Tracking Environmental Crime Through CEPA: Canada's Environment Cops or Industry's Best Friend?

April L Girard, Suzanne Day, Laureen Snider


This paper examines shifts in the regulation and governance of environment crime over the 20 year period since the passage of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) in 1988, tracing its history, policies and enforcement record from 1989-2008. Documents assessed include Environment Canada’s enforcement data, Annual Reports, Reports on its Plans and Priorities, the Senate and House of Commons five-year reviews of CEPA 1988 and CEPA 1999 and the government’s response to these reviews. The purpose of the paper is to document the process and compromises that have shaped federal environmental protection, and explore the policy paralysis this has produced.


regulation; environmental protection; policy; federal responsibilities

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