New Brunswick Environmental Regulations and Legislation

A number of regulations, guidelines, and legislative acts have been adopted in New Brunswick, including guidelines on waste disposal and reduction, and air and water quality.

Environmental Regulations

The list of environmental regulations adopted in New Brunswick is quite long and includes the Water Well Regulation, Ozone Depleting Substance Regulation, Air Quality Regulation, and Protected Area Exemption Regulation. The Air Quality Regulation, for example, lists prohibitions on gasoline and volatile compounds, permissible ground level concentrations, and smoke density standards. The Ozone Depleting Substance Regulation includes provisions on prohibited sterilization systems and solvents and prohibited containers, wrapping, and packaging. There are also provisions on equipment labeling, modifying equipment, and disposal and dismantling.

Environmental Legislation

Major acts that regulate pesticides and water and air quality include the Pesticides Control Act, Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, and Clean Environment Act. The main focus of the Clean Environment Act is on activities and materials that contribute to environmental contamination. The act contains regulations on the imposition of fines, offences and penalties, and approvals, permits, licenses, and registrations. The Clean Air Act provides for increased public involvement when it comes to contracts and projects related to air emissions. The act contains a number of prohibitions, including prohibitions on pull tabs and plastic rings, on distribution by unregistered distributors, and on promoting recyclables. The Clean Water Act includes provisions on the restoration of personal property, premises, and land, testing of water, and Crown control of water. There are also provisions on protected areas, water posing health risks, and well-drilling. The act also details the penalties imposed to persons who fail to comply with the provisions, including provisions on standards, terms, limitations, and prohibitions. Under the Clean Water Act, the Lieutenant-Governor in Council has the powers to develop regulations on the removal, handling, and release of solids, gases, wastes, and contaminants from water.  The Lieutenant-Governor also has the powers to develop regulations on costs that must be paid or recovered and to remedy, rehabilitate, modify, eliminate, and rectify matters that fall under the act. Finally, the Pesticides Control Act contains provisions on the disposal and use of pesticides, including prohibitions and restrictions on the use, supply, and sale of pesticides. The act also includes provisions on permits and licenses, operator’s and vendor’s licenses, and the need for certificates and permits. There is also a prohibition on the discharge of substances that are used to wash pesticide containers. Under the act, the Minister has the powers to prohibit or restrict the distribution, use, processing, and sale of contaminated water, plants, animals, feed, food, or crops. Contaminated water, plants, animals, or crops must be either decontaminated or destroyed. Inspectors are responsible for monitoring compliance with the provisions, taking samples, as well as reviewing documents, registers, and records on the use, application, distribution, supply, and purchase and sale of pesticides. The act also includes provisions on penalties and offences, appeals, orders of inspectors, and services of documents.

Three additional acts concern environmental protection, the Beverage Containers Act, Environment Trust Fund Act, and Unsightly Premises Act. The Unsightly Premises Act, for example, sets out the requirements for premises upkeep. There are provisions on penalties for public safety hazards, interference with inspectors, the powers of inspectors, and notices to occupiers and owners. The provision on salvage yards enforces a prohibition on the operation and maintenance of salvage yards near different facilities. Salvage yards cannot operate within a certain distance from cemeteries, churches, hospitals, schools, and public parks. Salvage yards must not be located near public playgrounds, public bathing beaches, and highways.

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