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ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT CANADIAN SOCIETY OF SAFETY ENGINEERING REGULATORY AWARENESS AND THE ENVIRONMENT DECEMBER 12, 2005.

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Presentation on theme: "ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT CANADIAN SOCIETY OF SAFETY ENGINEERING REGULATORY AWARENESS AND THE ENVIRONMENT DECEMBER 12, 2005."— Presentation transcript:

1 ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT CANADIAN SOCIETY OF SAFETY ENGINEERING REGULATORY AWARENESS AND THE ENVIRONMENT DECEMBER 12, 2005

2 Everybody has a part to play in ensuring the protection of the environment by being proactive through best management practices and adopting sound EMS. Also all parties should be reactive to impacts to the environment by taking remedial measures, adopting pollution prevention programs and exercising due diligence. Industry Gov’t Agency Public

3 Overall responsibility for environmental protection is shared between the public, government and industry. Delegated agencies, boards and governments administer the specific legislation. Agenc y Public Industry Gov’t

4 ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND ENHANCEMENT ACT u PURPOSE Support and promote the protection, enhancement and wise use of the environment u PROCESS EIA Approvals Codes of Practice Compliance Assurance ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION

5 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSURANCE u Drinking Water u Science and Standards u Environmental Partnerships and Education u Environmental Monitoring and Evaluation REGIONAL SERVICES u Approvals and Licences u Contaminated sites u Compliance Assurance Inspection Enforcement ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT

6 THREE REGIONS u Southern Region Calgary Lethbridge u Central Region Red Deer Edson Stony Plain u Northern Region Edmonton Peace River ALBERTA ENVIRONMENT

7 Involves 3 components - Education, Inspection, and Enforcement. Consistency is a key principle to ensure success of program. Defined as “all activities undertaken to ensure that regulated parties comply with legislation COMPLIANCE ASSURANCE

8 INSPECTIONS Data gathering function Obtain technical understanding of operation General or routine on-site review of facility INVESTIGATIONS Evidence gathering function Seeks to substantiate or dismiss allegation COMPLIANCE ASSURANCE

9 COMPLIANCE INSPECTION PROGRAM u Regional Coordination u Emphasis is on prevention and education u Unannounced inspections u Frequency of inspections depends on priority u Consistent u Inspections are followed up INSPECTIONS

10 INSPECTORS ARE DESIGNATED BY THE DIRECTOR u Legislated Appointments Section 25 of EPEA Section 163 of WA u Powers provided and identified in the legislation INSPECTIONS

11 High priority program for Regional Services Conducted under the authority of the Environmental Protection & Enhancement Act & Water Act Regional delivery model Primary purpose is to “confirm compliance” INSPECTIONS

12 Multimedia approach where possible In one inspection all aspects of any facility’s approval or registration maybe reviewed including compliance with the applicable Act and regulations. May include taking samples of air, water, soil and groundwater. INSPECTIONS

13 CATEGORIES OF ACTIVITIES Industrial Facilities Municipal Water/Wastewater Plants Waste Management and Disposal Conservation and Reclamation of Specified Land Pesticide Sales, Storage and Handling Codes of Practice INSPECTIONS

14 The program will focus on prevention and education of stakeholders to Acts, Regulations, Approvals, and Codes of Practices. The program will also educate regulated stakeholders on the compliance inspection program and the importance of reporting INSPECTIONS

15 Emphasis on identifying and correcting non-compliance. Industry will be given a reasonable opportunity to come back into compliance providing there is no adverse effect or willful contravention. Notice of Non-Compliance INSPECTIONS

16 PRIORITY AND FREQUENCY OF INSPECTIONS Potential for adverse effect Sensitivity & Issues Compliance history and Environmental performance Good performance rewarded with less frequent inspections INSPECTIONS

17 INVESTIGATIONS ADDRESS u Alleged contraventions u Emergency response u Public complaints u Industry reporting u Substance releases INVESTIGATIONS

18 AN INVESTIGATOR WILL: u Gather evidence to determine if a contravention occurred u Assess whether sufficient evidence exists to proceed with enforcement action u Assess any defences to the allegation INVESTIGATIONS

19 ENFORCEMENT OPTIONS u Field Warning u Warning Letter u Tickets u Enforcement Orders u Administrative Penalties u Prosecutions u Court Orders u Cancellation of Approvals INVESTIGATIONS

20 OFFENCES Regulatory offences for which there need only to be proof of the prohibited act Regulatory offences for which defences of “due diligence” and reasonable mistake of fact are available OFFENCES

21 STRICT LIABILITY u No need to prove state of mind u Conviction can follow upon mere proof of offence u Accused allowed to rebut with evidence of reasonable care (due diligence) u Regulatory offences (public welfare) are prima facie strict liability offences OFFENCES

22 A person shall not be convicted of an offence if that person establishes on a balance of probabilities that he took all reasonable steps to prevent its commission. DUE DILIGENCE

23 STANDARD OF CARE u The higher the risk, the higher the standard u Depends on knowledge, skill, ability of person, organization u Industry standards u Resources of the organization u Each case depends on the facts of the situation DUE DILIGENCE

24 In the context of an employer who has delegated work to an employee or independent contractor, due diligence consists of setting up and implementing a system to prevent breaches of the law. DUE DILIGENCE

25 COMPONENTS OF A SYSTEM u Development of policies employer board of directors u Implement policies by establishing: lines of authority reporting mechanisms procedures DUE DILIGENCE

26 COMPONENTS OF A SYSTEM u Will include: Personnel considerations Communication considerations Physical considerations u Systems should be designed to: Include safety margins to prevent non- compliance from occurring,and Provide for adequate inspection, monitoring and auditing of all these systems DUE DILIGENCE

27 CORPORATE LIABILITY u What role the corporation played u The corporations response to the problem u What measures were taken to prevent the offence u What control the corporation had over the illegal activity DUE DILIGENCE

28 LACK OF DUE DILIGENCE u Failure to train u Allowing the wrong person to do the job u Failure to have sufficient people on the job u Failure to provide a safe workplace u Failure to consider circumstances u Ignorance of the law DUE DILIGENCE

29 u The Act and Regulation insure that Industry knows what and when to report u Enacted to prevent a worsening adverse effect on the environment, public health or safety u Additionally to confirm that remedial measures are taken in a timely manner RELEASE REPORTING

30 Adverse Effect - means the impairment or damage to the environment, health, safety or property. Owner Of A Substance - means the owner before or during the release. Person Having Control Of A Substance - means the person having charge, management, or control of the substance. Containment – means the use of a building, structure, or thing designed to prevent the released substance from causing an adverse effect. RELEASE REPORTING

31 Immediate Reporting – An individual shall report the release of a substance and the potential adverse effect and the information listed in s. 111 of EPEA at the first opportunity. This is not to be interpreted to mean at the convenience of the person. Written Report – A written report shall be received by the Environmental Response Service Centre within 7 calendar days of the oral report. The report must include the information required by s.4(3) of the regulation. RELEASE REPORTING

32 DUTY TO REPORT u Who Must Report Person who releases or causes or permits the release Person having control of the substance (unless it is already reported) Police officer or employee of local authority(unless it is already reported) RELEASE REPORTING

33 DUTY TO REPORT u What Must Be Reported Release of substances to the environment that have caused, are causing, or may cause an adverse effect Determining factors including but not limited to: –The chemical and physical characteristics of the substance released, –The receiving media, –The location of the release, and –The risk to the environment. RELEASE REPORTING

34 DUTY TO REPORT The onus is on the person who causes or permits the release or has control of the released substance to determine whether there is an adverse effect. RELEASE REPORTING

35 DUTY TO REPORT When To Report u Release should be reported as soon as the person knows or ought to have known of the release. u Immediate release reporting required by the Release Reporting Regulations. u Reporting should follow the criteria set out in the Release Reporting Guideline. RELEASE REPORTING

36 ORAL REPORT Section 111(1) EPEA u Location and time of release u Description of circumstances leading to the release u Type and quantity of substance released u Details of actions taken at the time of the release u Description of the surrounding area RELEASE REPORTING

37 WRITTEN REPORT Section 4(1) Substance Release Regs. The date and time of release Location Duration Composition; concentration; quantity Detailed circumstances Steps taken to minimize, control or stop Steps to prevent similar releases Any other information required RELEASE REPORTING

38 TO WHOM REPORTS SHOULD BE MADE Reports should be made to the ERC as follows: Verbal reports can be phoned to: (780) or on a 24 hour basis. A reference number will be provided at the time of the report. Written reports can be faxed to: (780) or Mailed to: Environmental Response Centre 111 Twin Atria Building 4999 – 98 th Avenue Edmonton, AlbertaT6B 2X3 RELEASE REPORTING

39 u Reporting is a cornerstone of EPEA legislation u Non-reporting is treated seriously u Onus is on operator to determine whether adverse effect from release has occurred and to report u Use common sense u If in doubt, REPORT !! RELEASE REPORTING

40 Education, prevention and enforcement activities will be used to achieve compliance Legislative requirements will be clear and enforceable All staff will be trained to undertake compliance and enforcement activities Compliance and enforcement activities will be carried out in a consistent and timely manner KEY MESSAGES

41 Alleged contraventions will be responded to in a timely and appropriate manner Appropriate compliance and enforcement tools will be used Enforcement responses will be firm and fair Enforcement responses will involve remediation, deterrence and punishment and based on polluter pay philosophy Partnerships with the public, stakeholders and other government agencies will be encouraged KEY MESSAGES


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