Review to assess opportunities for modernizing compliance practices including for responding to low risk nuisance complaints and incidents

ERO number
019-0042
Notice type
Bulletin
Posted by
Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks
Bulletin posted
Last updated

This notice is for informational purposes only. There is no requirement to consult on this initiative on the Environmental Registry of Ontario. Learn more about the types of notices on the registry.

Update Announcement

The email address of the contact of this notice has been changed to ComplianceApproachReview@ontario.ca

May 17, 2019

Bulletin summary

The ministry is undertaking a review to assess opportunities for modernizing compliance practices including for responding to complaints and incidents. During this review, an interim approach is being implemented under the ministry’s Compliance Policy for low risk incidents limited to nuisance type impacts related to land use compatibility.

Why consultation isn't required

The ministry is undertaking a review in order to assess opportunities for modernizing compliance practices . This review is expected to be completed at the end of 2019. If the results of the review recommend changes to legislation or policies, these recommendations would be the subject of a future posting on the EBR Registry. The ministry is not proposing any change to policy at this time.

Bulletin details

MECP follows a risk-based approach to assessing and responding to incidents and complaints to ensure resources are focused on higher risk incidents with known or potential health or environmental impacts.

With consideration of Ontario’s Open for Business Plan and the guiding principles of the Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan (Clear Rules and Strong Enforcement, Trust and Transparency, and Resilient Communities and Local Solutions), the ministry is undertaking a review focused on modernizing compliance practices related to incident response.

Incompatible land uses may result in nuisance types of impacts on those who reside close to industrial or commercial facilities. Nuisance impacts include those that may result in or have the potential to cause, minor or localized loss of enjoyment of property or minor or localized interference with the normal conduct of business.

The ministry classifies lower risk incidents as those of an administrative nature or causing only localized nuisance impacts. Consistent with MECP’s risk-based approach to compliance, these types of incidents are of a lower priority for the ministry. Municipalities have the authority under the Municipal Act to pass by-laws regulating these types of lower risk incidents.

Starting from the date of this posting, MECP will be implementing an interim compliance approach which will further focus compliance resources on higher-risk occurrences as defined in the ministry’s Compliance Policy.

This interim compliance approach will be in place while MECP together with partner ministries, undertakes a review of policies, roles and responsibilities related to modernization of practices for incident response including for low risk incidents.

The review will also assess policies related to ministry approvals instruments and whether additional low risk activities can be identified and added to the current list of exempted activities.

This review is expected to be completed and available for public consultation by the end of 2019. The purpose of this review is to ensure the ministry continues to be a modern regulator that focuses resources on higher risk matters so these are addressed in a timely and effective manner.

The ministry will also be reviewing MECP policies which support Ontario’s land use planning framework to assess opportunities for enhancements to further promote compatible land use decision making,and to avoid future nuisance situations.

If the results of the review recommend changes to legislation or policies, these recommendations would be the subject of a future posting on the EBR Registry.

This review is being undertaken to support MECP’s commitment to address environmental challenges in a responsible, effective, and balanced way by ensuring polluters are held accountable -- while reducing regulatory burden for responsible businesses.

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Eastern Regional Office
Address

1259 Gardiners Road
Unit 3
Kingston, ON
K7P 3J6
Canada

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