EDMONTON – Federal NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair says a judge’s finding that Alberta’s Environment Department is trying to silence some environmental advocates speaks volumes about Premier Alison Redford’s government.
Mulcair says Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Richard Marceau’s ruling reinforces the public’s perception that the dice have been loaded in favour of developers.
Marceau quashed a decision by an Environment Department official who refused to allow the Oil Sands Environmental Coalition standing to speak at a review into the proposed Southern Pacific drilling operation in northern Alberta.
The coalition had routinely been given standing before, but this time was rejected on the grounds it was not directly affected by the project.
However Marceau ruled the official was biased because a departmental memo stated the coalition was to be denied standing because it had been publicly critical of the oilsands.
Environment Minister Diana McQueen is in Europe and has yet to respond to the issue.