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NEWS: March 29 budget expected to speed up energy project approvals

More news is emerging today about what we can expect from the March 29 federal budget.

Today, the Financial Post reports, “Finance Minister Jim Flaherty plans to include new measures to expedite environmental approvals for energy projects in next week’s budget, as part of efforts to build new pipelines…, a person familiar with the document said. …New rules to quicken approvals will be part of the March 29 budget, the person said on condition they not be identified because the fiscal plan hasn’t been made public.” That’s at http://business.financialpost.com/2012/03/20/federal-budget-to-include-measures-to-speed-up-energy-approval-process/.

Last week, Postmedia News reported, “The federal government is taking steps to modernize the regulatory system around mining and resource exploration in this country, Canada’s natural resources minister (Joe Oliver) told industry players from around the world (at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada international convention)… ’There is no question that regulatory modernization will have a positive impact on the people in this room, this city, this province and this country,’ Oliver said.” That’s at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=13938.

While federal reviews on fracking are now underway – with an expected deadline of April 2013 – it can be assumed that the federal government also has on its agenda the weakening of any regulatory protections that may be proposed in this area as well, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=11506.

Recently, the Council of Canadians joined with 40 other groups to express concern about the defunding and limiting of public participation in environmental assessment review processes in Canada, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=13860.

For more on what we can expect from the federal budget – and how the Council of Canadians will intervene – please see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=14063.