“In February, federal NDP MP Charlie Angus introduced a bill that threatened fines and jail time for Canada’s oil and gas industry if they tried to defend their record on the environment. Canadians were immediately outraged, and the bill was laughed away as being just plain crazy.

“A few months later, through last-minute amendments to Bill C-59, MP Charlie Angus has managed to sneak his bill in through the back door.

“Supported by the federal Bloc Québécois, NDP and Liberals, the bill will clear the way for environmental activists to sue oil and gas companies over ‘misleading environmental benefits.’

“Environmental activists will be able to bring claims against oil and gas companies under so called ‘anti-greenwashing provisions.’

“Companies that wish to defend their environmental record will have to prove that their claims can be substantiated by an ‘internationally recognized methodology,’ a vague and undefined phrase that creates needless uncertainty for businesses.

“Any company not willing to risk millions of dollars in fines and legal fees will be forced to stay silent. And that is exactly the outcome that Minister of Environment and Climate Change Steven Guilbeault and the federal Liberal-NDP-Bloc Québécois alliance wants to happen.

“C-59 is currently in third reading in the House of Commons and may pass as early as this week. After that it will head to the Liberal-dominated Senate, where it will be rubber-stamped.

“C-59, put plain and simply, is an undemocratic gag order. It must be stopped.”

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