The mission of the Legacy Fund for the Environment is to identify and finance lawsuits undertaken by citizens’ group in defence of Canada’s environment, to promote public knowledge and awareness of environmental laws and the legal recourses available to citizens, and to raise funds to support these activities. The Fund was incorporated in June 2015 and obtained charitable status in July 2018.
Principle Ten of the Rio Declaration adopted at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in November 1992 states that citizens have the responsibility and the right to care for their environment.
When this involves legal action, private citizens are usually at a severe disadvantage. By raising funds for citizen-initiated court actions, the Legacy Fund will be leveling the playing field.
THE LEGACY FUND
HOW WE OPERATE - PROPOSE A CASE
The Legacy Fund for the Environment partners with the public in identifying and prosecuting legal action in defence of the environment. We invite activists and their non-profit organizations (NPOs) to discuss proposals for legal action with us.
We select our cases based on criteria such as the importance of the case to society, importance of the case as a legal precedent, chances of success, cost and available funding and quality of the legal team selected. If the Legacy Fund adopts a proposal, we will enter into an agreement with the NPO and, because we do not have lawyers on staff, with the legal team selected to prosecute the case. This agreement will cover such details as funding, reporting and oversight of the case.
If you have a proposal to discuss, please contact us at the address below.
The Legacy Fund for the Environment
2075 boul. Robert-Bourassa, Suite 600
Montréal, QC H3A 2L1
Attention: Campbell Stuart
HOW YOU CAN HELP
The mission of the Legacy Fund for the Environment is to find and fund legal action in defence of the environment. We believe that there is plenty of legal talent out there, and many fine organizations ready and able to fight these legal battles – what is missing is the financial resources needed to deploy them.
The Legacy Fund does not have its own lawyers, and does not argue cases itself. Our focus is on raising the funds necessary to hire good lawyers to fight for the public. Our goal is to level the playing field with the deep-pocketed destroyers of the environment.
We call ourselves the Legacy Fund for the Environment because we believe a healthy environment is the greatest legacy we can leave to our children.
If you would like to discuss how you may leave an environmental legacy in your will, please contact us!
The Legacy Fund is a registered Canadian Charity and you will be issued a tax receipt for your donation. To give online, please click HERE or send a cheque payable to:
Legacy Fund for the Environment
2075 boul. Robert-Bourassa, Suite 600, Montréal, QC H3A 2L1
Attention: Campbell Stuart
We are always looking for help with fundraising, promoting our mission, public relations, case selection and management, and administration.
To volunteer, please contact us!
If you have a proposal to discuss, please click HERE.
BE A PART OF THE LEGACY FOR GENERATIONS TO COME.
Last updated on May 10th, 2022.
Here is a selection of some of our activities with our citizen partners:
Sauvons l’Anse-à-l’Orme: We funded three injunctions, two biodiversity studies and a fiscal analysis in defence of the wetlands, forests and the Kestrel Fields of the l’Anse-à-l’Orme corridor on the west island of Montreal. Due to these efforts and the activities of our partner and others, Montreal has announced the creation of the Grand Parc de l’Ouest.
Les Amis des milieux naturels de Laval: We funded legal research for this citizens’ group and, as result of our partner’s efforts, the Municipal Council of Laval has put a two-year reserve on twelve hectares of ecologically valuable land including five hectares of wetlands south of Blvd. St-Elzéar West in Chomedy, Laval with the intention to create a park.
Rosemère vert: With our assistance this citizens’ group presented to their citizens and the Town Council a financial analysis (conducted by former Westmount Mayor, Peter Trent) which shows that development on the Rosemère Golf Course (which they are working to keep green) would actually result in higher taxes for its residents.
Nature Hudson: A biodiversity study we helped fund found twenty-nine endangered species on the Sandy Beach proposed development site in Hudson, where the developer reported only one endangered species. The results are now part of the Environment Ministry’s files. In addition, a financial analysis of this proposed development showed the same result as in Rosemere. We also funded legal procedures in defence of the Willowbrook area in Hudson, which contains wetlands, forests and an important archeological site, the Ottawa Glass Works. The new municipal council has, in part because of these initiatives, placed a reserve on these two areas, thereby halting development.
L’Association des citoyens de Mont-Saint-Hilaire: We helped fund a biodiversity study for this citizens’ group in Mont St.-Hilaire to preserve an area at the foot of Mont-Saint-Hilaire.
Les Partenaires du lac Tamaracouta et de ses environs: This citizens’ group has formed to protect the Scouts Canada lands in the Laurentians known as Tamaracouta as well as adjacent forests. We assisted with the formation of this group and are providing funding for legal research.
The Green Coalition: We have funded a number of procedures, including an injunction, undertaken by the Green Coalition to preserve the Technoparc wetlands and forests in Ville Saint-Laurent in Montreal.
Eau Secours ! : We are providing funding for an appeal being undertaken by the CQDE for this citizens’ group, seeking to reverse a lower court decision denying access to records of the withdrawal of water from aquifers by commercial water bottlers.
Sauvons le Mont Rigaud: We are providing funding for legal research and possible recourses against housing developments on Rigaud Mountain in Quebec.
Protection Mont Gale: We are providing funding for legal and related research into a proposed purchase of a parcel of land in Bromont currently slated for development.
Sauvons la Falaise: We funded legal research into Certificates of Authorization issued by Quebec’s environment ministry which encroach on the protected area of the Falaise St-Jacques.
Sauvons la Forêt Fairview: We are funding research into possible legal action by this citizens’ group to prevent the destruction of a large forest in Pointe-Claire, Québec by a development project proposed by Cadillac Fairview, the development arm of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.
REgard Citoyen !: We are funding legal research by this citizens’ group in Saint-Joseph-du-lac to prevent the destruction of a large forest and wetland, including enforcement of the Migratory Birds Convention Act and the production of a related biodiversity study.
Trainsparence: We funded an appeal by this citizens’ group of a lower court decision refusing an injunction to prevent the cutting of thousands of trees in the Technoparc area by the Réseau express métropolitain.
Other projects that support our legal activities in defence of the environment:
Scraping Project: We are analysing, on an ongoing basis, Quebec’s environment ministry website for information on applications for Certificates of Authorization. With this information we will be able to forewarn local citizens’ groups of new projects to destroy their natural environment.
Fiscal Analysis Project: We fund studies that assess the true effects on municipal taxes caused by proposed developments under applicable municipal and tax laws.
Citizen’s Handbook Project: We are assisting, in partnership with TerraHumana Solutions, a curriculum for training citizens’ groups on how to integrate legal and other strategies in defence of their local environment.
Migratory Birds Convention Initiative: In partnership with Sierra Club Québec, we are assisting in a project to inform and assist municipalities in their obligations to protect migratory birds under this Act.
Chair in Environmental Dispute Resolution: We are working to establish and fund a Chair in Environmental Dispute Resolution at a faculty of law in a Montreal university.