Keywords: Balance of convenience; irreparable harm
A Pollution Prevention Order was issued to Metalex Products Ltd. (Metalex) ordering it to stop dumping slag at the Dankoe Mine and to remove the existing slag pile. On appeal to the Deputy Director of Waste Management, the Order was amended to require a risk assessment to be completed by January 31, 1997 to determine whether the entire slag pile should be removed and, if so, when. If the assessment was not done by that date, the pile was to be removed by March 28, 1997. The Order also required the terms of reference for the assessment to be approved by the Regional Manager before the assessment was started. Metalex appealed the decision to the Board. As the terms of reference were not going to be completed by the January deadline, Metalex asked the Board to extend the deadlines imposed by the Deputy Director.
The Board found that, until the Regional Manager approves the terms of reference for the risk assessment, the assessment cannot be done. The Board further found that there was little evidence of irreparable harm to the Ministry or the environment if the assessment is not completed by the January deadline and the slag pile is not removed by the March deadline. Conversely, there would be significant expense and potential irreparable harm to Metalex if an extension were not granted and it was required to remove the slag. On a balance of convenience, Metalex should be granted a temporary stay of the deadlines. The stay was granted.