The Role of the Provincial and Territorial Governments in the Oceans Sector

Table of Contents

Foreword by the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

As the lead federal Minister responsible for the management of our oceans, I am pleased to release this catalogue of oceans-related responsibilities and activities that are carried out by the provincial and territorial governments of Canada.

The provincial and territorial governments have provided the material in this document to give Canadians easy access, under one cover, to the various roles they play within Canada’s oceans sector. Even though the individual details of each activity are beyond the scope of this work, the paper is intended to provide the reader with a broad understanding of the total oceans program. It is a companion piece to The Role of the Canadian Government in the Oceans Sector.

Oceans have never been more important to our economic, social and environmental well-being. Fisheries and Oceans Canada — and indeed the whole of the federal government — is enthusiastic about the opportunities for the cooperative implementation and advancement of Canada’s Oceans Strategy with our provincial and territorial partners. They have played, and will continue to play, an important role in the sustainable development of our oceans.

I hope that this paper will help to build on the enthusiasm that exists in the oceans community. I also hope that you will take the opportunity to browse the Department’s Web site to learn more about the activities and opportunities that we appreciate as a maritime nation.


The Honourable Gail Shea,
Minister of Fisheries and Oceans


This report is an update of the Role of the Provincial and Territorial Governments in the Oceans Sector, first published in 1997. For the oceans-minded individual, it provides a snapshot of the scale and scope of each jurisdiction’s ocean-related activities as reported by them. For policy makers and students of Canada’s Parliamentary process, this document is intended to contribute a broader understanding of the Canadian legislative framework that is required for the management of oceans and coastal activities. This document is a companion piece to the updated document The Role of the Canadian Government in the Oceans Sector.

This document is a compilation of information collected from individual provinces and territories. It reflects significant changes that have occurred since 1997, including the continued growth of aquaculture, the decline and emergence of certain fisheries, the creation of Nunavut, the promulgation of the Yukon Act (2002), the increasing public focus on climate change and heightened security concerns.

All provinces with marine boundaries were invited to participate in this project. This report covers those that chose to participate.

British Columbia

A Supreme Court of Canada decision in 1984 (the Strait of Georgia Reference) held that, when British Columbia entered Confederation in 1871, the province consisted of all British territories, including dry land, coastal straits and submerged lands. Thus British Columbia owns the waters and submerged lands of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the Strait of Georgia, Johnstone Strait and Queen Charlotte Strait and the waters and submerged lands between major headlands (bays, estuaries and fjords). This ownership includes natural resources — “the rocks and docks" and the marine resources — “flora and fauna" attached and all subsurface resources. As such, provincial laws apply to activities such as standing on a beach, sailing in a passage, mooring in a bay, building a marina/dock or raising oysters in the same way that those laws apply to activities on land.

Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation

The Ministry negotiates treaties and other agreements to create economic certainty over Crown land and resources and to improve the lives of Aboriginal people. It is the provincial lead in Final Agreement and advanced Agreement-in- Principle negotiations, interim measures and other agreements with First Nations and the federal government.

First Nations and Tribal Councils whose traditional territories encompass coastal areas and which have signed or are currently negotiating agreements include:

  • Council of Haida Nation
  • Tsimshian First Nations
  • Haisla Nation
  • Heiltsuk Nation
  • Wuikinuxv (Oweekeno) Nation
  • Xwemalhkwu (Homalco) Indian Band
  • Klahoose Indian Band
  • Sliammon First Nation
  • Sechelt Indian Band
  • Squamish Nation
  • Musqueam Nation
  • Katzie Indian Band
  • Tsawwassen First Nation
  • Hul’q umi’num Treaty Group
  • Snuneymuxw First Nation (formerly Nanaimo First Nation)
  • Ditidaht First Nation/Pacheedaht First Nation
  • Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council
  • Hamatla Treaty Society (Formerly Kwakiutl Laich-Kwil-Tach K’ómoks Nations Treaty Society)
  • Kwakiutl Nation (negotiations suspended)
  • Te’Mexw Treaty Association
  • Klahoose Indian Band
  • Maa-nulth First Nations
  • Namgis Nation
  • Winalagalis Treaty Group
  • Hupacasath First Nation
  • Tlowitsis Nation

Other First Nations whose traditional territories include coastal areas but which are not in negotiations and which have not signed agreements include:

  • Nuxalk Indian Band
  • First Nations on Vancouver Island
  • Cape Mudge Indian Band
  • Campbell River Indian Band
  • Comox Indian Band
  • Qualicum Indian Band

Ocean management issues raised by First Nations in the Framework Agreements include:

  • Fish harvesting and management
  • Marine resources
  • Offshore areas and ocean management
  • Water rights and management
  • Intertidal and submerged lands
  • Ownership, use and management of renewable resources including fish and marine resources
  • Management of land, water, offshore, renewable and non-renewable resources
  • Foreshore and/or offshore
  • Salt and fresh water management of sea resources (fin, shellfish, crustaceans, etc.)
  • Pollution prevention
  • Fish and fisheries

Ministry of Advanced Education

The Ministry of Advanced Education (AVED) does not directly provide training related to the oceans sector, rather it provides provincial recognition to institutions that provide training, including training related to the oceans sector. These institutions include:

  • British Columbia Institute of Technology (e.g. Bridge Watchman, First Mate, Fishing Master, Small Vessel Safety, Master Mariner, Marine Engineer, Marine Emergency Duties, Restricted Operator’s Certificate, Visual Bridge Team training and Nautical Sciences Technical Diploma (Deck/Navigation Officers)
  • Camosun College (a number of Nautical training programs and courses)
  • Malaspina University-College (e.g. Fisheries and Aquaculture programs: Technology Diploma, Bachelor of Science and Post-Degree Diploma, as well as education and training through the Centre for Shellfish Research and International Centre for Sturgeon Studies
  • North Island College (a number of Nautical training programs and courses)
  • Northwest Community College (Applied Coastal Ecology, Coastal Guardian Watchman (Certificate and Diploma), Coastal Eco-Adventure Tourism Certificate and a number of Nautical training programs and courses)
  • Simon Fraser University (SFU) (Fisheries Stock Assessment, Fisheries Management. The Fisheries Science and Management Research Group offers graduate studies.)
  • University of British Columbia (UBC) (e.g. Oceanography, Fisheries Management, and marine, aquatic and fisheries biology. The Fisheries Centre offers multidisciplinary graduate studies.)
  • University of Northern British Columbia (e.g. Natural Resources Management — Wildlife and Fisheries)
  • University of Victoria (e.g. Oceanography, Ocean and Marine Sciences, Coastal Zone Management)
  • Justice Institute of BC (Marine Emergency Duties specialty courses)

In addition, the University of Victoria (UVic), SFU and UBC are members of the Western Canadian Universities Marine Sciences Society, which owns and operates the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre, offering a range of degree level courses for students from SFUUVic and UBC as well as community outreach courses and workshops for the general public.

As well, through the British Columbia Knowledge Development Fund (BCKDF), AVED provides research infrastructure funding support for several key sectors, including ocean sciences, aquaculture and fisheries. In recent years, AVED has provided BCKDF funding to Malaspina University-College for the International Centre for Sturgeon Studies, the Centre for Shellfish Research and the Shellfish Aquaculture Deep-Water Research Laboratory and Field Facility. UVic has also received BCKDF funding for Ocean Sciences, including the VENUS (Victoria Experimental Network under the Sea) project and the NEPTUNE (Northeast Pacific Timeintegrated Undersea Networked Experiments) project. These projects will allow 24-hour access to the world’s first large scale undersea observatory. UBC has received BCKDFfunding for several other oceans-related research projects investigating areas such as fisheries ecosystems and coastal transition zones. BCKDF funding has also been provided to the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre.

The BC Leadership Chairs, funded by the province, include two chairs related to Oceans/Marine: theBCLeadership Chair in Salmon Conservation and Management at SFU, and the BCLeadership Chair in Marine Ecosystems and Global Change at UVic. In addition, UBC and UVic have each been awarded two Canada Research Chairs in Oceanography.

Genome BC which is funded in part by the province, currently supports two extensive projects on the genomics of Atlantic Salmon at SFU and UVic, which is important to the impact of aquaculture on wild fisheries and the environment.

Ministry of Agriculture and Lands (MAL)

MAL fosters the social-economic viability and sustainability of the aquaculture sector. It manages the industry through legislation and is responsible for the issuance and regulatory compliance of aquaculture and fisheries licences.

Aquaculture Branch

Finfish Aquaculture
Virtually all marine finfish sites are located on tenured Crown foreshore and are regulated by the Aquaculture Regulations that govern cage structures, containment netting, net inspections and record keeping, boat operations, best management practices, predator avoidance and escape response.
Shellfish Aquaculture
Land Act tenure and a Fisheries Act Aquaculture Licence must be obtained from the Shellfish Unit before a shellfish operation can be developed. Only after a tenure and licence have been secured may the operator proceed with:
  • building floating or permanent structures for feed
  • constructing equipment storage
  • preparing for harvesting activities
  • setting up environmental monitoring stations
  • developing processing facilities
  • building other related infrastructure on aquatic lands and upland areas
Shellfish Development Initiative
Introduced in 1998, the initiative’s objective was to double the amount of Crown land available for shellfish aquaculture within ten years. Government has worked with coastal and First Nations communities and industry to determine siting and production levels for shellfish aquaculture. Pilot projects are underway at 15 sites on the North Coast and Queen Charlotte Islands.
Commercial Harvest of Marine Plants
MAL is responsible for managing commercial harvest of marine plants and ensuring that harvesting will not compromise habitat or traditional First Nations use of the resource.
New Technology Development
As part of the Salmon Aquaculture Policy Framework, three alternative (“green") salmon farming technology projects became operational. MAL has been assessing the viability of these technologies and identifying any limiting factors.

Fisheries And Aquaculture Licensing And Compliance Branch

The Branch is responsible for commercial aquaculture and seafood licences and permits. It monitors, inspects, enforces and reports on commercial fisheries and aquaculture industries to ensure regulations are followed and environmental standards are met.

The Branch issues permits for the commercial harvest of oysters from vacant Crown foreshore. These permits are issued only in areas where a harvestable surplus is available. Permits are not issued in areas fronting Indian Reserves without the consent of the First Nations, nor in areas deemed important for Aboriginal food fishery purposes.

The Branch licences fish-processing plants, fish-buying stations, fish brokers and fish vendors, aquaculture operations, and harvesters of wild oysters and/or marine plants. Compliance and enforcement activities include:

  • awareness, education, promotion and training activities
  • promoting industry best practices, developing cooperative partnerships and agreements contributing to government objectives
  • conducting monitoring, inspections and audits
  • investigating alleged legislative and/or licensing violations for marine plant and wild oyster industries
  • acting as initial contact for public and industry complaints for finfish and shellfish aquaculture and referring enforcement files to the Ministry of Environment
  • recommending administrative remedies such as licence suspension or cancellation
  • public reporting on the compliance status of salmon farm inspections

Introductions And Transfers (of Aquatic Organisms) Committee (ITC)

The ITC was formed with a Memorandum of Understanding among the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and the B.C. ministries formerly known as the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. The committee considers ecological, genetic and fish health risks associated with moving aquatic organisms in the province and provides decision-makers with advice on these risks.

Integrated Land Management Bureau (ILMB)

Coast and Marine Planning Branch
The Branch is responsible for coastal planning and policy coordination related to coastal and marine issues among other provincial agencies. The Branch’s Coastal Plans focus primarily on the provincial jurisdiction of foreshore areas and address economic development and diversification, environmental threats, land and resource conflicts, First Nations issues, and supporting informed decision-making in coastal areas.

There are two distinct levels of planning: local coastal planning and strategic coastal planning to identify broad goals, objectives and strategies for coastal and marine resources. There are three types of local plans: coastal plans to identify land tenure opportunities to guide decision-makers; issue-resolution plans to resolve conflicts or issues associated with coastal land uses and activities; and special management plans that provide detailed direction for management of specific uses or distinct areas.

Strategic level coastal plans developed thus far are:

  • Central Coast Land and Resource Management Plan
  • Kalum Land and Resource Management Plan

Local level coastal plans developed thus far include:

  • Baynes Sound Coastal Plan for Shellfish Aquaculture
  • Chatham Sound (on hold)
  • Clayoquot Sound
  • Cortes Island Shellfish Aquaculture Plan
  • Johnstone-Bute Coastal Plan
  • Kyuquot Sound Coastal Plan
  • Malaspina Okeover Plan
  • Nanaimo Estuary Management Plan
  • North Island Straits Coastal Plan
  • Nootka Coastal Land Use Plan
  • Quatsino Sound Coastal Plan
  • Queen Charlotte Islands
  • Sunshine Coast

ILMB is the provincial co-lead with respect to Marine Protected Areas (MPA) establishment and works closely with federal and other provincial departments on MPA-related issues. There are currently over 100 other protected areas that include subtidal lands. ILMB has developed a number of planning products including the BCMarine Ecological Classification and the identification of Valued Marine Environmental Features, which are key features of marine environments valued for their conservation, recreational and cultural-heritage characteristics.

ILMB has also been working on identifying representative and distinctive potential candidate areas for conservation.

ILMB’s Coastal Resource Information Management System (CRIMS) is an Internet-based interactive map for viewing coastal and marine data such as aquaculture, shoreline classification, selected fisheries information and offshore oil and gas information. Development of CRIMS is ongoing.

ILMB has also produced a Resource Inventory Analysis and the Coastal Resource and Oil Spill Response Atlas to support terrestrial and marine planning as well as several research projects throughout the province. An atlas has been created for the Southern Strait of Georgia, and a CD ROM digital atlas for the West Coast of Vancouver Island is in its final testing phase. Some of the data available relate to shoreline sensitivity to oiling, commercial herring food and bait fisheries, recreational finfish fisheries, commercial salmon net and troll fisheries, marine mammal information and the BCShoreline Classification System.

FrontCounter BC
FrontCounter BC provides clients of natural resource ministries and agencies with the information and authorizations they need to start or expand a business. Authorizations related to the Ocean sector include Commercial Finfish Aquaculture Licences (Crown or Private Land), Commercial Shellfish Aquaculture Licence and Angling Guide Licences (New/Renewals and Assistant Angling Guide Licence).
Coast Sustainability
The government is committed to the completion of three coastal land-use plans to define and implement ecosystem-based forest management and economic measures with First Nations and to establish theCoast Sustainability Trust. Other elements include moving forward with protocol arrangements with First Nations — including discussions to finalize protection areas in the Central Coast and the completion and implementation of coastal and marine planning.

The strategy focuses on economic diversification in coastal areas, particularly opportunities for First Nation communities. Two ecosystem-based forest management pilot projects are underway in the Central Coast with the Gitga’at and Kitasoo First Nations, Interfor and Western Forest Products.

Ministry of Attorney General

The Ministry provides the government with legal services, including drafting legislation, and represents the government in court and before administrative tribunals. The Ministry is the home ministry of the independent British Columbia Ferry Commission, which provides oversight and regulates fares and service levels of British Columbia Ferry Services Inc. (BCFerries) on 25 saltwater routes.

BC Innovation Council (BCIC)

BCIC is a Crown agency that brought together the Innovation and Science Council of BCand the Advanced Systems Institute of BC Its aquaculture programs include:

Aquaculture and Environment Research Fund (Aqua E-Fund) Program
The program supports research on the environmental aspects of finfish and shellfish aquaculture. Current projects include research on bloodwater management and disposal, shellfish, sea lice, Infectious Haematopoietic Necrosis (IHN), benthic impacts and hard substrate seabed monitoring techniques.
BC Aquaculture and Environment Innovation Awards
The awards enhance aquaculture research capacity in BC by funding research positions of five or more years in duration.
BCAquaculture Research and Development Committee
BCIC supports the Committee which, through the Aquaculture Research and Environment Fund, periodically hosts workshops involving presentations by and participation from leading Canadian and international scientists to learn about new advances and to identify research gaps.
Vancouver Island Advanced Technology Centre (VIATeC)
VIATeC is a not-for-profit, industry-driven venture that promotes the development of advanced-technology industry on Vancouver Island through member services such as marketing strategies, business planning, networking, seminars, workshops and conferences. Among its partners are Pacific Offshore Energy Group, Oceans Technology Consortium and the coastal community of Sidney.

Other BCIC initiatives focus on ocean technology and research, offshore oil and gas and renewable energy, marine security and Cooperative Ocean Information Network (COINPacific)COINPacific is the hub of the west coast ocean technology cluster and forms the west coast node of Canada’s national ocean technology “network of networks." BCIC also provides a range of on-line publications dealing with the oceans sector.

Ministry of Community Services

The Infrastructure Planning Grant Program offers grants to local government sustainable community infrastructure development projects. The grants are available for long-term comprehensive plans that can include integrated storm water management plans, water master plans and liquid waste management plans. The grants can be used for activities related to the technical, environmental and/or economic feasibility assessment of municipal infrastructure projects.

Ministry of Economic Development

Economic Competitiveness Division

The purpose of the $153 million Canada-British Columbia Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund is to improve municipal and rural infrastructure. At least 60 per cent of funding is earmarked for green infrastructure such as water and wastewater systems, public transit and energy improvements.

The North Island — Coast Development Initiative Trust provides communities with funding to create opportunities for sustainable economic growth and more jobs. It invests in regional economic priorities, including transportation, tourism and aquaculture.

Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

Ocean Energy

There is growing interest in developing British Columbia’s ocean energy potential. Over 6,000 megawatts (MW) of wave energy and over 2,000 MW of tidal energy development opportunities alone have been identified to date. The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources and the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands are in the process of developing a Crown land tenure operational policy for ocean energy projects. In the interim, the new Ocean Energy Project Application Directive has been released to provide direction to provincial officials and proponents for administration of ocean energy applications and replacements to access, investigate and potentially develop ocean energy sites on Crown land.

Offshore Oil And Gas Branch

The Branch is responsible for enabling offshore oil and gas development in British Columbia. It is a repository of reports, presentations, publications, maps and other information associated with the development of offshore oil and gas resources. The branch continues to identify potential benefits and risks of offshore development, develop a comprehensive fiscal and regulatory regime, and advance scientific knowledge of offshore energy development.

The Branch also develops policies and programs to identify, stimulate the market for and facilitate British Columbia’s offshore oil and gas development opportunities. The Branch also participates in federal and provincial ocean planning initiatives to ensure offshore oil and gas development is factored into marine management decision-making.

It consults with First Nations and other stakeholders and provides information to the public. The Branch negotiates and implements agreements with other governments, First Nations and non-governmental organizations regarding the fiscal, regulatory, scientific, health, safety, environmental, socio-economic and financial aspects of offshore oil and gas development and ocean management. The Branch has concluded a Protocol Agreement with the Nisga’a Nation to work collaboratively on offshore issues, and has provided financial support for a project to collect and disseminate information to Nisga’a citizens on the risks and benefits of offshore oil and gas development. Plans are under way to bring coastal community and First Nations leaders together to work on a number of matters related to offshore development, including regulatory frameworks, benefits, risks and opportunities.

The Branch is investing in research and partnering with British Columbia’s universities to establish environmental baseline data that will facilitate responsible exploration and development of offshore oil and gas.

Titles And Offshore Division

The Division is responsible for tenure issuance, administration and compliance, land use coordination, and works to enable offshore oil and gas development to occur in British Columbia.

The Oil and Gas Titles Branch issues and administers tenures for Crown-owned petroleum and natural gas, geothermal and underground gas storage rights, and collects associated revenues. The Mineral Titles Branch issues and administers tenures for Crown-owned mineral, placer and coal rights.

Ministry of Environment

Oceans And Marine Fisheries Division

The Division leads provincial strategies and initiatives related to ocean resources and marine fisheries. Its objectives are to facilitate sustainable management and development of ocean resources, to influence federal management of Pacific fisheries to ensure that provincial objectives are reflected through collaborative decision-making processes, and to encourage the development of a vibrant and sustainable seafood industry.

While responsibility for oceans is shared between governments, management of Pacific marine fisheries is under federal jurisdiction. The Division ensures a strong provincial role in the management of fisheries and ocean resources through leading the development of provincial marine interests and objectives, creating collaborative provincial-federal resource management strategies, and developing shared governance frameworks.

The Division’s initiatives include enhancing the competitiveness of the seafood industry through traceability and certification programs and marketing the sustainability and quality of BC’s seafood industry in the global marketplace.

The Division’s Core Business Area Goals are:

  • Ocean Resources — sustainable and integrated management and use of ocean resources
  • Marine Fisheries — a stable and diverse marine fishery that provides social and economic benefits
  • Seafood Industry Development — growth and diversification of a quality, sustainable, globally competitive seafood sector

Environmental Protection Division

The Division is responsible for the design, development, implementation and evaluation of pollution prevention and remediation activities.

The Division manages the Environmental Emergency Management Program to protect the public in the event of an environmental emergency or disaster. The Ministry is responsible for provincial preparedness and response management for oil and hazardous material spills (marine and Inland) and provides support to other provincial agencies in the event of flood hazards, landslides, dam safety issues, seismic threats, submarine slides, water-related debris flows, erosion and accretion. The Division developed theBritish Columbia Marine Oil Spill Response Plan (2007). It administers the Environmental Management ActSpill Reporting Regulation and Spill Cost Recovery Regulation, trains and supports environmental emergency response officers and manages incident management teams and technical specialists.

The Integrated Flood Hazard Management Program consists of emergency management, dyke safety and land use management. The program’s goals are to reduce or prevent injury, human trauma and loss of life and to minimize flood damage to property.

Water Stewardship Division

The Division is responsible for the allocation of surface water, authorizing changes in and about a stream channel, and regulating the export of bulk water. It also provides guidance in respect of dike safety and land use management and supports other provincial and local government agencies in emergency management.

Water allocation is subject to the Water Act. Many rural wharves are dependent of surface water supplies. The bulk export of water is regulated under the Water Protection Act, administered by the Water Stewardship Division. Changes in and about a stream are regulated under the Water Act.

Fraser River Estuary Management Program (FREMP)

FREMP coordinates decision-making on conservation and development in the estuary among more than 30 agencies representing federal, provincial and local governments, port authorities and First Nations. The Ministry contributes resources and participates in management of the FREMP partnership.

Environmental Stewardship Division

The Division develops, promotes and measures provincial goals for the conservation of living resources, manages protected areas and provides park, fish and wildlife recreation services. The Division’s key objectives are:

  • management and conservation of the province’s biodiversity
  • protection of species at risk
  • protection and restoration of British Columbia’s watersheds
  • protection of fish and wildlife species and their habitat
  • stewardship of parks and protected lands
  • provision of park, fish and wildlife recreation

Eco-systems Branch

The Branch manages the BCConservation Data Centre, which collects information on plants, animals and ecosystems at risk, including status, distribution, life histories, conservation needs, recovery plans and more. Marine animals in the database include whales, sea otters, fish, birds, reptiles and invertebrates.

Parks And Protected Areas Branch

BCParks is responsible for the designation, management and conservation of provincial parks and other protected areas. Throughout coastal BCthere are currently 128 provincially designated coastal marine parks dedicated to the protection of natural environments for the inspiration, use and enjoyment of the public. There are also 20 marine ecological reserves established under the authority of the Ecological Reserve Act. The purpose of the ecological reserves system is to maintain British Columbia’s ecological diversity through the preservation of representative and special natural ecosystems, plant and animal species, features and phenomena.

Environmental Assessment Office (EAO)

The EAO coordinates environmental, economic, social, heritage and health impact assessments of major development proposals. It ensures that project assessments are comprehensive and technically sound, involve all potentially interested parties, adhere to the legislation, and are conducted in an open, timely and efficient manner.

Ministry of Forests and Range

Research Branch

The Branch studies the effects of forest practices on watershed hydrology, terrain stability and riparian function, and their consequences for stream channels and fish populations. Branch staff provide technical expertise in support of operational requirements related to watershed and riparian management practices, and are responsible for the provision of assessment protocols for the Ministry’s program to evaluate the effectiveness of current management standards and practices for protecting water and fish values.

Coast Forest Region (CFR)

CFR manages BCcoastal forests and provides advice, assistance and expertise on coastal forest management. It conducts research on projects such as alluvial fans, debris avalanches, channel stabilization and terrain stability.

Ministry of Labour and Citizens’ Services

The Employment Standards Branch administers the Employment Standards Act and Regulation, which set minimum standards of wages and/or working conditions for most employees, including finfish workers in the aquaculture industry and fishers.

Industry Training Authority (ITA)

ITA is responsible for the industry training system. Programs related to the Oceans sector include marine engine mechanic, marine repair technician, diesel engine mechanic and marine foundation programs.

Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General

The Tsunami Integrated Preparedness (TIP) project works with stakeholders, including local authorities, to enhance tsunami preparedness. Activities include:

  • the Tsunami Loss Estimation and Emergency Planning for West Coast Communities Study
  • a tsunami signage pilot project for provincial right-of-ways
  • a school education project on tsunami awareness and preparedness
  • creation of a Resort Owners and Operators Guidebook to tsunami risks for hotel, resort and B&B owners
  • research and implementation of alert and warning systems
  • funding for tsunami preparedness in 64 coastal communities

Ministry of Tourism, Culture and the Arts (formerly Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts)

The Ministry works with Cruise BC (an association of ports, destination marketing agencies and federal and provincial governments) to develop the cruise industry, enhance tourism growth and promote economic development throughout BC The Ministry is also responsible for Tourism British Columbia, a Crown corporation that promotes tourism in BC

Ministry of Transportation (MOT)

The Ministry’s mandate includes the management of provincial land used for ports, highways and ferries.

Fourteen inland ferries, including one near the mouth of the Fraser River, operate under contract with MOT. The Marine Branch ensures that operators provide safe, efficient and effective operation of all MOTinland ferries and ensures the maintenance and repair of inland ferries and docks, oversees the Coastal Ferry Services Contract between the province and British Columbia Ferry Services Inc., and ensures that the ferries operate in compliance with appropriate marine statutes and regulations.

The Sea-to-Sky Highway Improvement Project (along the coast between Vancouver and Whistler) incorporates mitigation measures for potential impacts on navigable waters and fish habitat.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — British Columbia

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation
Treaty Commission Act Establishes the B.C. Treaty Commission, which facilitates negotiation of treaties between First Nations, the Crown of Canada and the government of British Columbia.
New Relationship Trust Act Provides money to assist First Nations enhance governance, leadership and institutional and human resources capacity to address social, cultural and economic needs and priorities.
Ministry of Advanced Education
British Columbia Innovation Council Act Encourages development and application of advanced or innovative technology to meet the needs of industry in British Columbia.
College and Institute Act Provides for the designation of colleges, university colleges and provincial institutes and the designation of degrees.
Degree Authorization Act Authorizes certain schools to grant university degrees.
Private Career Training Institutions Act Establishes standards of quality for accredited institutions.
University Act Enables certain universities to grant degrees.
Ministry of Agriculture and Lands
Fish Protection Act Provides for the protection of fish.
Fisheries Act Provides for the licensing of fisheries, fish and aquatic plant processors and fish buying stations. Provides for the installation of fish protective devices and allows inspectors to enter private property.
Farm Practices Protection Act Protects farmers’ “right to farm" with respect to municipal nuisance bylaws; provides for aquaculture planning at the local government level.
Land Act Provides for allocating, managing and reserving Crown lands such as marine foreshores and estuary areas.
Ministry of Community Services
Local Government Act Provides a legal framework and foundation for the establishment and continuation of local governments.
Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources
Natural Gas Price Act Authorizes revenue from petroleum and natural gas production.
Mineral Tax Act Authorizes revenue from mineral production.
Mineral Tenure Act Provides renting rights for mineral extraction.
Mines Act Authorizes regulation of mining activities.
Petroleum and Natural Gas Act Authorizes royalties, freehold production taxes and regulation of tenure, production and plants.
Pipeline Act Authorizes regulation of pipelines and facilities.
Oil and Gas Commission Act Establishes the Oil and Gas Commission that regulates oil and gas activities and pipelines in British Columbia.
Ministry of Environment
Dike Maintenance Act Provides for the maintenance of dikes.
Drainage, Ditch and Dike Act Provides for the drainage, ditching and diking of lands.
Ecological Reserve Act Reserves Crown land for ecological purposes.
Environment and Land Use Act Provides for the designation of Crown land for conservation purposes.
Environmental Assessment Act Provides for the mitigation of environmental impacts through major project review and assessment process.
Environmental Management Act Provides for the protection of human health and water quality. Includes regulations for Waste Discharge, Hazardous Waste and Contaminated Sites.
Fish Protection Act Provides for the protection of fish.
Hunting and Fishing Heritage Act Affirms that a person has the right to hunt and fish in accordance with the law.
Park Act Provides for the establishment of parks, recreation areas and conservancies.
Protected Areas of British Columbia Act Legal designation of parks, recreation areas and conservancies.
Sustainable Environment Fund Act Provides funding for programs to protect and enhance the environment.
Wildlife Act Provides for the creation of wildlife management areas and critical wildlife areas and wildlife sanctuaries such as the Tofino Mudflats and Parksville-Qualicum Beach Wildlife Management Areas. Continues the Habitat Conservation Trust Fund, which provides funding for, among other things, the conservation of fish and fish habitat and the acquisition of land for the conservation of a species of fish, and furthers knowledge of fish and their habitat.
Environmental Assessment Office
Environmental Assessment Act Continues the Environmental Assessment Office and provides for an Environmental Assessment Process.
Industry Training Authority
Industry Training Authority Act Establishes the Industry Training Authority and grants it powers of authority respecting training programs.
Ministry of Labour and Citizens’ Services
Employment Standards Act Sets minimum standards of wages and/or working conditions in most workplaces, including those of fishers and finfish workers in the aquaculture industry.
Ministry of Tourism, Culture and the Arts
Tourism Act Provides for leadership to the tourism, sport and arts sectors in order to foster job creation, business development, dynamic communities and healthy, active citizens.
Ministry of Transportation
Coastal Ferry Act Establishes the B.C. Ferry Authority, which holds all shares in the British Columbia Ferry Corporation.
Fish Inspection Act Allows an inspector to, at any time, enter any establishment or any vehicle, steamship, boat, car or aircraft used for the carriage or storage of fish, and to open any container that the inspector has reason to believe contains fish.
Local Services Act Authorizes the Subdivision Regulations, which stipulate that, when a subdivision borders the shore of navigable waters, access shall be given in accordance with the requirements of the Land Title Act.
Land Title and Survey Authority of British Columbia
Land Title Act Establishes the Land Title and Survey Authority of British Columbia and provides for the registration of land titles and the subdivision of lands.


The Yukon Government obtained the right to administer and control its land and resources through a process of negotiating devolution with the Government of Canada.

In November 1998, responsibility for onshore oil and gas resources was transferred to the Yukon government under the 1993 Canada-Yukon Oil and Gas Accord. The Accord committed both governments to begin negotiations that would lead to the finalization of a shared offshore management regime and revenue sharing arrangement in the Beaufort Sea. The Accord also established an interim joint Federal-Territorial Offshore Committee as a consultative mechanism on administrative and policy decisions and issues affecting the offshore.

On April 1, 2003, Yukon gained control over its lands, forests, water and minerals, a power the provinces have but the other territories do not. Crown land is still owned by the federal government, though the territory manages it and has the right to resource royalties as part of the transfer of control over natural resources. Yukon’s jurisdiction extends to the ordinary low water mark of the northern coast of the mainland. In addition, it has jurisdiction over the adjoining area along the coast as described in Schedule 2 of the Yukon Act (2002).

Department of Energy, Mines and Resources

Oil and Gas Resources Branch

The Branch leads territorial strategies and initiatives related to Beaufort Sea planning. Its overarching objective is to position Yukon to maximize the potential benefits from oil and gas exploration and development in the Beaufort Sea, while ensuring environmental and socio-cultural integrity within the region. Another key objective is to work collaboratively with other government departments, Aboriginal groups, industry and other stakeholders in the region to encourage the development of a vibrant and sustainable oil and gas industry.

Under the Yukon Oil and Gas Act, Yukon is responsible for all onshore oil and gas resources, including those on the Yukon North Coast. The Branch manages and regulates oil and gas development within Yukon by:

  • conducting oil and gas rights dispositions
  • managing continuances of oil and gas rights
  • registering transfer of rights and security notices
  • licensing oil and gas activities and operations
  • administering oil and gas royalties and resource revenues
  • monitoring and inspecting operations for regulatory compliance
  • developing and implementing oil and gas legislation
  • working with Y ukon First Nations to establish a common oil and gas regime
  • supporting and coordinating capacity building, education programs and oil and gas training

The Branch mandate includes administering planned residential, commercial and industrial lot sales; land applications for commercial, industrial, rural residential, trapping leases, water-lots, quarries and enlargement of existing properties; land use permits for a variety of uses, including site clearing or earth work, constructing a new road, trail or access, clearing or installing a utility right-of way, conducting geo-technical or hydrological studies, and temporarily using or occupying Commissioner’s land; and quarry permits for sand, gravel and topsoil.


The Branch regulates exploration and mining activity and encourages its development.

Department of the Environment


The Branch is responsible for planning and managing territorial parks, including Herschel Island Qikiqtaruk Park, which is located in the Beaufort Sea.


The Section reviews projects and activities for their potential effects on fisheries, wildlife, parks, habitat, water resources and commercial wilderness tourism. It represents the Department in Yukon government reviews regarding impacts and mitigation for project proposals.


The Section coordinates the Yukon government’s role in implementing the Inuvialuit Final Agreement, including nominating the Yukon government’s representation on the Environmental Impact Screening Committee, the Environmental Impact Review Board and the Yukon North Slope Wildlife Management Advisory Council. It also coordinates the Yukon North Slope Conference.

Executive Council Office

The Office provides advice and other services to Cabinet and its committees, and coordinates interdepartmental projects through, for example, policy development. It also builds “government to government" relationships with Yukon First Nations.


The Branch works collaboratively with provincial, federal, and territorial governments and with other circumpolar jurisdictions such as the State of Alaska, drafts intergovernmental relation accords, and represents the Yukon government on Arctic Council initiatives.


The Branch works with Yukon government departments, the federal government and Yukon First Nations on the implementation of the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act (YESAA) which came into force on November 28, 2005.

Department of Justice

The Department offers legal advice and expertise to the Premier and the Yukon government on the oceans sector, as required.

Department of Community Services

The Department’s mandate is to provide better access to enhanced services, to strengthen communities, to protect communities when forest fires and other kinds of disasters threaten, and to make interactions with government a pleasant and rewarding experience for both the customer and the employee. The Department also focuses on community affairs and municipal relations within government on behalf of Yukon communities and acts as a liaison between community groups and government departments.

Department of Health and Social Services

The Department issues permits, standards, design specifications and guidance for sewage disposal systems. It also provides advice and guidelines on drinking water systems to private well owners and operators of small public drinking water systems.

Department of Highways and Public Works


Geomatic Yukon coordinates, supports and acts as liaison for geomatic activities within the Yukon government and with external parties. It addresses gaps in geomatic activities and data and provides a window through which spatial data and services can be accessed.

Department of Tourism and Culture


Heritage Resources coordinates and manages all aspects of land based heritage resources including archaeology, palaeontology, geographical names, historic sites and the issuing of scientific licences or archaeological research permits.

Yukon Archaeology (YA)
YA supports archaeological resource management and research responsibilities under the Archaeological Sites Regulations, the Yukon Historic Resources Act and the Yukon Land Claim Heritage Sub Agreement. It manages 2,000+ archaeological sites, including coastal sites, participates in land use planning initiatives, and reviews and assesses land use and development proposals for heritage resource impacts.YA undertakes archaeological research projects, including projects arising out of First Nation Final Agreements for Special Management Areas and Heritage Site development.
Historic Sites Program
The program provides for the research, preservation, management, development and interpretation of historic sites and routes, including coastal sites. Program staff take part in implementing the Historic Resources Act and meeting Yukon government heritage obligations under the Council of Yukon First Nations’ Umbrella Final Agreement and individual First Nation final agreements. It maintains a Historic Sites Inventory and participates in Historic Sites Planning throughout Yukon.
Palaeontology Program
The program manages paleontological resources under the Historic Resources Act, the federal Yukon Archaeological Sites Regulations and land claims agreements.
Heritage Branch
The Branch maintains the Yukon Geographical Place Names database and administers the naming and changing of names of geographical features.
Scientific Research Licensing
The Yukon Scientists and Explorers Act covers both social and natural sciences research throughout Yukon (except for archaeological and paleontological research).

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Yukon

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Community Services
Area Development Act Provides for designating as a development area any area where it is considered necessary to regulate orderly development.
Subdivision Act Regulates the subdivision of all land except for land in municipalities and land controlled by the government of Canada.
Forest Protection Act Prohibits the operation of a steamboat unless equipped with a prescribed spark arrestor.
Department of Energy, Mines and Resources
Agricultural Products Act Regulates the inspection of “agricultural products" defined to mean any product of fishing, harvested, collected, caught, taken, picked, packaged, processed or otherwise produced or processed in Yukon for human consumption, including fish.
Animal Health Act Prevents the entry and spread of disease. Defines “place" to include water; “inspector" to include the local fish health officer; “health certificate" to include, for a fish, a document issued and signed by a fish health official.
Lands Act Authorizes the sale or lease of Yukon lands or grant of a right-of-way or easement. Applies to all properties that are vested in Her Majesty in right of Canada but the right to the beneficial use or to the proceeds of which is appropriated to the government of Yukon.
Oil and Gas Act Provides for the disposition of oil and gas rights on terms that provide an equitable economic return and for the development of these resources consistent with the principle of sustainable development. Facilitates the common disposition and regulatory regime for oil and gas while respecting the respective jurisdictions of the Yukon government and Yukon First Nations.
Territorial Lands (Yukon) Act Reserves a strip of land, 100 feet in width measured from the ordinary highwater mark, for the Crown out of every grant of territorial lands where the land extends to the sea or an inlet of the sea or to the shore of any navigable water or an inlet for it.
Department of the Environment
Environment Act Provides for the protection of the environment including the maintenance of ecological processes and the preservation of biological diversity; promotes sustainable development and ensures consideration of environmental and socio-economic effects in public policy making.
Parks and Land Certainty Act Provides for the establishment of parks for the protection and management of representative areas of territorial significance and other special places.
Wilderness Tourism Licensing Act Helps sustain the wilderness quality of lands and waters by requiring operators to obtain a licence to conduct wilderness tourism activities.
Wildlife Act Defines harassment of wildlife to mean the operation of a vehicle or boat in a manner that might reasonably be expected to harass any wildlife.
Yukon First Nations Land Claims Settlement Act Provides for approving, giving effect to and declaring valid land claims agreements.
Department of Tourism and Culture
Yukon Archaeological Sites Regulations (Canada) Provides for the protection of archaeological sites and artifacts and the issuance of Class 1 and 2 permits.
Historic Resources Act Promotes appreciation of Yukon’s historic resources and provides for the protection and preservation, the orderly development and the study and interpretation of those resources.
Scientist and Explorers Act Requires that persons who enter Yukon to undertake scientific research obtain a licence from the Yukon government.

Northwest Territories

Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations

The Department manages and coordinates the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) participation in land, resources and self-government negotiations and accompanying implementation plans and financing agreements in the NWT. Self-government negotiations involve matters such as programs, services, jurisdictions and resources currently held by the GNWT. Land and resources negotiations focus on land selection; hunting, fishing and trapping rights; cash compensation; and economic benefits.

Department of Education, Culture and Employment

The Department does not directly provide training related to the oceans sector, rather it provides a broad range of programs and services to help northerners improve their skills and find work. This includes the Apprenticeship and Occupational CertificationTraining on the Job and Advanced Training Initiatives for the Oil and Gas Industry, which provide skill training for entry-level employment and for advancement in the industry. Program graduates can reasonably be expected to work offshore as oil and gas exploration and development in the Beaufort Sea - Mackenzie Delta region intensifies.

Aurora College may provide programs from time to time that could assist NWT residents in obtaining employment in this sector, including environmental monitoring, trades training and pre-technology programs. As well, the Aurora Research Institute issues research licences and has been the primary operator of the Mallik Gas Hydrates project in the Beaufort Sea.

The Employment Standards office administers the Employment Standards Act and Regulation, which set minimum standards of wages and/or working conditions in most workplaces, including those of fishers and finfish workers in the aquaculture industry.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources

The Department’s mandate is to promote and support the sustainable use and development of natural resources and to protect, conserve and enhance the NWT environment for the social and economic benefit of all NWT residents. The Department has several pieces of legislation and programs that affect oceanrelated activities. Through an agreement with the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), ENR officers also have enforcement and administration responsibilities under the federal Fisheries Act.


This Act regulates the discharge of contaminants into the environment of the NWT and allows for the development of guidelines, standards or practices relating to the preservation, protection or enhancement of the environment. The Act defines environment broadly to include the air, land and water and therefore responsibility for environmental protection is shared with other agencies, such as DFO.


This Act regulates the management of wildlife in the NWT. It does not include marine mammals, but does include polar bears, which spend much of their life on sea ice.


The program collects information on species of the Northwest Territories. This is a tool to give an understanding of species status and to assist in setting conservation priorities territorially, nationally, and internationally — especially across the circumpolar regions of the world. Marine animals included in the current version are polar bears, seals (bearded, harbour, ringed), whales (bowhead, killer, grey and beluga), birds and fish (cod, flounder, halibut, plaice and salmon).

Department of Executive


The Office of Devolution negotiates the transfer of provincial-type powers, programs and responsibilities related to natural resources to the NWT, including the transfer of the legislative powers, programs and responsibilities associated with the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) and the National Energy Board in the Northwest Territories (NWT), with respect to:

  • powers to develop, conserve, manage and regulate surface and subsurface natural resources in the NWT, with respect to mining and minerals, oil and gas administration, water management, land management, environmental management, and the management of archaeological resources
  • powers to control and administer Crown land with the right to use, sell or otherwise dispose of such land
  • powers to levy and collect resource royalties and other revenues from natural resources

Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment

It is the mandate of the Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment to promote economic self sufficiency through the responsible development of Northwest Territories natural resource industries and the promotion and support of tourism, trade and investment, business and manufacturing to create a prosperous, diverse and sustainable economy for the benefit of Northwest Territories residents.

Department of Justice

The Department of Justice provides legal advice, opinions and services and representation to Cabinet, the GNWT and specified public agencies. Its services include:

  • providing legal advice and support to government negotiators and officials in self-government negotiations, Aboriginal land claims and treaty entitlement, including the implementation of concluded land claims agreements
  • conducting civil and constitutional litigation, which entails representing the government in cases before the Territorial Court, Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, Provincial Court, Federal Court, the Federal Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court of Canada and administrative boards and tribunals in a wide variety of matters
  • advising on the GNWT’s liability from government programs and services

The Department is responsible for ensuring that all laws and regulations of the Northwest Territories respect the Constitution of Canada and the Northwest Territories Act.

Department of Public Works and Services

The Department provides technical support, water sampling and other services and reviews the designs of water/sewage systems. The Department reviews community operations and helps when there are problems.


The Division provides fuel sales, dispensing and delivery services in NWT communities not served by the private sector and provides fuel and related facilities maintenance to various Northwest Territories Power Corporation plants. Coastal communities resupplied by summer barges include Tuktoyaktuk, Ulukhaktok, Paulatuk and Sachs Harbour.

Department of Municipal and Community Affairs

The Department works with other departments to provide safe drinking water and effective sewage systems in NWT communities. It provides technical support, water sampling and other services and reviews the designs of water/sewage systems. The Department reviews community operations and helps when there are problems.

Staff take part in or give technical advice to a number of committees related to water quality, including:

  • Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board
  • regional water and health boards
  • NWT Water Committee
  • Potable Water Technical Committee - National Research Council’s Guide to Sustainable Municipal Infrastructure
  • Federal/Provincial Subcommittee on Canadian Drinking Water Quality Guidelines
  • NWT Water and Waste Association

CEM is responsible for supporting community governments in the areas of emergency preparedness and response. This includes local hazard identification, preparation of community emergency plans, supporting emergency response activities and mitigation initiatives. Community Emergency Response also supports the delivery of a Community Organized Search Policy and such searches may be conducted on land-fast sea ice during the winter season.


TEM is responsible for emergency management. This includes planning and coordinating response for territorial emergencies, as well as GNWT involvement in national emergencies. The activity also includes support for prevention and mitigation initiatives on a territorial scale or as part of a national program.

Department of Transportation

The Department plans, designs, constructs or reconstructs, acquires and maintains public transportation infrastructure, including docks and the highway system. It is responsible for five ferry and ice crossings and the 187 kilometres of ice road that link Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk.

The Department also serves as an advocate for the unique needs of the NWT in the Federal government transportation policy activities. The Department actively works with the Canadian Coast Guard and Canadian Hydrographic Services on various marine issues.

Remote Re-supply Sites Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) – The Department oversees the annual repair and maintenance contracts and capital programs for DFO for 19 communities in the Northwest Territories. The MOU includes the current marine infrastructure, such as the small craft dock facilities, breakwaters and the re-supply push outs.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Northwest Territories

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Education, Culture and Employment
Historical Resources Act Establishes the Northwest Territories Historical Advisory Board which advises on places and sites of prehistoric or historic significance and on the administration, preservation and maintenance of historic places and museums.
Scientists Act Provides for the issuance of licences for research (not including archaeological work for which a permit has been issued under theNorthwest Territories Act (Canada)) or the collection of specimens for use in research.
Employment Standards Act Sets out minimum work requirements for industry in the NWT.
Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Environmental Protection Act Provides for the protection of the environment.
Wildlife Act Provides for the management of wildlife, including polar bears.
Forest Protection Act Prohibits, during the closed season, in or within one kilometre of a forest area, the operation of a steamboat unless it is equipped with a device for arresting sparks.
Natural Resources Conservation Trust Act Promotes the wise use of renewable resources and awareness, enhancement and protection of the environment.
Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment
Northwest Territories Business Development and Investment Corporation Act Encourages the creation and development of business enterprises by providing financial assistance, direct investment and information.
Territorial Parks Act Provides for the establishment of Territorial Parks.
Tourism Act Provides for the licensing of persons conducting or offering to conduct any type of guided commercial tourism activity.
Department of Transportation
Public Highways Act Provides for the establishment and operation of a ferry over or on a body of water.
Municipal and Community Affairs
Area Development Act Provides for the Commissioner to designate any area in the Territories as a development area where the Commissioner considers that it will be necessary in the public interest to regulate the orderly development of the area, as contemplated by this Act.
Civil Emergency Measures Act Provides for the review and approval or the modification of territorial and community emergency plans and programs.


Department of Economic Development and Transportation


The Division is responsible for planning roads and marine and air infrastructure for Nunavut. The Division also serves as an advocate for Nunavut’s unique needs in the federal government’s transportation policy activities. The Division is active in the various oceans strategies and marine infrastructure development such as deepwater ports, small craft harbours and the Hudson Bay and Baffin Island Oceans Working Groups. The Division works with the Canadian Coast Guard and Canadian Hydrographic Services to meet Nunavut’s hydrographic requirements.

Remote Re-supply Sites Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) – The Department oversees annual repair and maintenance contracts and capital programs for the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) for all (25) communities in Nunavut. The MOU includes the current marine infrastructure, such as the small craft dock facilities, breakwaters and the re-supply push outs.

Small Craft Harbours – The Department is working with the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans to identify funding to implement the Small Craft Harbours Study. Seven of Nunavut’s 24 coastal communities have been identified as priorities for program implementation.


Implementation of the Nunavut Fisheries Strategy has gained greater momentum by recent announcements of increased fish quotas for Nunavut’s fish companies operating in Davis Strait. The Division is working on the implementation of the Nunavut Fisheries Strategy and completion of theNunavut Sealing Strategy.

The Division is working on increasing Nunavut’s allocation of the offshore fishery in Davis Strait and Baffin Bay to bring it into line with the allocations of other jurisdictions with adjacent fisheries. In addition, the Division has signed an MOU on emerging fisheries with DFO.

The Division represents the government of Nunavut as one of the lead organizations on the board of theNunavut Fisheries Training Consortium (NFTC). The NFTC is a major long-term training initiative that will be geared toward assisting the Inuit of Nunavut to obtain maximum employment and economic benefits from the development of a Nunavut-based fishing industry.

The Division also represents the government of Nunavut on national committees including the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers and the Atlantic Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers and their associated working groups.

The Division’s policies and programs foster growth in Nunavut’s fisheries sector through research, information on investment potential, liaison with DFO on fishery issues facing the territory, providing information to communities, profiling the sealing industry to Canada and the international community as well as training and sector development.

The Fisheries Development and Diversification fund provides a strategic investment of funds into an expanding area of Nunavut’s economy. The purpose of this program is to support the development of Nunavut’s emerging fishing industry.

The Commercial Fisheries Freight Subsidy subsidizes the transportation of fish between Nunavut communities and gateway Canadian cities (for char only) to allow Nunavut fisheries to be competitive in southern markets.

The Fur Pricing Program (jointly administered with Department of Environment) assists harvesters to sell their furs for competitive prices and provides quick upfront payments. The sealskin purchase component was introduced to help revitalize sealing in Nunavut following the market collapse in the early 1980’s. The program encourages the full use of skins, surplus to household use, available from the traditional food hunt.


This Division promotes the responsible development of Nunavut’s mineral and petroleum resources. This includes petroleum resources located beneath Nunavut’s internal waters and in the offshore between Nunavut and Greenland.


NT is a non-profit association that encourages tourism development by providing expertise in five areas: marketing, research, product development, training and visitor services. NT works in partnership with governments, Inuit associations, communities and tourism operators in order to take advantage of those tourism opportunities. Activities promoted by NT include sea kayaking, scuba diving, and iceberg, bird, whale and marine wildlife watching.


The Department does not specifically target companies operating in the oceans sector. However, it delivers several programs with the potential to reach those operating in the oceans sector. These include the Nunavut Equity Investment Fund that provides financial support to larger Nunavut businesses and the Small Business Support Program that offers financial assistance for new and existing small businesses.

Financial support is also provided to regional Chambers of Commerce in Nunavut and to regional Business Development Centres, which offer loans and other business services.

The Nunavut Business Credit Corporation provides loans to larger businesses that are unable to access sufficient debt capital from commercial sources. The Department, in partnership with Industry Canada, also operates the Canada-Nunavut Business Service Centre.

Department of Environment (DOE)

DEO is responsible for ensuring the protection, promotion and sustainable use of natural resources by supporting the management of the environment, wildlife and parks. Through its three program divisions,DOE delivers a range of regulatory and program functions and implements specific statutory and legal obligations of the Nunavut government, including a number of obligations under the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NLCA).


PSP is responsible for the planning, establishment, operation and promotion of territorial parks and conservation areas. PSP showcases Nunavut’s protected areas locally, regionally, nationally and internationally to ensure protected areas continue to reflect the Territory’s heritage. Several existing and proposed parks are situated on the coasts. PSP endeavours to develop areas that are important to Nunavut — areas that can meet goals for recreation, tourism, economic development and protection.


EP is responsible for protecting, promoting and enhancing Nunavut’s environment while encouraging the development of a strong sustainable economy. The environmental protection program provides and facilitates environmental protection and enforcement and manages the climate change file for Nunavut. EP reviews environmental assessments for land development proposals before work is allowed to proceed. It also provides input and direction into permit applications.


WM manages terrestrial wildlife species in Nunavut. In addition to the Wildlife Act (Nunavut), WM is responsible for fulfilling government of Nunavut responsibilities under federal legislation and national and international agreements and conventions, including on-going responsibility for the co-management of Nunavut wildlife as required under the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NLCA). Many terrestrial species, (particularly polar bears) are regularly found on the sea ice. Research, consultations and intended management for these species fall within the responsibility of WM. Through an agreement withDFO, WM also has enforcement and administration responsibilities under the federal Fisheries Act.

Department of Justice (DOJ)

DOJ provides legal services to Cabinet and the government of Nunavut. DOJ is responsible for ensuring that all laws and regulations of Nunavut respect the Constitution of Canada and the Nunavut Act. It is also responsible for constitutional matters, including implementation of the NLCA, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and all litigation relating to these matters.

Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs (EIA)

EIA provides advice and administrative support to Cabinet and the government of Nunavut. EIA works to ensure that the NLCA and Nunavut’s relationships with other governments in Canada and the circumpolar world are used to support common goals. In addition, EIA compiles, communicates and evaluates government programs and data.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Nunavut

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Economic Development and Transportation
Nunavut Business Credit Corporation Act Establishes the Nunavut Business Credit Corporation, which provides financial assistance (e.g. loans, loan guarantees, provision and indemnification of bonds) to business enterprises.
Department of Environment
Environmental Protection Act Authorizes the Minister to undertake various activities and develop and administer policies, standards, guidelines and codes relating to the preservation, protection or enhancement of the environment.
Wildlife Act Establishes a comprehensive regime for the management of wildlife and habitat in Nunavut, including the conservation, protection and recovery of species at risk, in a manner that implements provisions of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement.
Workers’ Compensation Act Provides for compensation, including medical aid, to workers and their dependants. Applies to all employers and workers in all industries carried on in Nunavut.
Civil Emergency Measures Act Provides for territorial and community emergency plans and programs.
Cities, Towns and Villages Act Provides for bylaws in respect to roads maintained at the expense of the municipal corporation on a frozen body of water or water course; provides for the provision of sewage and drainage systems
Safety Act Provides for the health and safety of persons.

New Brunswick

Aboriginal Affairs Secretariat

The Secretariat does not deliver programs or services but rather works in collaboration with provincial departments to enhance the government’s relationship with Aboriginal organizations and Mi’kmaq and Maliseet communities, including nine coastal villages.

Department of Agriculture and Aquaculture

The Department supports the establishment and expansion of sustainable, jobcreating aquaculture companies by providing an industry-friendly environment, offering a wide range of technical and administrative services, and developing partnerships and planning tools.

New Brunswick Aquarium and Marine Centre
Aquaculture research activities at the centre focus on the development of shellfish and finfish species for the growth and diversification of aquaculture. Emphasis is given to American oyster, cod and Arctic char as species with potential for aquaculture diversification.
Registrar of Aquaculture
The Registrar administers commercial, private and institutional licences, as well as occupation permits and leases for all aquaculture sites situated on Crown land.
Provincial Fish Health Laboratory
The lab tests and screens for disease agents affecting aquatic animals, provides diagnostic services for all licensed facilities including marine aquaculture sites and freshwater aquaculture sites and performs drug residue testing for the aquaculture industry. Surveillance and screening programs aid government and private veterinarians in determining the health of individual farms and the industry as a whole. Specimens submitted to the lab include live and moribund specimens, primarily of Atlantic salmon, but also include shellfish, crustaceans and other native species.
Marshland Maintenance Program
The program ensures maintenance of the marshland protection systems in Westmorland and Albert Counties to prevent the tidal flooding of farmland, public roads, utilities and buildings located below sea level. Infrastructure includes 80 kilometres of dykes, 76 aboiteaux (water control structures), two tidal dams, a bridge and 112 kilometres of roads. Staff monitor the integrity of earthen barriers, dams and aboiteaux and provide for their operation, maintenance and repair.

Attorney General

The Attorney General provides support services in a number of areas, including federal, provincial and territorial relations and executive support to the Minister and the Deputy Minister.

Business New Brunswick

Fisheries Financial Assistance Program
The program provides funding to the commercial fishery and the aquaculture industries to establish, maintain and expand operations.

Department of the Environment


The Division provides planning, scientific assessment and monitoring functions in support of departmental programs and services. Sustainability planning is a major role of the Division, bringing together air, water (including marine) and land planning to create a comprehensive management approach.


The Branch ensures that new developments and expansions are designed and planned in a manner that minimizes or eliminates environmental impacts. It coordinates the review of project-related information by provincial and federal agencies and ensures that proponents provide additional information for projects involving constructed wetlands and aquaculture facilities.


The Division is responsible for initiatives to control pollutants, promote pollution prevention and protect the environment. It is the Department’s regulatory arm and as such administers permits and approvals, monitors compliance and initiates enforcement as necessary. It also performs a stewardship role in managing issues requiring environmental management or remediation.

The Department shares responsibility for managing and protecting wetlands with the Department of Natural Resources.

Department of Family and Community Services

Income Support Program
The program provides financial assistance to individuals and households in need as defined in the Family Income Security Act. Assistance is not linked to a person’s previous circumstances, but would encompass individuals working in the oceans sector.
Career Development Services
These services are offered to clients receiving social assistance who have potential for employment. Although the services are not focused on a specific sector, displaced people in the oceans sector are eligible to receive support.

Department of Fisheries

The Department administers the Fish Processing Act pursuant to which licences are issued to fish processing plants in New Brunswick. Plans are for the Fish Processing Act to be replaced by the Seafood Processing Act, which will provide for structured management of the fisheries industry, create a more modern environment for the processing sector, support and preserve long-term stability and jobs in the industry, give more flexibility to the industry to do value-added processing by reducing red tape and level the playing field and encourage the fair trade for fish received.

The Department also publishes fact sheets on fish, seafood and marine resources as well as sectoral reviews and broader studies.

Marine Resources Development (MRD)
MRD fosters the development of the marine resources industry, including wild fish harvesting, food processing activities and delivery to market. Extension services ensure access to fisheries resources and promote responsible fishing, sustainable development and habitat and resource enhancement activities.

In conjunction with federal and provincial government partners, the Department works with industry to address challenges and opportunities in product development, marketing and technology application related to production mechanization and environmental improvements. Strategic advice and assistance is provided to seafood processing opportunities.

Registrar of Fish Processing
Under the Fish Processing Act, the Registrar is responsible for licensing all fish processing plants, defined as any place where fish are processed for sale. Processing means preparing fish for sale in any manner. There are three types of applications related to the Act: fish processing plant licences; to re-equip, modify and/ or expand a plant; and to process additional species. Applications are received and processed through the Department’s regional offices. After an application is processed, it is sent to the Registrar of Fish Processing who coordinates an application review and then delivers a decision.

Department of Intergovernmental Affairs

Through its three divisions, the Department provides a strategic and corporate approach to the management of relations with other governments, communities and organizations in North America and elsewhere.


The Division maximizes opportunities and minimizes constraints inherent in trading relations by actively engaging in the negotiation, implementation and dispute settlement aspects of domestic and international trade agreements.

Department of Justice and Consumer Affairs

The Department provides support in areas such as strategic and departmental planning, federal, provincial and territorial relations, policy development, program design, performance measurement, evaluations and program reviews, public relations and communications, and executive support to the Minister and the Deputy Minister.

Department of Natural Resources

The Department is mandated to manage all provincial Crown lands, including approximately 2.1 million hectares of tidally-influenced submerged land and overlying waters. These submerged lands are located adjacent to approximately 5,500 kilometres of coastal shoreline distributed along the Bay of Fundy, Northumberland Strait and the Bay of Chaleur.

The Department manages 30 Protected Natural Areas, including islands, coastal areas and gorges. Twenty are Class 1 sites where only scientific experiments and monitoring programs are allowed. Low impact recreation (hiking, canoeing, camping, fishing and hunting) is allowed in the Class 2 sites. The Department shares responsibility for managing and protecting wetlands with the Department of the Environment.

The Department administers the Oil and Natural Gas Act and issues licences to search off-shore.

Coastal Structures and Works on Submerged Crown land
Proposed or existing coastal structures or works, which extend below the ordinary high water mark on Crown land, require prior authorization and possibly tenure (e.g. lease, licence or easement) from the Department.

Erosion control structures are normally not permitted on submerged Crown lands below the ordinary high water mark, except, for example, in cases involving imminent danger, public safety or financial or personal hardship. Such cases require approval by means of a lease or licence.

Permanent works below the ordinary high water mark require formal approval by means of a lease. Structures or works with the potential to negatively affect the coastal environment or pedestrian passage along the Crown foreshore are normally not approved on submerged Crown lands.

Seasonal or temporary works below the ordinary high water mark such as floating docks, moorings and swimming platforms do not require approval provided they are for private, non-commercial use, not hazardous to the shore environment, reasonable in size for the intended use, and do not obstruct pedestrian passage along the Crown foreshore. Commercial or extensive structures such as marinas and multi-boat floating docks require formal approval by means of a lease. Temporary uses or works such as dredging require formal approval by means of a licence of occupation.


The Branch maintains a coastal studies program to map and monitor coastal erosion. It has developed a coastal erosion database used by governments and the private sector to plan activities such as dune restoration, beach nourishment, municipal land use planning and federal port dredging. Coastal erosion is significant in New Brunswick due to factors such as sea level rise, storm surges and sediment deficits.

The Branch also assisted in developing the Coastal Areas Protection Policy. Among other features, the policy designates a 30-metre building setback along coastal beaches, dunes and marshes to protect their ecological integrity.

Seismic Data
The Branch provides profiles of seismic surveys completed between 1948 and the present; the focus is on surveys that have yielded bedrock profiles useful for stratigraphic and /or structural interpretation. The profiles cover 2,531 kilometres onshore and 12,996 kilometres offshore.

Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour

Oceans-sector-related programs offered by institutes (other than universities) recognized by the Department are aquaculture technician, biotechnology, environmental technology, industrial mechanics, marine diesel mechanics and marine electrician.

In addition, the University of New Brunswick, the University of Moncton and Mount Allison University offer education in fields such as marine biology, marine science, marine botany, ichthyology and integrated management of coastal zones.

The Marine Macroecology and Biogeochemistry Lab and the Mount Allison Coastal Wetlands Institute are both located at Mount Allison University. The Centre for Coastal Studies and Aquaculture is located at the University of New Brunswick, while the Coastal Zone Research Institute Inc. is part of the University of Moncton.

The University of New Brunswick, Mount Allison University and the University of Moncton are members of the board of the Huntman Marine Science Centre in St. Andrews-by-the-Sea. Course subjects offered at the Centre differ from year to year but recent offerings by Mount Allison University address marine aquaculture, marine parasitology, marine developmental biology, coastal marsh plant ecology, biology of marine mammals, fisheries resource evaluation and management, ecology and behaviour of fish and marine biology. The University of New Brunswick offers a marine semester program at the centre.

New Brunswick School of Fisheries
The School teaches fishermen to work safely at sea, improve their fishing skills, increase their productivity and adapt to new fishing techniques and technology. Programs are offered to people working in seafood processing and aquaculture as well as on a request basis in New Brunswick communities. Diplomas are offered to persons wanting to work or continue working as aquaculturists, fishermen, deck officers, machine officers or fish plant workers.

Department of Public Safety


The Organization coordinates emergency preparedness and provincial emergency response operations and administers disaster financial assistance programs. The Department plans civil emergency preparedness measures with respect to matters that are not the responsibility of any other department or agency of the governments of New Brunswick or Canada.

Service New Brunswick (SNB)

SNB is a provincially owned corporation whose mission is to improve the delivery of government services to the public. Oceans-related services include geographic and land information products, property assessment and the sale of maps.

Geographic Information Infrastructure
SNB maintains a GPS-based control survey network of 142 ground stations for use by provincial departments, individuals and enterprises needing to geo-reference information. Digital topographic maps, including roads, watercourses, vegetative cover, administrative boundaries, utilities, buildings and structures, are available for the entire province.

Department of Tourism and Parks

The Department develops and promotes tourism as well as operating the province’s tourism infrastructure including provincial parks, many of which are situated on the coast or on islands.

New Brunswick Aquarium and Marine Centre In addition to its research program for aquaculture development, the Centre is a museum with a focus on the contemporary fishing industry and the gear and equipment that it requires.

Department of Transportation (DOT)

The Department is responsible for the planning and construction of provincial highways. It operates twelve ferries, including two coastal ferries, on nine routes as part of the province’s highway system. Ferry services to Grand Manan Island are provided by two privatesector companies.

DOT is currently seeking a developer/operator to design and build new ferries for Grand Manan and White Head islands. The successful proponent will operate all the province’s coastal ferries and maintain the vessels and associated wharves for 15 to 20 years.

Department of Wellness, Culture and Sport


The Unit administers provincial involvement in the recognition, commemoration and designation of historic places in New Brunswick. The Unit’s definition of built heritage includes islands, lighthouses, shipwrecks and archaeological sites.


Archaeological Services is responsible for managing the province’s archaeological heritage, including protecting, preserving and interpreting non-renewable archaeological resources. Its functions include coordination, licensing, collection management, heritage resource impact assessment, salvage, product development, research and liaison with First Nations on heritage issues. It also issues archaeological field research licences.

Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission

The Commission promotes a safe and healthy work environment to New Brunswick workers and employers and provides adjudication and administration of the legislation.

Marine Industry Enforcement
The Commission oversees the implementation and application of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, the Workers’ Compensation Act, and the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission Act. It offers education and information on health and safety matters and enforces the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The Commission provides no-fault insurance to workers and employers under theWorkers’ Compensation Act. Workers injured on the job are assisted in their rehabilitation through a variety of the Commission’s programs.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — New Brunswick

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Agriculture and Aquaculture
Agriculture Act Establishes policy that applies to all agricultural lands in the province, and encourages sustainability and environmental harmony.
Aquaculture Act Provides for site allocation and tenure administration at marine aquaculture sites and associated facilities.
Marshland Reclamation Act Defines “marshland" to mean “land lying upon the sea coast or upon the bank of a tidal river and being below the level of the highest tide." Provides for the authorization of constructing, reconstructing, reconditioning, repairing, maintaining, conducting or operating of works. “Works" include dykes, aboiteaux, breakwaters, canals, ditches, drains, roads and other structures, excavations and facilities for the reclamation, development, improvement or protection of marshland.
Business New Brunswick
Fisheries Development Act Provides financial assistance to aid and encourage the establishment or development of fisheries in the province.
Department of Community and Cultural Affairs
Municipalities Act Confirms that all wharves, piers, docks, bridges, causeways, breakwaters and other similar structures contiguous to a boundary of a municipality are included within the municipality.
Department of the Environment
Clean Environment Act Regulates the disposal or introduction of any contaminant or waste that may be harmful to the environment.
Clean Water Act Ensures that all bodies of water, flowing or standing, are protected from contaminants, alterations and disturbances of the ground within 30 metres of the banks.
Community Planning Act Provides for the adoption of regional development plans for the province’s seven planning regions and vests planning authority for land use planning matters to rural community councils. Defines “land for public purposes" to include “access to…[the] sea or…a beach or scenic area along the shore of…[the] sea.
Pesticides Control Act Ensures that bodies of water are not used for the washing of a pesticide container or an apparatus used for the mixing or application contrary to the regulations and that no person discharges into a body of water any substance used for mixing or applying a pesticide or washing a pesticide container.
Department of Family and Community Services
Family Income Security Act Provides income support based on the financial situation of the individual or household.
Department of Fisheries
Fish Processing Act Allows licensing of fish processing plants. It empowers the Department to issue licences, determine the species for which the licence is valid and inspect processing facilities. (See Seafood Processing Act, below.)
Inshore Fisheries Representation Act Defines the characteristics of inshore fisheries boats.
Seafood Processing Act The Seafood Processing Act will replace the Fish Processing Act once proclaimed. It will provide for the issuing of Primary Processing Plant LicencesLive Lobster Holding Facility LicencesSecondary Processing Plant Registration CertificatesFish Purchaser Licences and Purchasing Agent Certificates.
Department of Intergovernmental Affairs
Maritime Economic Cooperation Act Affirms that the government is to be guided by the principles of sustainable development and commits the governments of the Maritime provinces to cooperate to protect and enhance the environment and ensure the wise use of natural resources.
Department of Natural Resources
Endangered Species Act Provides protection to designated endangered species, including the leatherback turtle.
Fish and Wildlife Act Defines offences related to the possession of Atlantic salmon or any parts thereof. The Act regulates hunting and angling rights in the province.
Oil and Natural Gas Act Provides the authority to explore for and produce oil and natural gas both onshore and offshore.
Mining Act Controls the exploration and development of mineral deposits on Crown land, including any water of such lands.
Parks Act Authorizes the Minister of Natural Resources to designate a recreational trail, or any portion of a recreational trail, for the purposes of the definition provincial park. Designates authority over any marine activities within provincial park boundaries.
Protected Natural Areas Act Provides the authority to establish Protected Natural Areas so as to protect the biological diversity of fauna and flora and the relationship between such fauna and flora and the environment.
Quarriable Substances Act Controls the extraction of quarriable substances on Crown lands and on private land in shore-designated areas.
Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour
Adult Education and Training Act Concerns the establishment and operation of post-secondary non-university programs, provided according to the needs of the population within the province.
Apprenticeship and Occupational Certification Act Establishes the Apprenticeship and Occupational Certification Board which is authorized to issue diplomas of apprenticeship and certificates of qualification in designated occupations.
Degree Granting Act Authorizes educational institutions to grant degrees.
Employment Development Act Provides for employment development programs to stimulate employment through the creation of jobs, both temporary and permanent.
Fisheries Bargaining Act Establishes rules of procedure for fishermen’s and buyers’ organizations.
Department of Public Safety
Emergency Measures Act Affirms that the New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization is responsible for stimulating and coordinating emergency preparedness planning for emergencies and disasters.
Service New Brunswick
Assessment Act Defines real property for the purpose of assessment to include fish holding tanks used in the aquaculture industry and piers.
Department of Tourism and Parks
Parks Act Grants the Department authority over parks listed in Schedule A.
Department of Transportation
Highways Act Designates the responsibility for repairing and maintaining ferries, bridges and highways and provides for the establishment and regulation of provincial dumps.
Culture and Sport Secretariat
Historic Sites Protection Act Ensures the designation and protection of historic and anthropological sites.
Municipal Heritage Preservation Enables the making of municipal by-laws for the preservation and protection of lands, buildings and structures of historical or architectural significance and provides for heritage resource management and consultation and the making of heritage policies.
Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission
Workers’ Compensation Act Provides workers with protection against loss of earnings if they are injured on the job and employers with no-fault liability insurance and protection from legal action by injured workers.
Occupational Health and Safety Act Places primary responsibility for health and safety issues in the hands of people in the workplace.

Nova Scotia

Department of Economic Development

The Department leads the province’s economic development, innovation and technology support systems. In partnership with other departments and governments, with businesses and communities, the Department provides leadership to create the conditions for a productive and sustainable economy.

Nova Scotia Business Incorporated (NSBI)
NSBI is the province’s primary point of access for investors and businesses. NSBI provides loans to a maximum of $15 million to support business growth. In addition, NSBI’s equity program gives local companies the working capital and financial support to grow. NSBI also has an export development program to help Nova Scotia companies.

InNOVAcorp helps companies succeed in their early stages by promoting innovation and commercialization of new products and technologies through venture capital investment, mentoring and business incubation facilities and services.

The Waterfront Development Corporation (WDC) provides property acquisition, management and development within designated areas in Bedford, Dartmouth and Halifax. WDC also provides marketing and promotion designed to attract public use of waterfronts and coordinates and plans the waterfronts of Bedford, Dartmouth and Halifax.

The Industrial Expansion Fund (IEF) assists in the development and/or expansion of industry in Nova Scotia, including those relating to the oceans sector.

The Nova Scotia Boatbuilders Association (NSBA), Prototype Boat Loan Facility, gives NSBA members opportunity to develop new products for export as well as for the fishery and recreational markets. The program is funded by the Office of Economic Development, with the Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board providing technical and administrative services.

Other programs include:

The ExportAbility Program is designed to provide funding to ensure that Nova Scotia’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are equipped with the skills they need to become export savvy. The program supports continuing professional development in the practice of international trade.

The Go-Ahead Program (GAP) provides support to SMEs in Nova Scotia to develop export sales outside the Maritime provinces. The program helps cover the costs of follow-up market visits to prospects identified or pursued during a previous provincial government or export agency initiative, including trade missions, shows or conferences.

The Small Business Financing Program, a partnership with credit unions and the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, delivers financial assistance to establish new business, grow existing business and create employment.

The Community Economic Development Investment Funds program aims to increase the amount of local capital reinvested in Nova Scotia to 5 per cent by the end of 2010. The program is for economic development; projects must have measurable financial returns.

Emergency Management Office (EMO)

EMO is responsible for ensuring all emergency planning in the province is cooperative and consultative. The Nova Scotia Emergency Measures Act requires that all municipalities have an emergency measures organization, an emergency by-law, an emergency plan, an emergency measures coordinator, and a standing committee of members of council. The Act is particularly relevant given issues such as sea level rise and severe weather events such as Hurricane Juan.

Department of Energy


The Division promotes investment in energy-related endeavours. It provides local companies opportunities to meet potential joint-venture partners and participate in investment missions. It maximizes business opportunities for local suppliers and identifies areas of labour demand and possible skill shortages to develop strategic approaches and undertake partnerships in training projects and initiatives.


The Division develops information programs to increase public understanding of issues such as climate change, electricity, renewable energy and oil and natural gas exploration and development.


This Division develops and implements policies and programs dealing with natural gas transmission, distribution and use; electricity generation, transmission, distribution and use; refined petroleum products; and renewables. The Department of Energy, through this Division, is responsible for leading the development of policies and actions on global climate change. As well, this Division is mandated to ensure that Canadian energy policy development supports and reflects the interests of Nova Scotia. The Division is responsible for coordinating relations with other governments in areas of its responsibility. Examples include the proposed federal Clean Air Act and Clean Air Agenda, and ongoing consultations and discussions with Aboriginal peoples.


This Division is responsible for coordinating energy policies, strategies, plans and services. It gathers information on Nova Scotia and other jurisdictions’ experiences, policies and activities as well as the general business climate for energy investments and analyzes their effectiveness, implications for meeting public policy objectives and relevance to Nova Scotia’s energy sector.

The Division is mandated to work with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) and other federal departments on oceans issues. One such initiative is Eastern Scotian Shelf Integrated Management (ESSIM), a collaborative ocean planning process being led and facilitated by DFO Maritimes Region under the Oceans Act. The primary aim of the initiative is to develop and implement an Integrated Ocean Management Plan for the Eastern Scotian Shelf. Offshore oil and gas is one of the major activities to be managed in the ESSIM area; this Division takes an active role in engaging in these issues. The Division is also represented on the Provincial Oceans Network, ESSIM Stakeholder Advisory Committee, the federal provincial ESSIM Working Group, and it supports departmental participation on the Regional Committee on Ocean Management (RCOM), which provides senior-level guidance and coordination for regional ocean and coastal management activities.

The Division is also mandated to focus on regulatory innovation. It works to achieve greater regulatory efficiency and encourage increased investment and local involvement in the offshore. It works with the federal government and other provinces to renew and modernize frontier and offshore petroleum regulations with the aim of applying the principles of “goal-oriented regulation".

The regulatory innovation team at Energy has been a key player in the development of the Statement of Canadian Practice with Respect to the Mitigation of Seismic Sound in the Marine Environment. The Statement specifies baseline mitigation measures for the planning and conduct of marine seismic surveys to minimize potential impacts of seismic surveys on marine life.

The Department of Energy engages and maintains a good working relationship with stakeholders involved in ocean activities, particularly the fisheries industry as well as environmental groups, the Aboriginal community and the offshore oil and gas industry.


The Division develops policy, legislation, and regulations for the exploration and development of the province’s offshore and onshore petroleum resources, which includes administration of royalty regulations and agreements. The Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board regulates day-to-day offshore petroleum activity; however, the Division actively promotes both Nova Scotia’s onshore and offshore petroleum potential.

Department of Environment and Labour (DEL)

DEL issues certification and facility classifications to operators of wastewater treatment, collection, distribution, or water treatment facilities in Nova Scotia.

DEL issues approvals to persons who wish to use or alter a watercourse or a water resource or any natural body of water.

The Activities Designation Regulations require that an approval be obtained from the Department for any activity that would result in alteration of an existing wetland. This approval process does not apply to manmade wetlands created specifically for the purposes of wastewater or storm-water treatment. The approval process applies to alteration of salt marshes. However, other types of tidal wetlands such as lagoons, mud flats and tidal ponds are not subject to this approval process and their alteration does not require approval from DEL.

The Department relies on members of the public to serve on many of its boards. Boards with potential to affect the oceans sector are the Environmental Assessment Board and the Advisory Committee on the Protection of Special Places (ACPSP). Among other things, ACPSP conducts research on existing and possible future special places and makes recommendations concerning the administration, classification and acquisition of archaeological and historical remains and paleontological sites.

Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture (DFA)

DFA’s mission is to service, develop and manage the harvesting, processing, recreational and aquaculture segments of the Nova Scotia fishing industry for the betterment of our coastal communities and the province as a whole.


Marine Fisheries Services represents the Nova Scotia fishing industry at provincial, national and international forums. It is the provincial lead on ocean and coastal zone management and promotes the best use of marine and coastal resources and the habitat that supports commercial fisheries. It chairs the Provincial Oceans Committee, an inter-departmental network responsible for information exchange and coordination on coastal management issues. It also provides fisheries advisory services.

Coastal Resource Coordinators (CRC) act as a liaison between government, plant owners and Nova Scotia fishers. As frontline service-delivery agents, they help with development and incentive programs, help fishers in the development of under-utilized fish resources, assist with loan applications to theFisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board, transfer boats to fishers through the Federal Registry of Shipping, set up training programs for fishers through the Pictou School of Fisheries and outports, participate in local coastal management initiatives, conduct aquaculture site inspections, and conduct a housekeeping inspection each year on fishing vessels for the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Loan Board.

Innovative Technology
The Department provides technical and financial support to commercial fishers, aquaculturists and processors in coastal communities, supports development and demonstration projects as a means of introducing new and improved technology to the industry, provides engineering services to other divisions of the Department and administers a federal-provincial cooperation agreement relating to aquaculture, fishing vessels and sport fishery development.

The Department also administers the Fisheries Organization Support Act intended to strengthen fisheries organizations in the province and provide a procedure to enable accredited fisheries organizations to collect mandatory annual dues from licence holders.

Nova Scotia Boat Ramp Locations
The Nova Scotia Ramp Report is an on-line guide to ramps for launching commercial or recreational boats.

Marine Plant Leasing Services administers leases for commercial harvesting of rockweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) on Crown lands. The rockweed resource is co-managed by DFA and DFODFO is responsible for resource assessment and licensing of harvesters. DFA Marine Plant Services is responsible for administering leases and regulating the harvest, and the Fisheries Licensing and Investigations Division is responsible for monitoring and enforcement.


NSFA is responsible for inland fisheries including inland sport-fish management, sport fishing development and promotion, inland conservation, fish habitat conservation and restoration and lake and river stocking.


The Division provides on-line aquaculture statistics on sales and employment, aquaculture species sheets and maps of aquaculture sites in Nova Scotia. In addition, the Division issues and approves aquaculture leases and licences. The Division also offers extension services.

Options for Aquaculture Training in Nova Scotia are one-year certificates offered at the Nova Scotia Community College and an undergraduate program at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College.

The Fisheries and Aquaculture Development Program provides assistance to support new or improved harvesting and processing technology, aquaculture development and new community-based infrastructure. Technology transfers involving development, research projects or travel missions are eligible.

The Nova Scotia Aquaculture Environmental Monitoring Program (EMP) was implemented in 2003 due to industry expansion, increased public concern and DFA’s commitment to environmental sustainability. EMP focuses on the potential effect of aquaculture on bottom sediment rather than on the water column.

Aquaculture Veterinary Services provides both laboratory and mobile veterinary services for aquaculturists around the province to promote fish and shellfish health. Aquaculture Veterinary Services works closely with the Nova Scotia Agricultural College and the Atlantic Veterinary College at the University of Prince Edward Island.

The Nova Scotia Aquaculture Development Committee is an initiative of NSFA and the Nova Scotia Economic Renewal Agency. Its mandate is to facilitate a dedicated, coordinated and proactive approach to aquaculture development in N.S. and to advise the NSFA on major aquaculture issues. Its purpose is promoting and developing aquaculture in Nova Scotia. Committee members represent a mix of government departments and agencies that have regulatory, development, research and potential funding involvements regarding aquaculture.

Regional Aquaculture Development Advisory Committees (RADACS) are composed of people who represent the interests of an area and may include fishers, aquaculturists, recreational boaters, waterfront landowners, business operators and local politicians — in short, people and groups affected by the installation of an aquaculture site. Criteria used by the committees to review applications include current uses of the water body, possible user conflicts, the number of leases already in the water body and site location suitability.

Fisheries Licensing and Investigations Division
The Fisheries Licensing and Investigations Division is responsible for licensing fish buyers and fish processors, enforcing legislation and regulations, implementing policy and managing resources. Staff assist with fisheries resource issues specifically related to processing, buying, marine plants and aquaculture by providing technical and enforcement support.
Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board
The Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board provides aquaculture loans to develop and sustain aquaculture for finfish, shellfish and sea plants. Financing is available for salmonoid seed stock, shellfish seed/ spat, collection materials, grow-out equipment and materials and rafts, buoys, floatation devices, anchors, nets, cages for finfish grow-out, small boats, outboard motors and onboard gear-handling devices.

The Board also provides loans to fishers, associations of fishers or companies for purchasing or building fishing vessels, purchasing and installing engines, equipment and/or electronics and technical modifications.

Department of Agriculture

The Industry Development and Business Services Branch provides economic development and business services to the Nova Scotia fisheries sector. Planning and development officers work closely with government and industry partners in market-chain enhancement, opportunity investment and business development to enhance the international competitiveness of the sector.

The Agriculture Services Branch – Resource Stewardship Division administers the Agricultural Marshland Conservation Act and is responsible for maintenance work on a system of tidal dykes across Nova Scotia. Approximately 17,400 hectares of land are protected by 240 kilometres of dykes. Staff also provide advice to dyke landowners on improving drainage systems on dyke lands.

Department of Justice

The Department provides legal services to all departments with activities in the oceans sector. It is involved in all constitutional and jurisdictional questions arising out of marine matters and conducts all civil proceedings by or against the Crown before courts and tribunals.

Department of Natural Resources (DNR)

DNR is responsible for the province’s Game Sanctuaries and Wildlife Management Areas, some of which are situated on islands and coastal areas.

The Wetlands and Coastal Habitats program — in partnership with other governmental and non governmental agencies, industry and the public — works for the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands and coastal habitats and associated wildlife resources, including dyke lands in the upper Bay of Fundy of Nova Scotia.

DNR also administers the Nova Scotia Habitat Conservation Fund, which funds programs for the protection and enhancement of wildlife habitats, including coastal areas. In addition, DNR administers submerged lands along the Province’s 7,600 kilometres of coastline.

DNR issues mooring wharf repair, and wharf, skid way and boat ramp permits for work on submerged Crown land (excluding bodies of fresh water). Other permits issued by DNR include Protected Beach Vehicle Permits (usually restricted to commercial operations) and Beach Aggregate Removal Permits for commercial or personal use (limited to ten cubic yards).

DNR also administers the Crown Lands Deed or Grant: Water Lot Grant (excluding areas of fresh water) for anyone who needs ownership of submerged land in coastal waters to permit the construction of large wharves, causeways, infills or breakwaters. Proponents of bank protection projects requiring placement of material or operation of machinery below the ordinary high water mark are required to obtain a permit from DNR.

Parks and Recreation Division
Many of Nova Scotia’s provincial parks are situated on the coast. The Parks and Recreation Division administers the Parks Act and the Trails Act. This includes planning parks, trails and outdoor recreational opportunities and inventorying and evaluating outdoor recreational and heritage resources. The Division provides expertise for beach protection and related coastal zone management, evaluates parkland acquisition options and negotiates private land stewardship agreements. The Division also undertakes other activities related to parks and recreation.

Department of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations


This Division assists municipalities in complying with the legislative requirements of the Municipal Government Act (MGA), which sets out the roles and responsibilities of municipal jurisdictions within the Province of Nova Scotia. All municipal planning strategies, landuse by-laws and subdivision by-laws must conform to requirements of the MGA.

The Division also advises on and prepares policy related to municipal matters for the government and on behalf of the government for municipalities. The Division administers most of the grant and other financial support programs offered to municipalities, including the Canada/Nova Scotia Infrastructure Program, the Canada/Nova Scotia Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund and the federal transfer of gas tax revenues to municipalities.

Geographic Information Services develops, maintains and distributes the province’s corporate, primary geographic information including the Nova Scotia Topographic Database, the Nova Scotia Coordinate Reference System, the Nova Scotia Property Records Database and the Nova Scotia Aerial Photography Archive. Geomatics products, including maps, databases and aerial photographs, are available at the Nova Scotia Geomatics Centre and at Land Registration Offices offering map library services.

GeoNOVA creates, maintains and distributes geographic information. It encourages the creation of corporate geographic information resources collected, maintained and distributed to accepted standards and shared amongst all users within the province to support decision-making and to reduce duplication of effort.

Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage

Nova Scotia’s tourism industry is heavily reliant on the province’s vast coastline (over 7,600 kilometres) and related coastal and marine tourism activity that is affected by the ocean sector. Although not directly involved in the oceans sector from a legislative point of view, the Department’s Tourism Division provides communities with development and planning support, including financial assistance and guidance, and assistance in developing Nova Scotia’s tourism products, destinations and attractions. Coastal tourism, including ocean-based marine tourism, is a key focus of this work. The Division fosters the development and promotion of coastal tourism products including whale and other wildlife watching, coastal hiking, sea kayaking, sailing, etc. The Division owns and oversees the operation of three provincially owned resorts located in coastal areas (Keltic Lodge Resort and Spa, Digby Pines Golf Resort and Liscombe Lodge Resort). The Department is mandated under the Peggy’s Cove Commission Act to legally protect the coastal tourism community of Peggy’s Cove as a preservation area.

From a marketing perspective, the Division is mandated to promote Nova Scotia as a tourism destination. This work includes research, advertising, internet marketing, and producing and/or distributing travel guides, other literature, highway maps, and festival and event publications. Nova Scotia’s tourism brand is closely associated with the ocean. The Division partners with cruise industry stakeholders including the Atlantic Canada Cruise Association (an association of cruise ports and federal and provincial governments) to develop and promote cruise visitation to Nova Scotia.

The Heritage Division of the Department provides a variety of heritage programs and services including operating the Nova Scotia Museum system of 27 provincial museums and maintaining the provincial collection of artifacts and specimens. It is responsible for providing heritage services mandated by several pieces of legislation. The Special Places Protection Act (1989) provides the Heritage Division with a mandate for protecting important archaeological, historical and paleontological sites and remains, including those covered by water. It allows the government to designate outstanding heritage sites as protected sites and ensures that quality research is carried out through its heritage research permit system.

Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal (TIR)

TIR develops operational policy for highway construction and maintenance, sets provincial highway standards and coordinates many provincial activities. Activities specific to the oceans sector are the operation of seven ferries that link the provincial highway system: four cable ferries (LaHave, Country Harbour, Little Narrows, and Englishtown) and three ocean-going ferries (Tancook Island, Petit Passage, and Grand Passage). Other activities include coastal tourism operations (Digby Pines, Keltic Lodge, Liscombe Lodge), wastewater treatment (Boat Harbour Facility), industrial parks/port facilities at Point Tupper, Sheet Harbour, Woodside and Shelburne, the operations of ferries and railways and emergency radio/communication services.

Under the Public Highways Act, construction of property access roads to public highways (and buildings within 100 metres of the highway centreline) requires the Minister’s Consent for Building and Access to Property and a Permit for Breaking of Soil of Highways. In addition to checks on road safety (e.g. sight distance) and drainage, these approvals also require landowner attention to environmental protection in accordance with regulations of other government departments such as erosion and sediment control provisions of NSDEL and NSDNR and impacts on watercourses, wetlands and coastal lands/waters.

TIR’s Environmental Services Section acts on behalf of government with regard to the provincial road system, highway operations and maintenance, development of new properties, and the decommissioning of old buildings/ sites. Oceans-sector-related projects include fish habitat, wetland and salt marsh restoration, environmental impact assessments, environmental protection planning, environmental policy and program development, contractor training for erosion and sediment control, and the prevention, assessment and cleanup of contaminated sites.

Intergovernmental Affairs (IGA)

IGA is the central coordinating agency for the province’s relations with federal, provincial and territorial governments as well as with other governments. IGA is the lead on inter-governmental issues related to coastal and ocean management. It provides leadership in constitutional problem-solving and policy, focusing particularly on matters affecting sovereignty and natural resource entitlement within the province’s offshore boundary. Provincial initiatives involving offshore or coastal activity, such as the proposed Donkin mine, increase the need for a coordinated constitutional approach.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Nova Scotia

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Education
Apprenticeship and Trades Qualifications Act Provides for apprenticeship and trades qualifications.
Emergency Management Office
Emergency Measures Act Provides for a prompt and coordinated response to a state of emergency.
Department of Economic Development
Halifax-Dartmouth Port Development Commission Act Provides for a commission to promote the use of the Port of Halifax and its facilities.
Department of Agriculture
Agricultural Marshland Conservation Act Authorizes the Minister to construct works to develop marshland for agricultural purposes. “Marshland" means land that is subject to periodic tidal flooding and designated by the Minister as marshland.
Department of Energy
Canada-NS Offshore Petroleum Resources Accord Implementation Act Establishes a board to make recommendations respecting petroleum-related activity in the offshore area.
Petroleum Resources Act Vests all petroleum located in or under Nova Scotia lands to the Province. The Act covers Sable Island, the seabed and subsoil off the shore of Nova Scotia’s land mass, the seabed and subsoil of the Continental shelf and slope and the seabed and subsoil seaward from the Continental shelf and slope to the limit of exploitability.
Offshore Petroleum Royalty Act Provides for the payment of royalties in respect of petroleum produced from lands in the offshore area.
Petroleum Resources Removal Permit Act Provides for permits for the removal of petroleum resources from the province.
Pipeline Act Applies to all pipelines on or under Nova Scotia lands.
Energy Resources Conservation Act Regulates the conservation of and prevents the waste of energy resources and ensures efficient practices in the exploration for and development, production, transmission and transportation of energy resources. Applies to all Nova Scotia lands.
Department of Environment and Labour
Wilderness Areas Protection Act Provides for the protection of wilderness areas.
Labour Standards Code Provides for a Labour Standards Code.
Occupational Health and Safety Act Provides for the sharing of responsibility for the health and safety of persons in the workplace.
Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture
Fisheries Organization Support Act Strengthens fisheries organizations in the province and provides a procedure to enable accredited fisheries organizations to collect mandatory annual dues from licence holders.
Fisheries and Coastal Resources Act Encourages, promotes and implements programs that will sustain and improve the fishery, including aquaculture.
Department of Natural Resources
Beaches Act Provides for the protection of beaches and associated dune systems as significant and sensitive environmental and recreational resources; provides for the regulation and enforcement of the full range of land-use activities on beaches, including aggregate removal; controls recreational and other uses of beaches that may cause undesirable impacts.
Conservation Easements Act Enable owners of submerged lands to enter into conservation easements with respect to them or with respect to oceanfront land.
Crown Lands Act Provides for the most effective utilization of Crown lands. The Act is also used for shoreline reclamation and use.
Endangered Species Act Provides for the protection, designation, recovery and other relevant aspects of conservation of species at risk in the province, including habitat protection.
Mineral Resources Act Supports and promotes responsible mineral resource management consistent with sustainable development.
Off-highway Vehicles Act Prohibits operation of off-highway vehicles in or on a wetland, swamp or marsh, a watercourse as defined by the Environment Act, a sand dune, a coastal or highland barren; or a sensitive area as designated by or defined in the regulations.
Provincial Parks Act Provides for the establishment of provincial parks.
Trails Act Governs trails on lands and over watercourses.
Wildlife Act Provides for management of wild species, including fish, with respect to licensing, enforcement and wildlife habitat. Where wildlife management involves fish, the primary responsibility is that of the Minister of Fisheries.
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations
Wharves and Public Landings Act Gives council of every municipality control of all public wharves and public landings within the municipality and under the jurisdiction and legislative control of the Legislature.
Tourism, Culture and Heritage
Special Places Protection Act (1989) Provides the Heritage Division with a mandate for protecting important archaeological, historical and paleontological sites and remains, including those covered by water. It allows the government to designate outstanding heritage sites as protected sites.
Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal
Canso Causeway Act Provides for the construction and maintenance of a causeway across the Strait of Canso.
Maritime Economic Cooperation Act Sets out the commitment by the governments of the Maritime provinces for closer economic cooperation.
Public Highways Act, Ferries Act and Railways Act Provides for the construction, operations and maintenance of provincial roads and the operations of all ferries and railways within Nova Scotia.
Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge Commission Act Provides for a commission to maintain and operate the bridges across Halifax Harbour known as the Angus L. Macdonald Bridge and the A. Murray MacKay Bridge, and the approaches and other real and personal property relating to the bridges.

Prince Edward Island

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture

The Department advocates in the area of marine fisheries management and supports development of the marine fishery and aquaculture sectors. It supports the processing sector and professional, technical and fish inspection services. The Department participates in species advisory committees with the federal government and industry members. It carries out biological research in support of major fish species and the development of emerging species; it provides advice, assistance and information to the aquaculture industry. The Department delivers technical and biological services to the shellfish and finfish sectors as well as financial programs.

In addition, it advises and assists clients in maintaining fish quality and producing quality seafood products, conducts inspections and enforces regulations under the PEI Fish Inspection Act and the PEIFisheries Act and issues fish processing (primary, secondary, lobster cook room, ground fish), fish buying and fish peddling licences.

The Department is responsible for compiling and analysing statistics on the fishing industry, including landings and values, production, imports and exports and other related information.

Finally, the Department is responsible for maintaining shellfish launching sites.

Fisheries and Aquaculture Division
The Division provides programs and services to the marine fisheries and aquaculture sectors in order to fulfil its mandate and to achieve its goals of providing quality advice, assistance and information to clients.

The division acts as an advocate for the fishing industry and takes part in species advisory committees with the industry and the federal government. The Division carries out biological research in support of major fish species such as lobster, as well as developmental or emerging species; it offers programs to support new technology in the fishery and assists the seafood-processing sector with programs to enhance value-added processing of seafood. The Division also promotes fish quality through the administration of the Prince Edward Island Fish Inspection Act and the Prince Edward Island Fisheries Act, which includes responsibility for licensing, and inspection of all fish-buying stations and fish processing facilities.

The Division provides programming to the aquaculture sector to support the growth and sustainability of aquaculture businesses. Assistance is provided to encourage new technology in aquaculture, and research is carried out on species with potential for culture.

Aquaculture Environmental Practices Program
The program provides incentives for aquaculture operators, groups of operators, processors or industry organizations to adopt procedures, practices or equipment that enhance aquaculture’s environmental performance. It assists the sector in managing its operations in an environmentally sustainable manner while ensuring economic viability and maximum product quality.
Aquaculture Technology Program
The program provides incentives for aquaculture operations to assess newly approved species, to improve the environmental acceptability of aquaculture and to develop or adopt new techniques or technologies to expand production and increase earnings through more efficient production.
Aquaculture and Fisheries Research Initiative
The initiative provides industry associations, private businesses, public institutions and/or individual fishers, aquaculturists and processors with increased access to applied and developmental research to address priorities and opportunities. The initiative is aimed at:
  • stimulating the conduct of scientifically valid shortterm applied and developmental research related to the aquaculture sector, to the commercial fishery and to fish processing
  • enhancing the knowledge-based economy by promoting the creation of expertise that will be available to the industry
  • building and strengthening partnerships among research agencies and the private sector
  • focusing resources on aquaculture and fisheriesrelated research and development capabilities
Services Section
The section coordinates and pays for the removal and disposal of dead marine mammals (seals, dolphins and whales) and large fish (sharks and tuna) that wash up or strand and die on Island beaches.
Oyster Larvae Monitoring Program
The program monitors for oyster larvae spatfall and reports on the concentration and size of larvae present in primary oyster seed collection areas.
Mussel Monitoring Program
The program provides mussel spatfall prediction, mussel meat yield analysis, water temperature evaluation, the numbers of potentially toxic algae species and the monitoring of predators and fouling organisms to cultured mussel growers and processors. It provides mussel-processing plants with information that assists processors in providing quality products.
Lobster Resource Monitoring Program
Data collected through at-sea sampling by technicians and volunteer fishers gathering daily data from special and designated traps is used to maintain a profile of the lobster resource caught in Island waters.
Quality Management Project
The project assists small and medium-sized seafood processors enhance their quality systems to meet the requirements of the federal Fish Inspection Regulations. The project is an effort of the Prince Edward Island Seafood Processors Association with support from the Department.

Department of Community and Cultural Affairs

The Department administers the Subdivision and Development Regulations that regulate building setbacks, phased development and buffer areas in coastal regions as well as development of offshore islands.

The Department also administers the Canada-Prince Edward Island Municipal Infrastructure Fund. The fund’s priority is green municipal infrastructure such as water and wastewater systems and water management that protect and/or enhance the quality of the environment. A secondary focus allows other local infrastructure, including transportation, cultural and recreation, tourism and rural/remote connectivity to benefit as well.


EMO is responsible for the provincial emergency management program. Through the provisions of theEmergency Measures Act, it provides infrastructure for planning, training and advisory services for provincial and local government authorities and private industry. It participates when emergencies or disasters develop beyond the capacity of local government and administers assistance programs following emergencies and disasters.

Department of Development and Technology

The Department works with partners to facilitate rural economic development. It manages and delivers programs and services in support of small business, entrepreneurship and employment and community economic development. It also participates in related departmental policy and planning initiatives.


Food Development
The food industry in PEI is the most important contributor to the provincial economy. The PEIgovernment through its lead business development agency, PEI Business Development, has targeted the food industry for further growth and development. The PEI Business Development funds diversified manufacturing industry in the province.

A number of programs are available to selected secondary food processors:

The Web Presence Program provides a non-repayable contribution to help businesses establish a presence on the Internet. Eligible applicants include businesses and industry associations that currently do not have a Web presence and wish to undertake activities that will lead to an effective presence on the Web.

The Information Technology Planning Program assists new and existing small businesses to acquire the technical advisory support and guidance required to assess the appropriate information technologies for their enterprises.

The Information Technology Implementation Program assists new and existing export-oriented businesses to implement information technology solutions and strategies that will increase productivity, profitability and competitiveness.

The Professional Service Assistance Program provides a non-repayable contribution to small business owners requiring professional advisory support. The intent of the Professional Service Assistance Program is to share the cost of services of an outside professional to finalize the business/marketing plan and assemble the information in a clear and professional format.

The Capital Acquisition Program provides financial assistance to acquire infrastructure. Eligible participants for this program are manufacturers, processors and providers of exportable services. Applicants must be sole proprietorships, partnerships, cooperatives or limited liability companies with well-developed business and marketing plans.

The Entrepreneur Loan Program will guarantee a loan up to a maximum of $50,000 to invest in eligible new and expanding businesses.

The Quality Improvement Support Program provides financial assistance to acquire professional expertise to provide quality assurance documentation, auditing, registration and certification leading to the creation or enhancement of a quality education program for management and employees.

The Productivity Improvement Program provides financial assistance to acquire professional expertise in the area of productivity improvement. Professionals will work with local companies to provide in-house personnel with productivity knowledge and training.

The Rental Incentive Program provides financial assistance to businesses for leasing incremental space in any community in Prince Edward Island for the establishment or expansion of a business in eligible sectors.

The Equity Investors Incentive Program helps businesses attract private sector investment by providing a nonrepayable incentive to investors.

The Export Development Program provides financial assistance to export-ready companies seeking to develop foreign market opportunities. PEI Business Development organizes and executes a series of trade missions each year to geographic areas identified by industry.

The Progressive Tax Rebate Program provides a suite of measures to counter specific structural impediments in the economy. The four individual tax rebates promote the development of intellectual property and the production of innovative products and services for export to the world, assist firms to increase productivity and competitiveness, encourage Islanders to invest in Island companies, and help attract new expertise to accelerate the Island’s participation in emerging global opportunities.

In addition to the above programs, PEI Business Development and/or the government of Prince Edward Island provide financial assistance to companies engaged in processing mussels, oysters or clams. Island oyster and mussel processors may also receive assistance for marketing efforts (trade shows, market investigations and advertising) that extend beyond the geographic triangle area of Newfoundland, Toronto and Miami and for generic research and promotional material (brochures, posters, tapes, CDs).

PEI Business Development may provide financial assistance to seafood industry associations to be used solely for the benefit of all industry members, provided such financial assistance is used by the industry association and not passed through the association to individual members of the association.

Companies in the seafood industry may receive funding from federal Human Resources and Social Development programs that are co-managed by PEI.

The Prince Edward Island Food Technology Centre provides services to companies in the seafood industry on a fee-for-services basis.

PEI Business Development may provide financial assistance to companies in the seafood industry for the purpose of developing new products and new domestic and export markets.

Companies engaged in secondary processing new products using a minimal amount (25 per cent) of lobster, ground fish, rock crab, spider crab, snow crab or herring and mackerel as a primary ingredient may qualify for financial assistance for activities directly related to processing. PEI Business Development does not otherwise provide financial assistance, beyond existing outstanding commitments, to companies engaged in the acquisition or processing of the above species.

The government of Prince Edward Island also issues lobster cook room licences, as defined in theFisheries Act Regulations.


Prince Edward Island is developing world-class strengths and capacity in several areas that provide a base for the development of bioscience products and processes.


Assistance is available in the research, development and commercialization of bioactives sourced from marine and terrestrial plants.


PEI Business Development has identified the bioscience industry as a key sector in future economic growth. Eligible companies will receive a tax holiday for up to ten years through rebates of provincial corporate income taxes.

Department of Environment, Energy and Forestry

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)
The province has an EIA process for projects with potential to harm the environment. The province cooperates with the federal government to ensure thorough assessments. The Charlottetown Marine Terminal Repair and Expansion and New Marina Development project is currently under review.
Natural Areas
The Natural Areas Protection Act protects ecologically significant sites, including sand dunes, marshes, rivers, ponds, bogs, forests, offshore islands, cliffs and marine areas. Some areas are publicly owned or held for the people of PEI by the Island Nature Trust; others are held privately.

There are 17 Wildlife Management Areas on the Island, ten of which are located on publicly owned lands. These lands are protected under the Wildlife Conservation Act and are maintained for the protection, management and conservation of wildlife and its habitat. Some of these areas are also designated as Natural Areas.

Beach Sand Extraction
Sand from beaches is used primarily in the manufacture of concrete. It is extracted from specified beaches, generally in the inter-tidal zone and, occasionally, in the near-shore sub-tidal zone. The Department issues permits and enforces regulations for this activity. A regular sand removal permit is required for this activity. A special sand removal permit is required when sand is to be extracted for other than the manufacturing of concrete or domestic purposes.
Operation of a Motor Vehicle on a Beach or Sand Dune
The Environmental Protection Act prohibits the operation of motor vehicles on beaches or sand dunes. Permission may be given when there are valid reasons for this activity.
Watercourse and Wetland Alterations Permit Program
The program issues permits for temporary or permanent changes made within ten metres of any watercourse or wetland boundary. Approval must be granted prior to initiation of the work. Examples of projects are dredging and the repair or construction of wharves, breakwaters and slipways.
PEI Small Marsh Program
The program aims to restore approximately 20 wetlands per year, ranging from one to ten acres in size. Program sponsors do the work at no cost to participating landowners, who must agree to maintain the restored wetland for 25 years.
Fisheries Organization Support Program
The program provides funding assistance to recognized fisheries organizations.
Targeted Watershed Monitoring
Monitoring is usually done to address a specific water quality problem such as the presence of eutrophic conditions in estuaries. In most cases both estuarine and freshwater locations are studied.
PEI Estuary Survey
Three locations in each of 21 estuaries or bays are sampled annually to obtain long-term information on the status of the Island’s estuaries.
Benthic Invertebrate Monitoring
The Department is assessing benthic invertebrate monitoring for the purpose of assessing water quality. Sites have been surveyed in the Mill, Dunk, Wilmot, Clyde, West, Bear and Morell rivers. It is expected that this work will become part of the Canada/PEI Water Quality Agreement.
Bacterial Sampling
In cooperation with Environment Canada, the Department undertakes bacterial sampling approximately five times per year at 700 sites located in shellfish growing areas. Environment Canada uses the data to classify shellfish growing areas.

Department of Tourism


The Branch manages provincial parks, most of which are located on the coast.

Department of Transportation and Public Works


The Division provides environmental services for projects related to both public works and transportation. It is also responsible for provincial lands (rail lands/public roads).


The Division is responsible for the assessment and analysis of the province’s long-term transportation requirements as well as the planning and implementation of major projects. It is also responsible for the planning, design and construction associated with building construction projects, including major repair and renovation.

Provincial Treasury


The Lending Agency provides term financing and operating lines of credit to applicants in the commercial fishery and/or aquaculture industry. Areas of focus include projects that have potential commercial viability for under-exploited species of finfish, shellfish and sea plants. Capital loans are provided for capital assets, such as marine vessels, engines, equipment, aquaculture leases, buildings and other industry-related tangible and intangible assets. Operating lines of credit may be provided for operating expenses, such as inventory purchases and cash flow requirements, for the day-to-day operating costs of the enterprise.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Prince Edward Island

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture
Fish Inspection Act Authorizes the implementation of regulations to ensure seafood is purchased, processed and marketed under sanitary conditions and sets compulsory standards for facilities used in these activities.
Fisheries Act Authorizes the regulation and enhancement of the fishery and implementation of programs to sustain and improve the fishery including purchasing, harvesting, transport, processing, marketing, education, development, fish inspection and fish quality.
Certified Fisheries Organizations Support Act Provides a means of funding certified fisheries organizations.
Department of Community and Cultural Affairs
Planning Act Prohibits the subdivision of a parcel of land, the construction or location of a building or development on or within 60 feet of a sand dune or wildlife habitat upon and within the main island as well as any offshore island.
Lands Protection Act Requires permission be granted by the Lieutenant Governor in Council in order to acquire more than 165 feet of shore frontage.
Emergency Measures Act Establishes the Emergency Measures Organization, which may produce a provincial emergency measures plan. Defines “disaster" to include any real or anticipated occurrence such as a flood.
Heritage Places Protection Act Provides for the protection of heritage places.
Archaeological Sites Protection Act Provides for the protection of archaeological sites.
Development and Technology
Area Industrial Commission Act Area Industrial Commission Act
Prince Edward Island Science and Technology Corporation Act Provides for the establishment of a corporation to promote science and technology capability of PEI’s business enterprises.
Prince Edward Island Business Development Act Provides for leadership in the creation, implementation and support of the government’s business development strategy; provides for capital assistance, other forms of financing and advice, information, infrastructure and services to Island business.
Maritime Economic Cooperation Act Provides for closer economic cooperation among the Maritime provinces with the objective of achieving economic self-reliance for the Maritime Provinces.
Apprenticeship and Trades Qualification Act Provides for the designation of trades as appropriate for apprenticeship training and certification.
University Act Provides for the establishment of universities.
Private Training Schools Act Provides for private training schools or places in which occupational career training instruction in any occupation is offered or provided, including any course of study whether by correspondence, home study or otherwise.
Department of Environment, Energy and Forestry
Wildlife Conservation Act Authorizes the Minister to issue fishing licences and obligates the Minister to provide to the Lieutenant Governor a report that includes an inventory of wildlife habitat, (including wetland, sand dune and riverine habitat) and an assessment of endangered and threatened species and species of special concern.
Environmental Protection Act Sewage Disposal Systems Regulations apply to the installation, construction, reconstruction or modification of sewage disposal systems. Installation or construction of a sewage disposal system is not permitted on a lot or existing parcel of land closer to the beach than the distance determined by multiplying the erosion rate for that shoreline by 60, or 23 metres (75 feet), whichever is greater.
Natural Areas Protection Act Provides for the protection of natural areas, defined as parcels of land that contain natural ecosystems or constitute the habitat of rare, endangered or uncommon plant or animal species; contain unusual botanical, zoological, geological, morphological or paleontological features; exhibit exceptional and diversified scenery; provide haven for seasonal concentrations of birds and animals; or provide opportunities for scientific and educational programs in aspects of the natural environment.
Mineral Resources Act Authorizes regulations respecting the disposal of tailings, slimes, waste products, or any noxious or deleterious substances upon any lands or into any waters. Defines lands to include lands covered by water.
Oil and Natural Gas Act Vests all oil and gas within and under provincial lands — including the seabed and subsoil off the shore of the land mass to the limits of Prince Edward Island sovereignty and to such limits — to the province.
Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission
Water and Sewerage Act Authorizes the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission to issue permits for the construction, alteration or extension of any water or sewerage system.
Department of Tourism
Recreation Development Act Promotes and encourages development of recreation facilities and recreation services, including provincial parks. Permits areas of land under tidal waters or adjacent to such land to be designated as protected beaches. These may include the land extending seaward from mean high water mark and such land adjacent thereto whether or not covered with water as may be necessary to afford adequate protection.
Trails Act Provides for the establishment and operation of recreational trails, including those adjacent to the shore, on Crown lands.
Department of Transportation and Public Works
Public Works Act Provides for the general supervision and control of all public works, (including the care and management, repairs, improvements, extensions, additions) and all work done and moneys expended by the province in making or repairing the same.
Occupational Health and Safety Act Secures workers and self-employed persons from risks to their safety, health and physical well-being arising out of, or in connection with, activities in their workplaces.

Newfoundland and Labrador

Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture

The Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture is the lead authority for developing a provincial coastal and ocean management strategy and policy framework. It is responsible for networking with other provincial departments and for liaising with other levels of government on coastal and ocean initiatives.

The Department’s core business lines are fisheries and aquaculture development, licensing fish processing operations, inspection/compliance/regulatory enforcement for the fishing and aquaculture industries, and policy development and planning. Its vision is sustainable fishing and aquaculture industries that are achieving their optimum contribution to the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Department represents the province on a number of fisheries advisory committees with industry and the federal government. The Department also collects statistics on fisheries and aquaculture, including exports, landings and landed values, and aquaculture production and value. The Department conducts market research and maintains an overview of current market conditions for major species. It supports the fish price negotiations process by providing marketing information to fishers and fish processor’s representatives.


Marine Services Centre/Facilities Program
The program provides for the administration, leasing, maintenance and divestiture of provincially-owned fish handling and support facilities.
The Fisheries Technology and New Opportunities Program
The program provides support for harvesting, processing and marketing initiatives, in order to diversify and increase the overall viability of the provincial seafood industry. This program helps ensure that the fishing industry becomes more innovative and competitive, while building a safer and more stable foundation for the industry. The objective of this program is to develop the Newfoundland and Labrador seafood industry as a continuing major economic contributor to the provincial economy.

The focus of the Fisheries Technology and New Opportunities Program is research and development work in the harvesting and processing sectors with emphasis on more efficient use of traditional species, better use of under-used species and enhanced value-realization of all fisheries resources. Emphasis will also be placed on recovery of raw material wastage and reduced discarding of fishery by-products. Market research, development and promotion will be undertaken in support of these various initiatives.

Market Research and Market Intelligence
This service provides research, collection and distribution of market information by maintaining an overview of current market conditions for all major species. It also identifies market opportunities for fisheries, aquaculture and seal products.

Once this information is known, existing programs can assist an industry partner to develop the products and the marketing approach to exploit those opportunities. A number of programs and initiatives currently exist to assist industry to develop new packaging designs, product forms and test marketing.

Trade Show Development Program
The program provides coordination and participation with industry in trade shows to promote a variety of seafood products.
Fish Processing Licensing Board
The Board issues fish processing licences. The policy is to provide the conditions for a stable and competitive processing sector to exist with minimal public support, promote employment levels that provide adequate incomes, promote cooperation in the industry that enhances product quality and optimizes total returns from processing available resources, and seek a regional balance of resource availability and processing capacity so that viable fish processing activities contribute positively to rural economic conditions.
Licensing Services
Licences are issued to fish buyers and processors. The service is also responsible for the formulation and implementation of legislation governing the marketing of fish in the province.
Quality Program
This program promotes proper ways to handle and store fish prior to processing to ensure top quality. It also delivers workshops and seminars to industry stakeholders on ways to improve quality.
Compliance and Inspection Services
The management and administration of the compliance and enforcement programs for fish processing is delivered through headquarters and regional and district offices.


Inspection Program
Fisheries Branch staff conduct inspections to assess whether aquaculture facilities are in compliance with the terms and conditions of their aquaculture licence, the Aquaculture Act and the Regulations.

The Code of Containment is a management strategy with the primary objective or minimizing escapes of farmed salmon. It was developed by the Department, the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) and industry stakeholders as well as by insurance companies and netting and cage manufacturers. The Department inspects all net, cage and surface mooring components bi-annually. In addition, there are periodic audits of cage systems including net strength testing. The Code of Containment is a condition of the finfish aquaculture licence.

Aquaculture Geographic Information System (AquaGIS)
AquaGIS provides information for aquaculturists and other waterway users and shows locations of all licensed aquaculture sites in the province, along with latitude and longitude.
Fish Health/Veterinary Services
These services are provided to finfish and shellfish growers to address any fish health issues that may hinder the development of a particular sector. A new fish health facility is being designed with construction to begin in 2009. This facility will house all Aquaculture Branch staff and include state of the art fish health facilities. The facility will complement lab facilities in St. John’s and Grand Falls-Windsor.
Aquaculture Funding Program
The aquaculture funding program is being revised to continue three funding programs that were previously administered by the Aquaculture Branch (the Aquaculture Innovation Program, the Human Resources Development Program and the Market Intelligence Assistance Program). The details of the new program have not been finalized.
Aquaculture Working Capital Loan Guarantee Program
The program improves access to financing from traditional financial institutions through the provision of government loan guarantees. Existing or new companies that are financially and technically sound have a greater chance of success by ensuring that sufficient financing is available. The program is available to companies that can demonstrate strength in all aspects of their business from technical and marketing to management capabilities. A strong business plan for growth is also critical.
Aquaculture Capital Investment Program
The program assists in increasing production of commercial aquaculture products in the province, both from hatcheries and marine sites. It provides a minimum investment to projects of $250,000 for finfish operations and $100,000 for shellfish to match an audited private sector cash investment.

Department of Environment and Conservation

The Department of Environment and Conservation is responsible for the protection and enhancement of the environment, management of the province’s wildlife, inland fish, water, parks and protected areas, and Crown land resources. The Department has a strong interest in coastal and ocean management, including environmental assessment, marine oil spills and debris, impacts of climate change on the ocean and coastal areas, coastal zone planning and development, provincial parks and protected areas in coastal areas, protection of marine areas and marine biodiversity, marine pollution from land-based sources, alien invasive species and the introduction and transfer of aquatic organisms.

The Department participates in coastal and ocean committees with the federal government, other provincial governments and stakeholders to protect and manage coastal and ocean resources, such as:

  • Regional Oversight Committee for Ocean Management (ROC)
  • Canada/Newfoundland and Labrador Committee on Ocean Management (CNLCOM)
  • Large Ocean Management Area (LOMA) committees for Placentia Bay/Grand Banks (PBGB LOMA) and the Newfoundland and Labrador portion of the Gulf of St. Lawrence (GOSLIM LOMA)
  • 5 Coastal Management Area committees within the LOMAs
  • South Coast Oil Spill Risk Assessment
  • Introductions and Transfers of Aquatic Organisms
  • National Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (NPA)
  • Atlantic Coastal Zone Information Steering Committee
  • Aquatic Invasive Species Committee


Climate Change
This Division is the lead agency on the province’s response to the issues of climate change. Initiatives undertaken are aimed at reducing greenhouse gases and increasing the adaptive capacity of government, communities, businesses and individuals to deal with the effects of climate change, particularly the impacts of climate change on the coastal and ocean areas, including coastal flooding, coastal erosion and storm surges.
Coastal and Ocean Management
The Division works with the provincial Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture to co-lead policy development for the province in the area of coastal and ocean management. It co-chairs the Provincial Coastal and Ocean Network of provincial government department representatives and participates in a number of coastal and ocean committees.


Water Resources Management Division
Water Resources ensures that the province’s water resources are protected, conserved and enhanced to provide the greatest possible sustainable benefits to the province through watershed management, water quality monitoring and reporting, and monitoring and training operators. This Division also oversees community water and wastewater. The Division issues permits for alterations (wharves, infilling, marine works, landscaping, shoreline development, outfalls and intakes) and licences for the allocation of water rights to water intakes for fish plants or hydro facilities and for aquaculture projects. It participates in the Atlantic Coastal Action Program and the Canadian Shellfish Sanitation Program. Through the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment, the Division is developing a Municipal Waste Water Effluent Strategy, which will be a significant driver in improving ocean receiving waters. In cooperation with the government of Canada, a new sewage outfalls database was developed for the province; it includes a Web application to allow data input and review.
Pollution Prevention Division
The Division is responsible for preventing pollution of the province’s air, water and soil ecosystems and is responsible for waste management standards. It works with industry to make significant reductions in air emissions and other pollutants. It monitors pollutants and environmental effects and ensures industrial compliance with environmental regulations. This Division currently regulates industrial effluent discharges to water bodies, including the ocean, under the Environmental Control Water and Sewage Regulations. The Division has begun developing industry-specific industrial effluent regulations that will enable the establishment of appropriate environmentally-protective discharge parameters. The Division works with the government of Canada and industry to reduce the risk of marine oil spills; it also participates in the Atlantic Regional Environmental Emergencies Team.
Environmental Assessment Division
Environmental Assessment coordinates the provincial environmental assessment process for new development. It ensures that development projects proceed in an environmentally acceptable manner.


Crown Lands Administration Division
The Crown Lands Administration Division is responsible for administering approximately 88 per cent of the provincial land mass as Crown land. The Division makes land available for industry, settlement, recreational and conservation needs in an environmentally safe manner compatible with adjoining land uses. The Division investigates adverse land claims, protects the Crown land resource from unlawful alienation through the enforcement of the Lands Act, reviews and inspects legal surveys, prepares legal documents of title for all dispositions of Crown land, creates land ownership mapping, maintains an air photo and map library, and maintains a land registry of Crown titles and records.
Surveys and Mapping Division
This is a central service group to government and the public. It coordinates the provincial geomatics strategy and facilitates integration of geo-spatial data by providing standard services in topographic mapping, geodesy, aerial photography and geographical names. The Division is the lead provincial geomatics agency under the Canadian Geomatics Accord and represents the province in endeavours to build the Canadian Geospatial Data Infrastructure. The Division has been active in federal/provincial cost-shared projects to create and maintain digital base maps and to make mapping available for use by government, industry and the public.
Land Management Division
The Land Management Division develops and coordinates land use management plans. It develops land use policy, identifies plans and develops cottage lot recreation areas, and facilitates cooperation among departments to ensure that there is no conflict with respect to use of Crown lands.


Parks and Natural Areas Division
Parks and Natural Areas are responsible for planning, establishing and managing Newfoundland and Labrador’s provincial parks, wilderness and ecological reserves, and Canadian heritage rivers. The Division is a member of the Canadian Parks Council and the Canadian Heritage Rivers Board, and works with Parks Canada in planning new national parks and national marine conservation areas in the province. This Division is responsible for 54 parks and natural areas, 30 of which have coastal components. Each of six seabird ecological reserves (Baccalieu Island, Cape St. Mary’s, Funk Island, Gannet Islands, Hare Bay Islands and Witless Bay Islands) protects an area of marine waters.
Wildlife Division
The Division protects, manages and conserves the province’s biodiversity, wildlife resources and wildlife habitat. This includes determining the status of species in the province and developing recovery strategies for species at risk. The Division interacts with the government of Canada, other provinces, academia and industry on species at risk and biological diversity. It provides support for coastal, wetland and habitat stewardship initiatives. The Division reviews activities and recommends mitigation measures that are intended to minimize impacts on wildlife and wildlife habitat.


Sustainable Development
Sustainable Development will oversee the implementation of the Sustainable Development Act, which will require sharing resources and goals across all departments and sectors to succeed in the integration of social, economic and environmental concerns across government and society.
Institute of Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science and Sustainability
The Institute of Biodiversity, Ecosystem Science and Sustainability functions as the formal linkage between government departments and the academic research community and facilitates the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources.

Department of Natural Resources

The mandate of the Department of Natural Resources includes supervision, control and direction of all matters relating to the promotion and exploration of mineral and energy resources and related industry development activities. The Department is responsible for overseeing the forestry, agri-foods, geology, mining, electricity and oil and gas sectors. This Department administers the Canada/Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act and the associated Regulations.


The Division fosters the exploration, development and production of hydrocarbon resources. It provides related geological, geophysical, engineering and regulatory services. It assesses development options, issues petroleum rights, processes applications for petroleum exploration programs, and drafts legislation and regulations relating to petroleum exploration and production.

In addition, it drafts legislation and regulations in concert with its federal equivalents for the offshore area covered by the Atlantic Accord Act.


The Division plans, develops and implements fiscal policies and procedures for the administration and monitoring of petroleum projects. Its activities include negotiating, preparing and developing petroleum fiscal agreements and related provincial legislation; developing and administering onshore and offshore petroleum royalty regulations; planning, coordinating and executing audits of project operators and owners; and collecting, monitoring and administering revenues from these petroleum projects.

Both divisions provide information to the Department’s executive, other governments and other government agencies, active and prospective members of the petroleum industry, and to the general public.

Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development

The Department’s mandate is to lead the development of a competitive economic environment that encourages and supports private sector business growth and long-term sustainable employment and economic diversification with particular attention to rural areas. It promotes the export of goods and services, attracts new business enterprises and industries, and provides business information, counselling and financial support programs and services to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The Department operates four lines of business in support of development and diversification: small and medium-sized enterprise development; industrial diversification; innovation; and business promotion; trade and investment development. The Department also administers several programs aimed at promoting the ocean sector, including the following:

Fish Plant Workers Employment Assistance Program for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
The program provides new entrepreneurs and expanding small businesses with funding to employ fish plant workers negatively affected by the closure of a fish plant. The program is intended to accelerate growth and expansion plans of SMEs and to create new, long-term, full-time employment in support of government’s comprehensive regional diversification strategy.
Fisheries Loan Guarantee Program
The program supports the development of the independent fish harvesting industry by providing a government guarantee on loans through local chartered banks for the purchase of new or used fishing vessels as well as new engines and fishing equipment for existing vessels.
Shellfish Aquaculture Working Capital Fund
The fund provides loans to commercial aquaculture businesses, in particular shellfish aquaculture operators, in order to alleviate the difficulty obtaining capital traditionally observed within the sector. These loans are meant to supplement funds available from other government and non-government sources.
Strategic Sector Development
Strategic Sector Development focuses on the development and implementation of industry strategies to take advantage of new business opportunities. The Department works closely with industry, economic development groups and the federal and provincial governments to develop and implement strategies that support the growth and diversification of strategic sectors. There are four sectors identified under the strategy that relate to the ocean sector.
Life Sciences/Biotechnology Sector
One focus of the sector is marine biotechnology. The Department works with the Atlantic Canada Bio-Industries Association, the Newfoundland Association of Technology Industries (NATI) and the provincial industry association for advanced technologies.
Information and Communications Technologies Sector
The sector works to leverage joint projects with NATI. The Canadian Centre for Marine Communications, Genesis Corp., Memorial University’s commercial transfer organization, and the Centre for Marine Simulation are based in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Department supports the sector through:
  • the Innovation Strategy that highlights opportunities for research and development and investment
  • working with key stakeholders, including industry associations, to promote and develop the sector
  • support for local companies to attend trade shows and conferences
  • supporting broadband and advanced networks development
Manufacturing Sector
The sector contributes to the provincial economy in both rural and urban areas. The Department works with industry, economic development groups, and the federal and provincial governments to develop and implement growth and diversification strategies. The Department focuses on sub-sectors likely to experience growth nationally and internationally. Development activities include:
  • assisting the formation of the boat building sector of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association
  • providing assistance to industry to participate in trade shows
  • developing training programs with partner groups
  • assisting the formation of a consortium to access export markets and facilitation of training and information sessions in the building products sector
  • compiling a profile of opportunities and challenges in the metalworking industry
  • working on public and private sector procurement to assist industry access to government and large company purchasing
Marine Technologies Sector
The sector is a significant contributor to the provincial economy. The Department supports the sector by:
  • working on developing and promoting key stakeholders initiatives, including Oceans Advance, NATI, the Canadian Centre for Marine Communications, Memorial University, the Marine Institute, the City of St. John’s, C-CORE, the federal government (including the National Research Council’s Institute for Ocean Technology and Industrial Assistance Research Program, Industry Canada, and ACOA)
  • supporting local companies to participate in trade shows and conferences
  • partnering with other agencies to assist firms
Newfoundland and Labrador Export Directory
The directory profiles Newfoundland and Labrador companies that export goods and services. It is distributed to Canadian consulates and embassies as well as to contacts in current markets (e.g. United States, Ireland, Iceland and Greenland), local industry associations, government partners and economic development groups.
Regional/Sectoral Diversification Fund
The fund provides nonrepayable contributions to eligible organizations for the development and implementation of economic initiatives that address regional and sectoral development.
Canada/Newfoundland and Labrador Labour Market Development Agreement
Under the agreement, the governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador collaborate on employment programs designed to meet the needs of communities, employers and the unemployed. Activities include targeted wage subsidies, self-employment assistance, job creation partnerships and skills development.

Department of Government Services

The Department is responsible for the supervision, control and direction of matters related to vital statistics, motor vehicles, public health, environmental protection, public safety, printing services, provincially regulated financial institutions, consumer and commercial affairs and compliance with occupational health and safety legislation.

Offshore Occupational Health and Safety
The governments of Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Canada are moving to enshrine existing offshore occupational health and safety practices into law.
Fibreglass Boat Repair Facilities
Due to numerous health and safety hazards associated with the fibreglass boat building and repair industry, the Department recognized a need to focus particular attention on these facilities. Government Services has delivered workshops outlining various regulatory requirements specific to the industry. Industry representatives and suppliers offered attendees practical solutions to achieve compliance. Inspection efforts have since commenced and approximately 50 per cent of facilities have been inspected to date.

Department of Municipal Affairs

The Department administers the Canada – Newfoundland and Labrador Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund (MRIF). The primary investment focus of MRIF is “green" municipal infrastructure. At least 60 per cent of the contribution funding this program will go to green projects that improve the quality of the environment and contribute to clean air, soil and water.

The Department of Municipal Affairs is responsible for the administration and implementation of theUrban and Rural Planning Act, 2000. Under this Act, the provincial government and municipalities may prepare plans and regulations controlling land use and development including the use of land along or attached to shorelines. The legislation also provides for the preparation of provincial land-use policies. A plan prepared under the Act as well as all development must comply with the approved provincial land-use policy.


EMO is administered under the Department’s umbrella. It is responsible for the development and maintenance of effective provincial emergency preparedness, response and recovery measures with a view to mitigating the human suffering and loss of property caused by actual or imminent emergencies and disasters in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation

The Department is responsible for the tourism, heritage, arts and recreation and sport sectors.

The Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation has as its focus a range of tourism, leisure and recreation activities that take place in the marine environment, including coastal zones and estuaries, the near-shore and offshore ocean waters. The Department comments on applications for development in the marine and coastal areas received by federal and provincial funding agencies from the private and not for profit sector.

Within this context, marine tourism encompasses both non-consumptive and consumptive activities. Non consumptive uses include sightseeing and coastal touring (viewscapes, geographic features and marine heritage such as coastal communities, fishing heritage and lighthouses), wildlife and nature observation (marine mammals, for example whale-watching, and bird-watching including seabirds), boating and boat charters (sightseeing boat tours, sailing/yachting, boat rentals, sea kayaking, canoeing, other personal watercraft), iceberg viewing (both shore-based and boat tours), cruises (including large-ship, expedition and coastal cruising); scuba diving (guided and non-guided), coastal hiking and biking, water sports (including wind surfing, surfing, swimming), marine archaeology, natural and cultural education and learning adventures. Consumptive uses are mainly estuarial and saltwater recreational and sport fishing (guided and non-guided).

Marine tourism also includes coastal tourism development (hotels, resorts, inns, bed and breakfasts, restaurants, food industry, vacation homes, second homes, etc. located on coastal margins), and the infrastructure supporting coastal development and marine-based activities (ferry transportation, retail businesses, marinas, fishing supply stores, dive shops, fishing wharves and related infrastructure, recreational boating marinas and harbours, lighthouses, beaches, and recreational fishing facilities).

Ecotourism or nature tourism is defined as “Tourism that involves traveling to relatively undisturbed or uncontaminated natural areas with the specific object of studying, admiring and enjoying the scenery and its wild plants and animals, as well as any existing cultural areas." Ecotourism in association with marine and coastal areas (especially those areas associated with national and provincial parks and ecological reserves) is a growing and important element of marine tourism and recreation and presents special challenges. As with marine tourism, marine ecotourism activities must be managed properly and with special care in order to be sustainable.

Marine tourism and coastal tourism development also includes public and private programs and investment directed at or affecting these activities. These include business development and support programs, environment and conservation programs, marine infrastructure and marine industries development.

The Department is also preparing new policy related to the preservation and adaptive re-use of significant lighthouses. With the Department of Environment and Conservation, it is involved in the development of a revised provincial tour boat policy.

Fisheries Heritage Preservation Program
The program assists in the preservation and presentation of the fisheries heritage of Newfoundland and Labrador. Assistance is provided for repair or restoration of historic fisheries structures and buildings and heritage features using original materials.
Marine Tourism
The Department has prepared a Marine Tourism Scoping Document that will form the basis for developing a marine tourism strategy.

Department of Transportation and Works

The Department manages 16 ferry services involving 19 owned or contracted vessels. The Department is responsible for 19 marine vessels, 48 wharves and 41 terminals.

Department of Labrador and Aboriginal Affairs

The Department is responsible for coordinating government activities related to Labrador and Aboriginal Affairs, including developing policy and programs, managing federal-provincial agreements, negotiating land claims and self-government agreements, implementing and managing land claims agreements, public information, and matters of significant public interest in Labrador.

Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement
The Department is responsible for leading the provincial government implementation of the agreement, which addresses fisheries (defined as including commercial and sports fishing, aquatic plants, aquaculture and Inuit subsistence harvesting), and ocean management (including marine protected areas, marine shipping and transportation, sea ice, petroleum exploration and development plans and management of estuarine, coastal and marine areas) in the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area. Under the Agreement, Labrador Inuit own Labrador Inuit Lands, which include a substantial portion of the coastline of northern Labrador.

Executive Council — Rural Secretariat

The Rural Secretariat works in a collaborative way with all government departments to promote regional sustainability in the province. This involves reviewing and assisting in the development of any government policy which may affect the social, economic, environmental, cultural and demographic well-being of any rural area in the province. From an oceans perspective, the Rural Secretariat works to ensure that the interests of coastal communities and the province as a whole are considered and respected when developing oceans management initiatives or policies.

Summary of Ocean-Related Legislation — Newfoundland and Labrador

Legislation Purpose As It Relates To Oceans Programs
Department of Environment and Conservation
Endangered Species Act Authorizes the implementation of regulations to ensure seafood is purchased, processed and marketed under sanitary conditions and sets compulsory standards for facilities used in these activities.
Environmental Protection Act Authorizes the regulation and enhancement of the fishery and implementation of programs to sustain and improve the fishery including purchasing, harvesting, transport, processing, marketing, education, development, fish inspection and fish quality.
Geographical Names Board Act Provides for the Geographical Names Board, which makes recommendations to the Minister for approval of the names of places or geographical features.
Lands Act Provides for the management and control of Crown lands, public lands and other lands in the province.
Provincial Parks Act Provides for the establishment, management and administration of provincial parks.
Water Resources Act Provides for the control and management of water resources in the province, including the protection of water (flood plains, shorelines and wetlands).
Wild Life Act Relates to wild life, including the fish which run up from the sea into inland waters and provides for the issue, suspension and cancellation of licences or permits.
Wilderness and Ecological Reserves Act Provides for the creation of reserves that may contain representative or unique ecosystems, species or natural phenomena.
Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture
Aquaculture Act Provides for the encouragement and regulation of an aquaculture industry in the province.
Fish Inspection Act Provides for the inspection of fish, including requiring and providing for the licensing of persons engaged in, and establishments used in or in connection with buying, handling, storing, grading, processing, transporting or marketing fish or marine plants.
Fish Processing Licensing Board Act Establishes the Fish Processing Licensing Board that makes recommendations regarding fish processing licensing applications, applications for the addition of new species to existing licences, and corporate concentration, merger and acquisition issues.
Fisheries Act Authorizes the collection of information from a fish business or enterprise that catches, produces, processes, buys, sells, exports or markets fish or fish products; or manufactures, imports, distributes, purchases or sells gear, engines, equipment or other supplies used in fishing or in equipping a boat or vessel for fishing activity; or constructs, manufactures, imports, distributes, purchases or sells fishing vessels or hulls to be outfitted as fishing vessels and materials to be used in the construction, repair or modification of those vessels.
Fisheries Restructuring Act Provides for the ratification, confirmation and adoption of an agreement between the governments of the province and Canada respecting the restructuring of the Newfoundland and Labrador fishery.
Professional Fish Harvesters Act Establishes the Professional Fish Harvesters Certification Board and provides for the certification of professional fish harvesters.
Department of Finance
Industrial Development Corporation Act Establishes the Newfoundland and Labrador Industrial Development Corporation, which provides financing to existing or proposed businesses.
Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment
Fishing Industry Collective Bargaining Act Provides for collective bargaining between certain fishers or associations of fishers and certain persons or associations of persons engaged in the processing of fish.
Labour Standards Act Provides uniform minimum standards of conditions of employment.
Occupational Health and Safety Act Provides for occupational health and safety in the province.
Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development
Business Investment Corporation Act Incorporates the Business Investment Corporation, which provides financing to small to medium-sized private businesses, cooperatives, community development corporations and other enterprises.
Economic Diversification And Growth Enterprises Act Establishes the Economic Diversification and Growth Enterprises program to promote economic development.
Research Council Act Promotes research with the object of investigating or improving of technical processes and methods.
Department of Municipal Affairs
City of St. John’s Act Provides for penalties for obstructing a public cove or the waters of a cove.
Emergency Measures Act Provides for emergency measures powers, including the extension of power over transportation by land, air or water and the regulation of travel in, into or out of a part of the province that is or may be affected by a civil disaster.
Urban And Rural Planning Act, 2000 Provides for urban and rural planning in the province.
Department of Natural Resources
Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act Provides for the implementation of an agreement between the governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador on offshore petroleum resource management and revenue sharing.
Mineral Act Provides for the acquisition of mineral rights in the province, including those minerals located in, on or under land under water.
Petroleum and Natural Gas Act Establishes the Fisheries Compensation Board for Petroleum Related Damages.
Plant Protection Act Authorizes inspectors to enter land, a building, structure or other place or a train, aircraft, vehicle, vessel or other carrier to determine compliance with this Act.
Quarry Materials Act, 1998 Provides for the issuing of beach permits to quarry, excavate, remove and dispose of quarry material from a beach provided that the removal of the quarry material is for non-commercial use and that the quarry material to which the beach permit applies is vested in the Crown.
Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation
Cruiseship Authority Act Establishes an authority to coordinate the development and operations of a cruiseship tourism industry in the province and in particular to plan, promote, develop and monitor that industry.
Historic Resources Act Provides for the protection and preservation of historic and palaeontological resources.
Tourist Establishments Act Provides for the licensing and regulation of tourist establishments.
Department Of Labrador And Aboriginal Affairs
Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement Act Ensures that provisions, terms or conditions of the Act have precedence over provisions of or regulations made under other acts that are inconsistent or conflict with the Act.

Published by:

Oceans Directorate
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0E6


© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada 2009

Cat. No. Fs23-319/1-2008E-PDF
ISBN 978-1-100-11271-8

Date modified: