Wally Braul is a partner in the firm's Advocacy Group, and is one of Western Canada’s most highly regarded energy, Aboriginal law and environmental lawyers. He has been repeatedly recognized by Lexpert as a leading lawyer in energy, environmental and Aboriginal law, and by The Best Lawyers in Canada and Who’s Who Legal as one of Canada’s foremost environmental lawyers.
Wally’s recent work includes:
- Tribunal and judicial proceedings respecting shale gas fracking, water, pipelines, marine terminals, contaminated sites, tailing ponds and public utility matters.
- Strategic advice to senior executives of energy companies on how to respond to recent judicial decisions on Aboriginal title and new legislation respecting LNG and water.
- Negotiation and drafting of Aboriginal and environmental conditions — e.g. representations and indemnities — in share and asset agreements.
- Engaging with federal and provincial regulators to resolve environmental assessment, Aboriginal and permitting issues — involving pulp mills, mines, wind farms, fracking, pipelines and remediation of contaminated sites.
- Negotiations with Aboriginal groups in respect of consultation protocols and impact and benefit agreements in a wide array of natural resource projects.
- Opinions on civil, regulatory and quasi-criminal liability respecting environmental and Aboriginal law issues.
Acting for a highly diverse range of clients — including industry, Aboriginal groups, public interest groups and government — Wally brings a nuanced understanding of competing perspectives to form pragmatic business solutions and litigation strategies.
Wally maintains strong working relationships with federal and provincial regulators to keep abreast of unfolding policies and requirements. He has previously acted for regulators in litigation matters (including a precedent-setting case that imposed liability on a foreign subsidiary for environmental problems caused by its Canadian subsidiary), as well as law reform (such as the drafting of B.C.’s contaminated sites legislation, regulations and policy advice to the federal government on imports of hazardous waste).
Wally is a frequent commentator on energy-related legal developments, having authored numerous articles and presented at many conferences. He is also a contributing editor for the Environment Law journal. Prior to joining Gowlings, he was a partner of a well-respected Canadian law firm and served as the co-chair of that firm’s Aboriginal law practice group.
Called to the bar in B.C. and Alberta, Wally also holds a masters degree in urban and regional planning. Prior to practising law, he served as the director of land use planning for a regional government in northeast British Columbia.