In response to consultations respecting the ongoing negotiations of Canada-Mercosur and Canada-Pacific Alliance free trade agreements (FTAs), the Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA), joined by the Climate Action Network Canada, Council of Canadians, Greenpeace Canada, the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario, Sierra Club Canada Foundation, the Trade Justice Network, Unifor and the United Steelworkers, have collectively provided a submission to Environment and Climate Change Canada and Global Affairs Canada.
The joint submission outlines recommendations to ensure that Canada’s trade agreements hold member states and multinational corporations accountable for environmental, human health and Indigenous rights impacts, and respect national climate commitments under the Paris Agreement. Our recommendations are the following:
- The enforcement of environmental laws must not be restricted to matters affecting trade
- FTAs should place stringent, positive obligations on multinationals to uphold environmental, labour and Indigenous rights
- The continued inclusion of investor-state dispute settlement undermines democratic principles of law-making and justice
- FTAs should include a mechanism whereby the public can submit complaints, and request reviews or investigations of parties’ actions
The full text of the letter can be found here.