Capping a series of related reports on the topic , the Alberta Environment Law Centre published Environmental Rights in Alberta: An annotated Environmental Bill of Rights for Alberta in March. The report consists of model provisions for a statute, along with annotations providing background information. Amongst the proposed provisions is protection from reprisals for employees (Whistleblower protection) – which would expand protection from reprisals beyond the existing Alberta legislation, the Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblower) Protection Act, which protects government employees only.
To encourage broad public participation on environmental issues, the report also addresses the issue of Strategic lawsuits against public participation (SLAPP suits) – “A SLAPP suit is a claim for monetary damages against individuals who have dealt with a government body on an issue of public interest or concern. It is a meritless action filed by a plaintiff whose primary goal is not to win the case but rather to silence or intimidate citizens who have participated in proceedings regarding public policy or public decision making.”
From the introduction: “It should be noted at the outset that the Environmental Law Centre drew greatly from David Boyd’s enormous academic contributions in this area. In particular, his article Elements of an Effective Environmental Bill of Rights was an invaluable resource in designing our model EBR” . Boyd’s most recent book is The Rights of Nature: A Legal Revolution that Could Save the World (Toronto: 2017, ECW Press).