Statement from the Commissioner of Competition on the Supreme Court’s decision in the Tervita matter

January 22, 2015 — OTTAWA, ON — Competition Bureau

John Pecman, Commissioner of Competition, issued the following statement today regarding the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision to allow an appeal by Tervita Corporation (Tervita) (formerly CCS Corporation) related to Tervita’s acquisition of Complete Environmental Inc. (Complete).

"I welcome the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision to allow Tervita’s appeal and embrace the clarity it provides on important issues related to the merger review process, including the framework for prevention of competition cases and the efficiencies defence.

I am pleased that the Court upheld the conclusions of the Competition Tribunal and the Federal Court of Appeal that competition would be substantially prevented as a result of the merger.

The Bureau will consider the guidance provided on efficiencies and any changes to our analysis and information gathering that may be required during merger review.

The Bureau is committed to principled enforcement and will continue to promote competition in the marketplace to the benefit of Canadian consumers."


Tervita is an environmental solutions provider that, among other services, provides hazardous waste disposal services to oil and gas companies. Prior to the transaction, Complete had recently obtained the regulatory approval required to open a solid hazardous waste disposal facility in Northeastern British Columbia at its Babkirk site.

Following a review in 2010-2011, the Bureau concluded that CCS’s acquisition of the Babkirk site would result in a substantial prevention of competition for the disposal of solid hazardous waste, produced largely by oil and gas companies, within Northeastern British Columbia.

In 2011, the Bureau filed an application with the Competition Tribunal challenging Tervita’s (then CCS) acquisition of Complete. The Bureau requested that the Tribunal dissolve the transaction or, alternatively, order the sale of the Babkirk site and related assets.

In 2012, the Tribunal ruled in favour of the Commissioner and ordered the sale of the Babkirk site.

Tervita subsequently appealed the Tribunal’s decision to the Federal Court of Appeal (FCA). In February 2013, the FCA upheld the order of the Tribunal requiring Tervita to sell the Babkirk site.

Tervita then appealed the decision before the Supreme Court of Canada, which heard the appeal on March 27, 2014.

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