The "brown and polluted" economic recovery

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The "brown and polluted" economic recovery

Federal NDP Leader Jack Layton says the Harper government is fighting the recession on the back of the environment.

A leaked document that shows Ottawa doesn't want to do as many environmental impact reviews doesn't bode well for the protection of Canada's land, air and water, Mr. Layton said Saturday.

The New Democrats first got wind of the government's plan in January through a Freedom of Information request, and raised the issue in the House of Commons at that time.

“Of course the Conservatives started hooting and hollering that we were exaggerating and that they would never sacrifice the environment to the economy,” Mr. Layton said. “Now we find out that indeed this is precisely what they're doing.

“This is the opposite of a green economic recovery. Are they trying to create a brown and polluted economic recovery?”

Environmentalists who released the document on Parliament Hill on Friday said they expect a bill to be introduced this spring that will aim to reduce the number of projects that require federal reviews.

- Canadian Press, March 14