Written by Preetika Preetika, Staff Writer

Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) Enforcement Branch is responsible for Canada’s environmental and wildlife legislation. In 2023, ECCC implemented enforcement actions, leading to significant fines and penalties for a range of environmental infractions. Below is an overview of the most significant federal environmental fines and penalties in 2023, focusing on the five greatest fines and the provinces where these violations took place.

Top 5 Federal Environmental Fines in 2023

OFFENDERVIOLATIONFINE AMOUNT
1Canadian Kraft Paper Industries LimitedUnlawful deposit of effluent$1,000,000
2Peace River Hydro PartnersContaminated drainage water$1,100,000
3Arctic Pearl Ice and Cold Storage Ltd.Ammonia discharge$755,000
4Plastique Royal inc.Non-compliant products$600,000
5Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.Fisheries Act violation$500,000

The severity of environmental violations is reflected in the fines and penalties imposed in 2023, which demonstrate the government’s dedication to the protection of species and the preservation of ecosystems. Prominent instances, including the penalties levied against Peace River Hydro Partners and Canadian Kraft Paper Industries Limited for effluent discharge and contaminated drainage water, respectively, serve as illustrations of the government’s commitment to environmental stewardship.

Provinces with Top Environmental Offenses in 2023

PROVINCESNUMBER OF OFFENSES
1Alberta2
2British Columbia2
3Ontario2
4Saskatchewan1
5Quebec1

The federal government enforcement actions are implemented with a twofold objective: firstly, to deter subsequent violations; and secondly, to cultivate an environment that promotes responsibility and accountability among both individuals and organizations. The financial resources derived from fines and penalties are of critical importance in backing up environmental conservation endeavors, underscoring the significance of adhering to environmental legislation and conducting oneself ethically across Canada.