Offences
11:15 The Role of Compliance & Enforcement
12:00 Lunch
12:30 Introduction to Inspections
1:00 Group Exercise
1:45 Introduction to Investigations
2:00 Group Exercise
2:45 Break
3:00 Q & A / Quiz
4:00 Adjournment

Day 2

8:30 Investigations and the Charter
10:15 Break
10:30 Practical Considerations
Privileged documents, environmental audits, private dwellings
11:00 Operating in a Regulated Field
The broad reach of Gemtec
12:00 Lunch
12:30 The Role of the Enforcement Officer
Guest Speaker
1:30 Quiz
2:00 Break
2:15 Group Exercise
Inspection Checklist
3:15 Debrief
4:00 Adjournment

Instructor

Lisa J. Mitchell, M.E.S., LL.B, is a lawyer (Dalhousie, 1991), principal of LJM Environmental Law and staff lawyer for the East Coast Environmental Law Association. She has a Masters of Environmental Studies from the School for Resource and Environmental Studies (Dalhousie, 1994), and twenty years of experience working in the areas of environmental law, policy and environmental management. Lisa's law practice is exclusively in the area of environmental law. She has developed a broad-ranging practice base that includes government, non-government organizations, private-sector companies, community groups and individual clients. Her expertise in this area originated in the challenging field of agri-environmental law and has expanded to include contaminated sites, environmental impact assessment, water regulation, professional and corporate environmental liability, coastal management and other areas. Lisa has provided advice and training on federal and provincial environmental legislation and policy in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Ontario. She is familiar with the legislative frameworks that address environmental concerns in all of these jurisdictions however she has an intimate knowledge of the Nova Scotia framework based on her role in the development and review of the Nova Scotia Environment Act in 1994 and 2000.

Notes

For more Environmental Management courses click here.

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

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