Rod Northey is a partner in the Toronto office of the firm and a member of the firm’s Environmental Law Group. A passionate and relentless advocate, Rod is certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a specialist in environmental law and is in his 26th year of private practice.
Rod focuses on regulatory approvals, hearings and appeals. He has in-depth experience with the full range of approval regimes involving the environment — including land use, resource extraction, and infrastructure (transportation, energy, waste and water). Proponents retain Rod to prepare or revise their regulatory strategies. He approaches project approvals strategically, integrating different regimes, identifying inconsistencies and anticipating conflicts.
Rod’s current practice builds on his new 2016 Guide to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (LexisNexis). He is active in three current federal environmental assessments. This includes work for Halton Region and four municipalities in the Greater Toronto Area over a proposed truck-rail intermodal facility, and work for Marten Falls First Nation in the Ring of Fire area in northern Ontario over a proposed mining project. Rod is also assisting Henvey Inlet First Nation with the drafting of novel environmental assessment and protection laws applicable to a major green energy project on reserve lands. Other current work includes advice to public sector authorities in northern and southern Ontario on official plan reviews, cultural heritage bylaws and plans, and water power approvals and takings.
For the private sector, Rod provides confidential regulatory advice and participation in approvals, major transactions and strategy development.
As litigation counsel, Rod was lead counsel for a recent leave to appeal granted by the Federal Court of Appeal over pipeline and environmental assessment issues. He has been counsel in more than 40 reported environmental law decisions before federal and Ontario trial and appellate courts, and Ontario environmental and land use tribunals. His litigation experience includes multiple hearings over environmental assessments, provincial plans, hydrogeology, hydrology, wetlands, endangered species, noise, air quality, human health, agriculture, conservation biology and fisheries.
Rod teaches regulatory law on environmental protection as an adjunct faculty member for Osgoode Hall Law School's Municipal Law LLM program.
He is recognized by his peers in national and international listings, including Lexpert,Who’s Who Legal: The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers and Canada’s Best Lawyers.
Outside his legal practice, Rod is chair of the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation and the Greenbelt Fund.
Grey County v. Ontario (Director, Ministry of Environment) — 19 C.E.L.R.(3d) 176 leave to appeal to three municipalities against decision of director to grant groundwater taking permit to water bottling plant; following leave, company went out of business, so no appeal