Marie-Claude Bellemare  

Senior Associate

Executive Summary

A member of our Environmental, Municipal, Expropriation and Regulatory group, Marie-Claude Bellemare focuses her practice on environmental law, natural resources, energy, and public law, both at the provincial and federal levels.

Ms. Bellemare works with various clients from different economic sectors. Her clients include companies and institutions of all types, such as forestry companies, industrial entrepreneurs, oil companies, distributors of petroleum products, real estate developers, financiers, to name but a few.

As well as counselling clients on the impact of their activities on the environment, she also advises on compliance and regulatory matters with respect to environmental protection and natural resources management, and on obtaining authorizations and environmental permits. Moreover, she counsels certain clients on climatic change and greenhouse gas emission reduction (GHG).

Aside from her many years of practice, she taught environmental law as part of the Université de Sherbrooke Faculty of Law's undergraduate program.

Ms. Bellemare joined BLG after having practised with other leading Canadian firms and worked as lead in-house counsel (litigation and compliance) with a major Canadian forestry corporation.

Representative Work

  • Represented a subsidiary of a major financial institution in connection with the acquisition of an important manufacturer of plastic parts and components for the automobile industry. Represented that same subsidiary in connection with its acquisition of a controlling interest of a manufacturer of insulated pipes used mainly in municipal and mining works.
  • Advised a manufacturer of forest products on operational matters relating to compliance with applicable environmental laws.
  • Advised a manufacturer of chemical products on operational matters relating to compliance with applicable environmental laws
  • Advised a distributor of petroleum products on operational matters relating to compliance with applicable environmental laws as well as on the Quebec Cap & Trade System for Carbon Emissions.
  • Advised on the determination, description and application of the federal and Québec environmental regimes applicable to a project to develop an iron, titanium and vanadium mine in Northern Québec.
  • Advised in connection with environmental permit applications for increase production capacity of a flexible packaging plant.
  • Advised a developer and manufacturer of ammunitions on the application of provincial environmental laws to activities conducted on federal lands in the context of the shared jurisdiction over environmental laws between the federal and provincial governments.
  • Advised a waste and sanitation management company on operational matters relating to compliance with applicable law.
  • Advised on a project to develop a rare earth mine in Northern Québec and related facilities located in Québec and Labrador. Determined and described the federal and Québec environmental regimes applicable to the project.
  • Advised a manufacturer of rubber products in connection with the definitive cessation of activities, the sale of the property on which such activities were conducted and the related environmental obligations, including characterization and remediation obligations.
  • Assistance to an aircraft engine maker toward the company's continuing ISO 14001 certification (assembly of the legal register, information monitoring with monthly and yearly reports) and advised on operational matters relating to compliance with applicable environmental laws.

Publications & Presentations

  • Co-author, "Adoption of Québec Bill 102 : Modernizing the Environment Quality Act", Environmental Law Bulletin (BLG), March 29, 2017.
  • Co-author, "Bill 102: A Major Reform for Québec's Environment Quality Act," BLG Environmental Law Newsletter, November 23, 2016.
  • Co-author, "Bill 104: A Statute to Increase the Number of Electric Vehicles on the Québec Market," Environmental Law Bulletin (BLG), June 2016.
  • Co-speaker, "Emission Trading & Allowances: Fundamentals & Expert Advice," EUCI, May 2, 2016.
  • Co-speaker, "The Regulatory & Policy Framework: Learning From Other Jurisdictions' Experiences with Climate Change Regulation," OBA Institute program Hot Topics in Climate Change: Ontario in the National and International Contexts, February 3, 2016.
  • Co-author, "Top 10 Legal Risks for Business in 2016: Climate Change," BLG Publication, January 10, 2016.
  • Co-speaker, "Zibi, A New Community in the Heart of the Outaouais: Three Founding Nations, Two Provinces," One Project; OBA Environmental Law Section, Ottawa, September 24, 2015.
  • Co-author, "Green Light Given for the Modernization of Québec's Environmental Authorizations Regime," Environmental Law Alert (BLG), July 2015.
  • Co-author, "Enlarged Scope of Distribution of Information contained in Files held by Québec's Public Bodies," Environmental Law Bulletin (BLG), June 2015.
  • Speaker, "Formation sur l'évolution de la réglementation sur l'air et les changements climatiques," Quebec Business Council on the Environment (CPEQ), May 13, 2015 and June 1, 2016.
  • Co-author, "Fascicule 3 – Sanctions administratives, recours devant le Tribunal administratif du Québec et révision judiciaire," Recours en droit de l'environnement (JurisClasseur Québec, Collection Thema), December 2014.
  • Co-speaker, "La réglementation sur le bruit au Québec : où en sommes-nous?", Développements récents en droit de l'environnement, Barreau du Québec, May 30, 2014.
  • Co-author, "The Fisheries Act: Federal Rules Concerning the Protection of Fish Habitat Are Amended," focus, December 2013.
  • Co-speaker, "Les sanctions administratives pécuniaires en vertu de la Loi sur la qualité de l'environnement : un incontournable," Conseil patronal de l'environnement du Québec (CPEQ), November 2013.
  • Co-author, "Wetland Projects: The Legality of Certain MDDEFP Requirements is Confirmed," focus, November 2013.
  • Co-speaker, "La Loi sur la qualité de l'environnement et les sanctions administratives pécuniaires : où en sommes-nous ?", Environmental Law Conference, Éditions Yvon Blais, November 2013.
  • Instructor, "Les récents développements en droit de l'environnement : Quels impacts pour les projets immobiliers et les activités industrielles au Québec ?", Continuing Education, Barreau du Québec, October 3, 2013.
  • Speaker, "Revue annuelle de jurisprudence en droit de l'environnement (2012)", lunch seminar, Environment, Energy and Resources Law Section, Canadian Bar Association, Montréal, June 6, 2013.
  • Co-author, "The Quebec Carbon Market is in Effect!", focus, March 2013.
  • Co-author, "Sanctions administratives, recours devant le Tribunal administratif du Québec et révision judiciaire," JurisClasseur Québec, Droit de l'environnement collection, January 2013.
  • Speaker, "Responsabilité environnementale des administrateurs : Quels sont les risques et les enjeux pour les administrateurs et dirigeants d'entreprise ?", Continuing Education, Barreau du Québec, Montréal, May 2012.
  • Co-author, "Projects Affecting Wetlands: Coming into Force of Measures on Compensation," focus, Montréal, June 2012.
  • Co-author, "Regulation Respecting a Cap-and-Trade System for Greenhouse Gas Emission Allowances," focus, Montréal, January 2012.
  • Co-author, "Bill 89: Intervention Strategies Refinement and Reinforcement for the Protection of the Environment," focus, Montréal, November 2011.
  • Speaker, "L'eau : une ressource bien protégée ?", colloque Droit, affaires et développement durable – 4th edition, Montréal, October 2011.
  • Speaker, "Keynote BAPE: What are the Implications for Industry and the Future of Shale Development in Quebec?", Eastern Canada Shale Gas Symposium, The Canadian Institute, March 2011.
  • Speaker, "Transactions commerciales impliquant des terrains et des activités industrielles/commerciales : Le droit de l'environnement, une composante inévitable!", Montréal, February and April 2010.
  • Speaker, "GHG Emissions: The Experience and Perspective of a Forest Products Company", L'Association du Barreau canadien, 2008 Canadian Legal Conference Managing, Québec City, August 2008.
  • Instructor, "Droit national de l'environnement," Faculty of Law, Université de Sherbrooke, 2005-2007.
  • Speaker, "Le nouveau règlement sur les compensations financières pour la collecte sélective municipale," Gestion et élimination des matières résiduelles, Insight, Montréal, October 2005.
  • Author, "La police verte ! Que faire ?", Spring 2005.
  • Speaker, "Nouveau régime de compensation aux municipalités," Récupération et valorisation des matières résiduelles, Insight, Montréal, December 2004.
  • Speaker, "La sécurité civile et les urgences environnementales : De nouvelles obligations pour l'industrie ?", Law and Environmental Management, The Canadian Institute, Montréal, December 2004.
  • Co-author, "Cadre et problématique juridiques (Bill 72 )", Inter-departmental committee on urban renewal, August 2004.
  • Speaker, "Interaction entre la Loi 72 et la Politique de protection des sols et de réhabilitation des terrains contaminés," Les sols contaminés, Insight, Montréal, April 2004.
  • Author, "Une usine explicitée en conformité avec la réglementation environnementale peut-elle être tenue responsable pour troubles de voisinage ?", December 2003.
  • Contribution, "Changements climatiques au Canada et au Québec : Quels défis pour le droit de l'environnement ?", Développement récents en droit de l'environnement, Continuing Education, Barreau du Québec, Montréal, May 2003.
  • Contribution, "L'évaluation environnementale des projets énergétiques au Québec," 2nd Annual Québec Forum on Electricity, The Canadian Institute, Montréal, March 2003.
  • Speaker, "Cadre juridique de la protection de la qualité des eaux au Québec," Environmental Law, Insight, Montréal, January 2003.
  • Contribution, "Les leçons à retenir de Walkerton et de North Battleford," Forum québécois sur la gestion de l'eau, The Canadian Institute, Montréal, December 2002.
  • Co-presenter, "Wind Power in the Great White North: Wind Energy in Canada," Wind Energy Conference, IBC, Boston, August 2002.
  • Contribution, "Les gaz à effet de serre et changements climatiques : Pourquoi votre entreprise devrait-elle s'en occuper ?", Law and Environmental Management in Québec, The Canadian Institute, Montréal, January 2002.
  • Contribution, "Le nouveau cadre de gestion pour la production indépendante au Québec : Répercussions juridiques et écueils à éviter," Québec Forum on Electricity, The Canadian Institute, Montréal, November 2001.
  • Author, newsletter on various environmental law and energy subjects and issues (2001-2007).

Rankings & Recognitions

  • Recognized as a 2017 Acritas Star.
  • Recognized in the 2017 edition of Chambers Canada Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business (Environment).
  • Recognized in the 2017 edition (and since 2010) of The Best Lawyers in Canada® (Environmental Law).
  • Recognized in the 2015/2016 edition of the Lexpert® Special Edition on Global Mining.
  • Recognized in the 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014 editions of The Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory (Environmental Law).
  • Recipient of many prizes and medals including the Albert-Leblanc Medal (1999), the Carswell Prize (1999), and the Prix Émissaire (2000), awarded by the alumni association to honour a graduate whose achievements contribute to the reputation and development of the university.