Today, the Legault government introduced Bill 66, which it believes will stimulate the economy in response to the current health crisis.
While I can understand the government’s desire to accelerate certain projects, including public transit, they have chosen to do so by reducing environmental impact assessments.
Under the proposed legislation, companies will be able to start working on their projects even before they have completed an environmental assessment. From experience, I know how difficult it can be to oppose a project that is already under construction compared to a project that is still in the assessment phase.
Politicians, citizens and activists need to be able to read all environmental impact assessments before making a decision on whether or not to proceed with a given project.
By attacking environmental protection measures that have been in place for many years, the Legault government is demonstrating that it is prepared to sacrifice the environment for short-term economic gains.
There is nothing wrong with speeding up the approval process, but this should be done by adding resources to the Ministry of the Environment, not through deregulation.
Leader of the Green Party of Quebec