Environmental Assessments

An Environmental Assessment or EA is the process of determining what environmental impacts, if any, there will be during a project and how to minimize the impacts. The Ontario Environmental Assessment Act requires Ontario municipalities to complete an EA when undertaking municipal road, water and wastewater projects.

By eliminating or reducing effects on the environment, the municipality can avoid expensive, and sometimes controversial, remedial action once the project has been completed. Over the long term, environmental assessment provides decision makers with the kind of information they need to approve projects that are suitable with a healthy, sustainable environment for both present and future generations.

There are two types of environmental assessment planning and approval processes:

  1. Individual Environmental Assessments - projects for which a Terms of Reference and an individual environmental assessment are carried out and submitted to the Minister of the Environment for review and approval.
  2. Class Environmental Assessments – projects that are approved subject to compliance with an approved class environmental assessment process with respect to a class of undertakings, such as roads, water, and wastewater. Typically used by municipalities, including the City of Hamilton.

Class Environmental Assessments

The following EAs are being carried out in accordance with the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment Process that the City of Hamilton must follow under the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act: