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NEIA meets with Minister of Municipal Affairs and Environment to discuss environmental assessment and permitting processes

For Immediate Release
December 6, 2017

On December 5th, the Newfoundland and Labrador Environmental Industry Association (NEIA) met with Hon. Eddie Joyce, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Environment, to discuss the provincial government’s commitment to review environmental assessment (EA) and permitting processes in the province.

“We are appreciative that Minister Joyce and his staff were available to meet with representatives of our association,” said Kieran Hanley, NEIA’s Executive Director. “We had the opportunity to engage in a discussion on this topic of great importance for industry in Newfoundland and Labrador.”

On March 27, 2017 the provincial government committed in its Way Forward strategy to reviewing its EA and permitting processes in 2017/18. Hanley noted that in anticipation of consultations around regulatory reform, NEIA has been engaging environmental professionals in the province to identify opportunities for improvement or enhancement.

“Since September, NEIA has held a workshop for private sector EA practitioners, hosted an interactive session with a broader audience of green economy stakeholders at our annual conference, and extensively engaged our membership directly to develop a series of specific recommendations for government to consider.” Hanley said NEIA will continue to consult with practitioners working in the province’s key industries towards a formal submission to government in early 2018.

Hanley said that there are opportunities to reform EA and permitting to increase efficiency for both the public and private sectors, create more certainty around processes for all parties, while maintaining a high environmental standard. “The Minister and his staff were open to discussing industry’s ideas and perspectives, and encouraged NEIA to continue to engage with the department.” In addition to addressing current opportunities, Hanley also noted that it was important for government to consider the proactive development of regulations for emerging industries like offshore wind energy.

“We were very encouraged by our meeting with Minister Joyce and his team, and look forward to contributing in any way that we can to the reform process as it unfolds,” said Hanley.

NEIA is a not-for-profit association of businesses that promotes the development of clean technology and the growth of the green economy in Newfoundland and Labrador. NEIA has over 200 members. More information can be found at http://www.neia.org.

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