News release

Amendments Strengthen Boat Harbour Act

Legislation introduced today, April 7, clarifies a section of the Boat Harbour Act that prohibits legal claims against the Province for the closure of the Boat Harbour effluent treatment facility.

Sec. 4(1) of the act, which was passed in 2015, currently states that “no action” can be taken against the Province. With the proposed amendment, it would state: “No action, including action for damages or any other compensation…” This new language further strengthens the prohibition against legal action and is consistent with the original intent of the legislation.

“The Boat Harbour Act is an important piece of legislation that protects the environment. It also prevents legal action against the Province. Adding clearer language in the legislation makes our intention very clear,” said Brad Johns, Attorney General and Minister of Justice. “The Province has an obligation to protect the interests of Nova Scotia taxpayers. This legislation achieves that.”

The amendment will be retroactive to the date the act was enacted, May 11, 2015.

Quick Facts:

  • the Boat Harbour effluent treatment facility was closed on January 31, 2020, as specified in the Boat Harbour Act
  • remediation plans are underway to restore the site to its original state as a tidal estuary
  • the Province is investing $310 million in the cleanup
  • Northern Pulp has submitted a new effluent treatment facility project for a provincial Class II environmental assessment

Additional Resources:

The Boat Harbour Act: https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/boat%20harbour.pdf

More information about the Boat Harbour cleanup project is available at: https://novascotia.ca/boatharbour/about.asp

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