Event Seeks Input from Coastal Residents in Advance of Promised Coastal Act

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, April 25, 2018

[Chester] – With the creation of a Coastal Protection Act for Nova Scotia now underway, the Ecology Action Centre (EAC) is looking to coastal residents for input. This Sunday, representatives from the EAC and East Coast Environmental Law (ECELAW) are headed to Chester to host an information session.

Nova Scotia is one of the only coastal jurisdictions in North America that does not have province-wide coastal policy or legislation to establish key protections or regulate coastal development. For over a decade the EAC and coastal allies across Nova Scotia have been petitioning for the provincial government to take a leadership role in developing comprehensive legislation for our coast.

Mark Butler, Policy Director at the EAC, is one of the organizers of Protecting Canada’s Ocean Playground With A Coastal Act: An EAC Perspective.

Butler and ECELAW’s Lisa Mitchell will provide an update on the development of a provincial coastal protection law at Sunday’s event. They hope the session offers participants an opportunity to talk about the act and how it can support coastal communities prepare for a changing coastline.

“With the increasing impacts of storms and extreme water levels in Nova Scotia, the implementation of a Coastal Protection Act that protects people, property, and our valuable coastal ecosystems is more important than ever,” Butler says.

During the 2017 provincial election, four of the five political parties promised to establish and implement a Coastal Protection Act. 

In September, Premier Stephen McNeil asked Environment Minister Iain Rankin to “commence the work needed to begin consultations with Nova Scotians to inform the development of a coastal protection act” as part of a letter of mandate.

“We are pleased that the government has recognized the importance of this issue and we will continue to work with them to develop a law that will effectively protect our coastal ecosystems and coastal communities," Mitchell says.

The event will invite participants to explore how a Coastal Protection Act can benefit Nova Scotia, how to support adaptation in coastal communities, and how to address increased flooding from storms.

“No one knows yet what the Coastal Protection Act will look like,” Butler says, “Given the importance of the legislation to a province with more than 13,000 km of coastline, we thought it was important to hear from those on the ground while we wait for public consultation to begin.”

Sunday’s event is free and open to the public. It will take place at St. Stephen’s Parish in Chester at 2 p.m. Due to space considerations, interested participants are encouraged to RSVP at ryan@ecologyaction.ca

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For further information, please contact:

Mark Butler
Policy Advisor, Ecology Action Centre
902 266 5401 (cell)

Lisa Mitchell
Executive Director, ECELAW
lisa@ecelaw.ca
902 670 1113

 

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