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ENVI Committee Meeting

Notices of Meeting include information about the subject matter to be examined by the committee and date, time and place of the meeting, as well as a list of any witnesses scheduled to appear. The Evidence is the edited and revised transcript of what is said before a committee. The Minutes of Proceedings are the official record of the business conducted by the committee at a sitting.

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Minutes of Proceedings

44th Parliament, 1st Session
Meeting 95
Tuesday, February 6, 2024, 3:46 p.m. to 6:10 p.m.
Francis Scarpaleggia, Chair (Liberal)

• Ron Liepert for Monique Pauzé (Conservative)
• Mario Simard for Gérard Deltell (Bloc Québécois)
Library of Parliament
• Alison Clegg, Analyst
• Sarah Yakobowski, Analyst
As an individual
• James Famiglietti, Professor, Arizona State University
• Marie Larocque, Professor, Université du Québec à Montréal
• Beth Parker, Professor, University of Guelph, Director, Morwick G360 Groundwater Research Institute
• Mike Wei, Professional Engineer
Alberta Irrigation Districts Association
• Alex Ostrop, Chair
• Richard Phillips, Vice-Chair
Environmental Defence Canada
• Aliénor Rougeot, Program Manager, Climate and Energy
Irrigation Saskatchewan
• Jillian Brown, Executive Director, Saskatchewan Irrigation Projects Association
Pursuant to Standing Order 108(2) and the motion adopted by the committee on Tuesday, April 26, 2022, the committee resumed its study of freshwater.

James Famiglietti, Marie Larocque, Aliénor Rougeot and Alex Ostrop made statements and, with Richard Phillips, answered questions.

At 4:09 p.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 4:09 p.m., the sitting resumed.


Branden Leslie moved, — Given that:

  1. Minister Guilbeault testified at committee that he ‘had conversations with five or six senators’ on Bill C-234;
  2. Minister Guilbeault testified at committee that he would provide the list of ‘five or six senators’ to the committee;
  3. Minister Guilbeault failed to provide the committee with the list of senators for 49 days;
  4. The Department of Environment only provided the committee with a list of three senators that Minister Guilbeault ‘held discussions with’ on Bill C-234; and
  5. The written response provided by the Department of Environment directly contradicts the testimony of Minister Guilbeault and therefore the Minister failed to provide the entire list of senators he discussed Bill C-234 with to the committee;

Pursuant to Standing Order 108(1)(a), the committee immediately invite Minister Guilbeault and departmental officials to appear before the Standing Committee on Environment to testify on his environmental policies and involvement in Bill C-234 for no less than one hour; and to determine if there was a breach of parliamentary privilege and report the committee’s findings to the House.

Debate arose thereon.


Adam van Koeverden moved, — That the debate be now adjourned.

The question was put on the motion and it was agreed to on the following recorded division:

YEAS: Shafqat Ali, Sophie Chatel, Laurel Collins, Lloyd Longfield, Mario Simard, Leah Taylor Roy, Adam van Koeverden — 7;

NAYS: Michael Kram, Branden Leslie, Ron Liepert, Dan Mazier — 4.

Questioning of the witnesses resumed.

At 5:07 p.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 5:10 p.m., the sitting resumed.

Beth Parker, Mike Wei and Jillian Brown made statements and answered questions.

Laurel Collins gave notice of the following motion:

Given that:

The climate crisis is exacerbating drought conditions in western Canada;

Southern Alberta’s agricultural sector is suffering economically from multi-year droughts, with impacts to our food supply chains;

Much more must be done by the federal government to ensure healthy watersheds and resilience to droughts;

The oil and gas industry used nearly 12% of water diverted from Alberta’s rivers and lakes in 2020; and Droughts are likely to become more frequent and severe as global temperatures rise.

The committee express its concerns over the continuous expansion of the oil and gas sector with seemingly no plans to scale down activity and urges the federal government to do more to build drought resilience through watershed investments, and phase-out fossil fuels while transitioning workers to sustainable, unionized, and well-paying jobs.

Questioning of the witnesses resumed.

At 6:10 p.m., the committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.

Natalie Jeanneault
Clerk of the committee