May 16, 2005

Agreement allows firm to address ODS charges under CEPA

A Montreal firm, Handee Products, and its president, Barry Joseph Gardyn, recently signed an alternative environmental protection measures agreement after being charged with importing and selling products containing chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), in violation of the ozone-depleting substances (ODS) regulations under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999.

Environment Canada laid the charges after an investigation which found that between April and September 2002, the company and its president illegally imported and sold streamers in aerosol containers bearing the brand name "Party Crazy String". These cans contain a propellant composed mainly of CFC-11 and CFC-12.

In this case, the department proposed that the defendant participate in the Environmental Protection Alternative Measures program. The alternative measures agreement requires Handee Products and its president to implement a company-specific operating procedure and management policy relating to the prohibition of the manufacture, importation and sale of products containing CFCs.

The defendants must also prepare an article for publication in a Canadian Importers and Exporters Association information bulletin, and must make a payment of $100,000 to be deposited into the Environmental Damages Fund for damages caused to the environment.

The terms and conditions of the agreement are to be fulfilled within 18 months; failure to do so means the case will automatically be brought before the courts. Under provisions of CELPA 1999, Handee Products and its president would then be liable to a fine of not more than $300,000 and to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months.

More information is available from Anne Le Bourdais of Environment Canada's Quebec region office, 514/283-2343.

environmental protection alternative measures as set out in subsection 296(1) of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 to answer to charges of having contravened to paragraphs 272(1) a) and b) of the same law.

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