Canada Unveils Speedy Plan for Quality Project Construction

Privy Council Office

Today, the Honourable Seamus O'Regan Jr., Minister of Labour and Seniors, and Chair of the Ministerial Working Group on Regulatory Efficiency for Clean Growth Projects, announced the release of Building Canada's Clean Future, an action plan to modernize federal assessment and permitting processes and get projects, that help us fight climate change, create and support jobs, and grow our economy, built faster.

To advance work to secure investment and grow the economy in every region of Canada, the Ministerial Working Group on Regulatory Efficiency for Clean Growth Projects worked throughout its mandate to develop an action plan to drive clean growth project decisions to happen more quickly. This included seeking input and recommendations on how our assessment and permitting processes can operate more efficiently and predictably. The Working Group heard clearly that actions must be guided by transparency, coordination, clarity and predictability and that these processes must continue to protect Canadians and their environment. We also must ensure that Indigenous Peoples are actively involved from the very beginning, so they can reap the full benefits of clean growth projects.

Above all, the Working Group prioritized solutions for how the federal government can drive timely decisions and faster accomplishments, without cutting corners. As such, the Action Plan proposes concrete steps to make current processes more efficient by clarifying and reducing timelines, mitigating inefficiencies, reducing duplication, and improving engagement. Key actions guiding the Plan include:

  • Assessment and permitting targets of 5 years for federally designated projects, 2 years or less for non-federally designated projects, and 3 years for nuclear projects.
  • Establishing a Crown Consultation Coordinator to ensure meaningful Crown consultation with Indigenous Peoples on the issuance of federal authorizations.
  • Establishing a Federal Permitting Coordinator on clean growth projects within the Privy Council Office's Clean Growth Office and issuing a Cabinet Directive that clearly outlines roles and responsibilities for all relevant federal departments.
  • Using Natural Resources Canada's Regional Energy and Resource Tables, which are currently stood up with 11 out of 13 jurisdictions, to test permitting efficiencies and find better ways to coordinate with provinces and territories.
  • Amending the Impact Assessment Act.
  • Standing up a new Federal Permitting Dashboard that will provide a public snapshot of the status of clean growth projects which require federal assessment and permitting decisions, to improve predictability and transparency from start to finish.

As the world reduces emissions and decarbonizes industry, there will continue to be growing demand for Canadian resources and innovation. To meet that demand and seize the economic opportunities it provides, Canada needs significant and sustained private sector investment in clean growth projects. By making sure assessment and permitting processes are more efficient and timelier, the Government of Canada is stepping up to ensure we secure investments, attract and accelerate clean growth projects, and build the projects that position us for success now and for generations to come.

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