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Implementation Strategies to Support Federal Sustainable Development Strategy


1.2.8. Through the assessment of risk and the development of science-based knowledge and applied adaptation tools, enable climate change considerations to influence decision making by the Department and by Canadians at large. (DFO)

4.1.8. Enhance the implementation of Species at Risk Act within DFO and EC to protect and recover species at risk relative to their respective mandates by preparing recovery strategies, and management and action plans as applicable. (DFO, EC)

4.5.1. Develop a federal-provincial-territorial network of Marine Protected Areas. (DFO)

4.5.2. Adopt integrated management approaches for ocean activities. (DFO)

4.5.3. Identify indicators and develop draft monitoring protocols for existing Marine Protected Areas. (DFO)

4.5.4. Undertake research and provide advice to decision makers on marine ecosystems, including impacts of environmental stressors on migratory birds, species at risk and ecological risks associated with specific high-priority ocean activities. (DFO, EC)

4.5.5. Make demonstrable progress in protecting ecologically significant marine areas. (DFO)

4.6.4. Decision makers and legislative authorities have science information and tools to manage aquatic invasive species domestically and internationally. (DFO)

5.1.1. Deliver an integrated fisheries program that is credible, science-based, affordable, effective and contributes to sustainable wealth for Canadians. (DFO)

5.1.2. Undertake research to improve understanding of marine ecosystems. (DFO)

5.1.3. Increase knowledge of fisheries resources, their productivity and the ecosystem factors affecting them. (DFO)

5.2.1. Deliver an efficient federal-provincial aquaculture regulatory management regime that is developed consistent with regulatory best practices. (DFO)

5.2.2. Develop and release reporting to Canadians on aquaculture sustainability. (DFO)

5.2.3. Increase the science knowledge base needed to support informed ecosystem-based environmental regulation and decision making, especially that of regulatory-based programs such as Aquaculture Management. (DFO)


LogoDFO's Implementation Strategies to support Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Theme I (Addressing Climate Change and Air Quality)

1.2.8. Through the assessment of risk and the development of science-based knowledge and applied adaptation tools, enable climate change considerations to influence decision making by the Department and by Canadians at large. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

1: Climate Change

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

1.1 Climate Change Adaptation

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 1.11: Climate Change Adaptation Program

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Fisheries and Oceans Canada has the knowledge and tools to respond to the impacts and opportunities presented by a changing climate.

Overall number of adaptation measures undertaken by Fisheries and Oceans Canada that demonstrate that the impacts and opportunities of climate change on oceans and inland waterways have been considered.

>7 (2012-13 baseline value) by March 31, 2014.

13 adaptation tools/measures are under development for use by DFO program managers in the consideration of climate change impacts and opportunities.

Percentage of relevant Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Alignment Architecture programs for which risks have been identified and adaptation measures have been developed for use by Fisheries and Oceans Canada program managers, in the consideration of climate change impacts and opportunities.

100% by
March 31, 2016.

Climate risks have been identified for 100% of relevant Program Alignment Architecture programs.

Adaptation tools are being developed for use by program managers in 30% of the relevant program areas under the Department’s Program Alignment Architecture.

Knowledge is being developed to respond to the impacts and opportunities presented by a changing climate in 50% of the relevant program areas under the Department’s Program Alignment Architecture.

Amount of externally leveraged funding (cash and in-kind) for each program dollar invested in research projects and the development of applied adaptation tools.

20% to 25% by
March 31, 2014.

25% (cash)
55% (in kind)

Description

As a federal department contributing to the growth and sustainability of numerous maritime sectors, and with billions of dollars in associated infrastructure, Fisheries and Oceans Canada is positioning itself to adjust its decisions and activities to consider the vulnerabilities, risks, impacts, and opportunities associated with a changing climate. Through the Program's assessment of risk, and the development of science-based knowledge and applied adaptation tools, the Climate Change Adaptation Program enables the integration of climate change considerations and adaptive management strategies into departmental decision-making on mandated areas of responsibility. Whether it is the management of the fisheries resource, Small Craft Harbours, or marine navigation, decision-making within the Department and by Canadians must take into account a changing climate so that Canada can continue to derive socio-economic benefits from our oceans and inland waters. This program is one element of a horizontal program1 involving not only Fisheries and Oceans Canada but also Environment Canada, Transport Canada, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, Parks Canada, and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

 

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LogoDFO's Implementation Strategies to support Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Theme III (Protecting Nature)

4.1.8. Enhance the implementation of Species at Risk Act within DFO and EC to protect and recover species at risk relative to their respective mandates by preparing recovery strategies, and management and action plans as applicable. (DFO, EC)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.1: Species At Risk

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.3: Species at Risk Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Aquatic Species at Risk are prevented from being extirpated or becoming extinct and are supported in their recovery.

Percentage of listed aquatic species at risk where the risk status has either improved or remained the same as reassessed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada.

85% by March 31, 2018.

For 2013-2014, 94.5% of listed aquatic species have improved or remained in the same risk status as per the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada.

Description

The Species at Risk Act is a key federal government commitment.  The Species at Risk (SAR) program supports the protection and recovery of listed aquatic species in Canada (except those on federal lands under the responsibility of Parks Canada) and their critical habitats and residences with the ultimate goal of preventing the extirpation or extinction of aquatic species.

The program is informed by sound scientific research and considers the socio-economic, stakeholder and community knowledge in support of activities in the Species at Risk conservation cycle.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

By facilitating the implementation of the Species at Risk Act and developing recovery strategies for listed aquatic species at risk, this activity directly contributes to the achievement of targets to conserve and restore ecosystems, wildlife and habitat.

 

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Target 4.5: Marine Ecosystems

4.5.1. Develop a federal-provincial-territorial network of Marine Protected Areas. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians.

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.5: Marine Ecosystems

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.5: Oceans Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

The development and implementation of a national network of marine protected areas (MPAs) will contribute to long-term marine biodiversity by protecting key marine habitats, species and features that are ecologically significant and/or vulnerable.

Performance will be assessed by looking at progression through the four-phased process for developing bioregional networks of marine protected areas.
The four phases are as follows:

  • Gathering Data and Information
  • Develop MPA Network Design
  • Develop Action Plan
  • Implementation and Monitoring

MPA network designs will be developed for the five priority bioregions, and action plans will be developed for three of these regions, by 2019.

As of March 2014, all five priority bioregions were making progress towards the development of an MPA network. During the 2013 – 2014 fiscal year, efforts were made to validate, update, collect and map important ecological, social, cultural and economic data and information to inform network development in the five priority bioregions.  In some bioregions, progress was also made to identify high-level strategic conservation objectives for the bioregional network.

Description:

The Oceans Act (1996) calls for the development and implementation of a national system (network) of marine protected areas within the context of integrated oceans management. Canada’s Oceans Strategy (2002) and the corresponding Canada’s Oceans Action Plan (2005-2007) and Health of the Oceans funding (2007-13) all further committed to making significant progress towards the development of networks of marine protected areas in Canada’s three oceans. Internationally, the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development Plan of Implementation includes the establishment of representative networks of marine protected areas and the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity 2004 Program of Work on Protected Areas has a goal of establishing a comprehensive marine protected areas network within an overall ecosystem approach. In addition, in 2010, Parties to the  Convention of Biological Diversity agreed to the aspirational target of conserving 10 percent of coastal and marine areas through the establishment of “…protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures…”  by 2020.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), Parks Canada, and Environment Canada each have specific but complementary mandates for establishing marine protected areas. In 2005, these departments produced the Federal Marine Protected Areas Strategy, which outlines how their respective marine protected area programs can collectively contribute to a network. The provinces and territories with marine or coastal conservation mandates are also important partners in marine protected area network development.

In 2011, the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers approved in principle the National Framework for Canada’s Network of Marine Protected Areas. The document was drafted by DFOin collaboration with a federal-provincial-territorial Technical Experts Committee that was established by an Oceans Task Group reporting to the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers. The 2011 National Framework provides direction for the design of a national network of marine protected areas that will be composed of a number of bioregional networks. The National Framework outlines the overarching vision, goals and guiding principles of the national network; establishes the design components and properties and eligibility criteria for which areas will contribute to the network; and otherwise provides the direction necessary to promote national consistency in bioregional marine protected area network development.

Marine protected area network development is currently focused in five priority bioregions – Northern Shelf, Western Arctic, Gulf of St. Lawrence, Scotian Shelf and Newfoundland Shelves.  Existing governance bodies and processes established to support an integrated approach to the management of ocean based activities will be utilized, where possible, to support bioregional network development (see FSDS Implementation Strategy 4.5.2).

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 4.5 calls for 10% of total coastal and marine territory conserved in marine protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures, by 2020. Establishing a network of marine protected areas will allow for more effective conservation than would be possible through site by site planning and establishment of individual marine protected areas. For example, networks can help by protecting important, geographically separate habitats throughout the life stages of mobile marine species (e.g., different breeding, nursery and feeding habitats of a marine mammal).

 

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4.5.2. Adopt integrated management approaches for ocean activities. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.5: Marine Ecosystems

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.5: Oceans Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Integrated management plans and initiatives will facilitate the sustainable use of Canada’s ocean resources while meeting conservation needs.

 

Development of integrated management plans and continued progression through the six steps of the Integrated Oceans Management Planning Process.

The six steps are as follows:

  • Define and Assess Area
  • Engage Affected Interests
  • Develop Integrated Management Plan
  • Endorsement of Plan by Decision Making Authorities
  • Implement Integrated Management Plan (including development of action plans and monitoring plans)
  • Monitor, Evaluate and Revise Integrated Management Plan

Implement priority actions and advance through to step 6 of the Integrated Oceans Management Planning Process in all active Large Oceans Management Areas/ bioregions.

 

Four of five areas have completed their Integrated Oceans Management Plans and are in the implementation phase. A plan for the Pacific North Coast area has been completed and is in the final stages of endorsement.

Description

Canada has adopted an integrated approach to the management of ocean-based activities, an approach which includes risk-based and science supported decision-making, the establishment of governance and advisory processes and the development of Integrated Oceans Management Plans.

The integrated management approach considers the environmental impact of an activity on the whole ecosystem, its structure and function and not simply the specific resource targeted. It involves taking into account the cumulative impact of all human activities on the ecosystem within that area.

Five Large Ocean Management Areas were identified nationally as priority areas for integrated ocean management: Pacific North Coast, Beaufort Sea, Gulf of St. Lawrence, Eastern Scotian Shelf and Placentia Bay/Grand Banks.

During the past several years, ecological and socio-economic data was gathered on those specific areas, governance structures were established to be able to engage various partners and stakeholders and risk assessments were undertaken to have a better sense of the significance of human activities impact on ecological components. Integrated Oceans Management Plans for these five areas were developed. These plans will be used to inform implementation of management measures for priority issues within the Large Oceans Management Areas.

The lessons learned in the planning areas will be brought to bear in seeking solutions in areas outside the current boundaries covered by the plans and may also inform development of a national system of marine protected areas (see FSDS Implementation Strategy 4.5.1).

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Integrated management, advanced through Integrated Oceans Management, will help to meet Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 4.5 by informing decision makers about possible impacts of human activities on the health of key marine ecosystem components.

 

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4.5.3. Identify indicators and develop draft monitoring protocols for existing Marine Protected Areas. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.5: Marine Ecosystems

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.5: Oceans Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Science-based indicators and monitoring strategies to inform the management of existing Marine Protected Areas.

Percentage of existing Marine Protected Areas for which indicators and monitoring strategies have been developed.

100%.

As of 2014, indicators have been identified and monitoring protocols and strategies were developed for 6 of 8 Marine Protected Areas. Indicators and monitoring protocols and strategies must be specific to the Conservation Objectives defined for a given MPA. Indicators and monitoring protocols/strategies are being refined as more information becomes available through MPA monitoring and research (i.e. regular scientific review and assessment of baseline data for MPA monitoring indicators). The two MPAs for which the indicators have not been identified, and consequently monitoring protocols and strategies have not been developed, are MPAs that have broadly defined Conservation Objectives. Progress continues to be made via the development of a stressors-based approach which will lead to the identification of indicators and subsequent development of monitoring protocols and strategies.

Description

As part of Canada’s Oceans Action Plan, the Canadian government committed to the establishment of a network of Marine Protected Areas. Marine Protected Areas are one among several management tools that contribute to the improved health, integrity and productivity of our marine ecosystems and help advance integrated ocean management. More specifically, they are intended to protect and conserve commercial and non-commercial fishery resources and their habitats, endangered marine species and their habitats, unique habitats, and marine areas of high biodiversity or biological productivity.

To date, the Department has established eight Marine Protected Areas. To assess the effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas against their intended purpose, the Department’s science program will support the identification of science-based indicators for the conservation objectives of Marine Protected Areas. Once indicators have been identified, monitoring strategies will be developed. These strategies will provide guidance on incorporating ecosystem indicators into monitoring programs and will facilitate appropriate quality assurance when these indicators are used.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Indicators and monitoring strategies for Marine Protected Areas are necessary to assess the effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas in meeting their stated conservation objectives and the need for adaptations and adjustments to their respective management framework so that their role in the conservation of Canada’s ocean areas and marine ecosystems is fully realized.

 

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4.5.4. Undertake research and provide advice to decision makers on marine ecosystems, including impacts of environmental stressors on migratory birds, species at risk and ecological risks associated with specific high-priority ocean activities. (DFO, EC)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.5: Marine Ecosystems

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.5: Oceans Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Decision-makers have science advice and information to support the integrated management of marine environments and resources.

Percentage of requests for science advice on ecological risks and impacts associated with specific high-priority ocean activities, approved by senior management, that are completed.

90%

90 % (9 out of 10) requests for science advice were completed on ecological risks and impacts associated with specific high-priority ocean activities.

Description

Multiple and sometimes conflicting use of oceans requires the integrated management of marine environments and resources be informed by an ecosystem-science based approach. This approach is interdisciplinary in nature and delivers a more comprehensive understanding of ocean variables and their interactions, both living and non-living, and ultimately how human activities have the potential to impact marine ecosystems. This knowledge informs the development of ecosystem assessments and status reports, marine conservation and ecosystem-based management tools including risk assessment tools, ecosystem indicators, climate change adaptation, and cumulative impact assessments for use by policy and decision-makers in the integrated management of marine environments.

The Department’s science program will provide scientific assessment and advice with regard to the potential environmental impacts and ecological risks associated with specific high-priority ocean activities identified by the oceans, habitat management, and species at risk program within the Department. Science will also conduct review and advisory meetings for priority oceans activities.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Science advice and information on the ecological risks and impacts associated with specific high-priority ocean activities (e.g. oil and gas development, aquaculture, impact of fishing gear, etc.) improves our understanding of the potential effects of proposed projects on marine ecosystems, what types of activities may exist in which locations, what types of activities may co-exist, the possible interactions between activities, and the effects on marine ecosystem.

 

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4.5.5. Make demonstrable progress in protecting ecologically significant marine areas. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.5: Marine Ecosystems

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.5: Oceans Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

New Marine Protected Areas will be designated to protect ecologically significant marine areas, which will help to maintain the health of those ecosystems.

Performance will be assessed by looking at progression through the five-step marine protected area establishment process detailed in the Oceans Act Marine Protected Areas Policy and Operational Framework.

The five steps are as follows:

  • Select the Area of Interest (AOI)
  • Conduct an Overview and Assessment of the AOI
  • Develop Regulatory Approach
  • Develop Regulatory Documents and formally establish the marine protected area
  • Manage the marine protected area

Establish active Areas of Interest as Oceans Act marine protected areas by 2020.
Effective management frameworks are developed for all established Oceans Act marine protected areas.

 

All active Areas of Interest (AOIs) are progressing well through the marine protected area establishment process. In 2013-2014, additional data collection and analysis within active AOIs allowed for the development of proposed regulatory approaches.

Details on management frameworks that have advanced and/or been developed for the eight Oceans Act MPAs in 2013-2014 are described below:

Management plans were drafted, revised and/or finalized for the Bowie Seamount, Gully, Eastport, Gilbert Bay, Tarium Niryutait, and Basin Head MPAs, in consultation with each Advisory Committee. Monitoring plans were developed and/or implemented for the Tarium Niryutait, Basin Head, Gully, Musquash, Eastport and Gilbert Bay MPAs.

 

In addition, a community-based monitoring plan was implemented in the Tarium Niryutait MPA, allowing for increased community engagement.

Description

The Oceans Act (1996) mandates the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada to designate Marine Protected Areas for one or more of the following reasons:

  • the conservation and protection of commercial and non-commercial fishery resources, including marine mammals, and their habitats;
  • the conservation and protection of endangered or threatened marine species, and their habitats;
  • the conservation and protection of unique habitats;
  • the conservation and protection of marine areas of high biodiversity or biological productivity; and
  • the conservation and protection of any other marine resource or habitat as is necessary to fulfil the mandate of the Minister.

Marine protected areas are one among other spatial management tools that contribute to the improved health; integrity and productivity of our marine ecosystems and help advance integrated ocean management (see FSDS Implementation Strategy 4.5.2). These areas are part of Canada’s network of marine protected areas (see FSDS Implementation Strategy 4.5.1) and are established following a systematic and collaborative approach.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada has designated eight marine protected areas under the Oceans Act and is pursuing the possible designation of additional areas of interest that are currently in various stages of progress towards designation.

In order to ensure the protection of these important marine ecosystems, each Oceans Act marine protected area must be managed to achieve site specific conservation objectives. The development of a robust framework for marine protected areas is a complex undertaking that requires a solid science foundation, an understanding of the linkages between human activities and their impacts on the area’s conservation priorities, and the support of internal and external partners and stakeholders to implement the management and monitoring measures employed at each site.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

The ecological benefits of marine protected areas have been well documented in the scientific literature. Marine protected areas can protect important habitats, enhance marine biodiversity, and improve an ecosystem’s ability to recover from to disturbances like storms or oil spills. Therefore, protecting ecologically significant marine areas through the establishment of new Marine Protected Areas will help to improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems.

 

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Target 4.6: Invasive Alien Species

4.6.4. Decision makers and legislative authorities have science information and tools to manage aquatic invasive species domestically and internationally. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

4.6: Invasive Species

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #2 - Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 2.6: Aquatic Invasive Species

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Policy and decision makers have access to a sound knowledge base on threats caused by aquatic invasive species and how to minimize those threats.

Percentage of approved requests for science advice on aquatic invasive species completed.

90%

100% achieved. One request was approved and completed and one request was completed without being formally requested.

Description

Aquatic invasive species are a major threat to aquatic biodiversity, ecosystem health, and the fisheries and aquaculture industries that healthy and productive ecosystems sustain. The International Union for Conservation of Nature rates invasive alien species as the second-worst threat to biodiversity, after habitat loss. Recognizing the seriousness of this threat, in 2004 the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers developed the Canadian Action Plan to Address the Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species. The objective of the Action Plan is to prevent the introduction of new invasions, detect new invaders early, respond rapidly to new invaders, and, where necessary, manage established and spreading invaders.

Knowledge derived through science activities, such as research on pathways of invasion, methodologies to detect new invasions, risk assessments, and control measures, supports Canadian and international regulation, agreements, and the development of management frameworks in support of Canada’s Action Plan.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Marine and freshwater ecosystems continue to be impacted by biodiversity loss. Biodiversity is essential to maintain healthy and productive aquatic ecosystems, which in turn, are a necessary precursor for long-term environmental and economic prosperity. Introductions of aquatic invasive species can result in damage to sensitive ecosystems, as well as fisheries, aquaculture, municipal infrastructure, tourism and other important industries. Aquatic invasive species are entering Canada with increasing frequency and pose a growing domestic threat to Canada’s long-term competitiveness, protection of its natural environment, and well-being of its citizens.

 

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Target 5.1: Sustainable Fisheries

5.1.1. Deliver an integrated fisheries program that is credible, science-based, affordable, effective and contributes to sustainable wealth for Canadians. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.1 Sustainable Fisheries

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 1.1: Integrated Fisheries Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Fisheries Management effectively responds to the economic forces and conservation objectives that impact the fishery.

Percentage of Integrated Fisheries Management Plans in which Sustainable Fisheries Framework tools are implemented.

20% by March 31, 2014.

Expected results were exceeded in 2013-2014, for the percent completion of Integrated Fisheries Management Plans in which Sustainable Fisheries Framework tools are implemented.
39% (2013); 48 of the 124 current Integrated Fisheries Management Plans have Sustainable Fisheries Framework tools implemented.

Collaborative and transparent consultations improve governance across all fisheries.

Percentage of fisheries management consultation / engagement processes made public and recorded.

80% by March 31, 2014.

100%; DFO informs stakeholders of all consultation/engagement processes and creates various records of these engagements/processes.

Increase stability, transparency and predictability in fisheries management.

Percentage of major stocks (Atlantic and Pacific) with stable sharing arrangements.

80% by March 31, 2014.

100%; No changes from previous year's arrangements.

Issuance of catch certificates.

Percentage of priority areas addressed.

90% by March 31, 2014.

99.8%; Issued 12,940 catch certificates with 12,914 completed within service standard.

Completed Fishery Checklists for major stocks.

Percentage of Fishery Checklists completed for major stocks on an annual basis.

90% by March 31, 2014.

100%; Completed for all 155 major fisheries.

Description

This program delivers modernized governance and decision making frameworks, policies, strategies, programs and plans (i.e. Integrated Fisheries Management Plans and Conservation and Harvesting Plans, Rebuilding Plans, Recovery Strategies and Action Plans) necessary, as determined through engagement processes and policy reviews, to support a robust and diverse fisheries sector that is competitive, economically prosperous and sustainable.

These tools are developed under the Fisheries Act, the Species at Risk Act and related regulations, in consultation with Aboriginal groups, provinces and industry, to manage, protect and conserve fisheries resources. The program contributes to sustainability and provides for the allocation and distribution of harvestable resources among those dependent on the resource. The program, informed by the scientific assessment of the status of fish, invertebrate and marine mammals, works to provide Canadians with a sustainable fishery resource that provides for an economically viable and diverse industry.

The overall objective is to support a modern fisheries management and decision-making regime that is accountable, predictable and transparent to the people it governs and respects Aboriginal and treaty rights.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

This program’s activities ensure long-term sustainability of the fishery and support the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goal, Protecting Nature; specifically by:

  • ensuring environmental stewardship over water resources; and
  • protecting biodiversity and managing ecosystems sustainably.

 

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5.1.2. Undertake research to improve understanding of marine ecosystems. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.1 Sustainable Fisheries

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 1.1: Integrated Fisheries Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Sustainable international fisheries management and marine ecosystems.

Undertake science research projects to help deliver science advice for policy development and decision-making in international fora (e.g. Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization, Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission, United Nations General Assembly, Convention on Biological Diversity).

100% by March 31, 2014.

100% Comprehensive Science advice provided for all key stocks in NAFO, ICCAT. In NAFO, science advice was provided for all stocks that were up for management decisions in 2013-14 NAFO. Targeted science resources also led to the development of measures to protect vulnerable marine ecosystems and risk-based management plans for multiple Northwest Atlantic stocks, including American plaice and Division 3LN redfish.
In ICCAT, key stocks such as Atlantic Bluefin Tuna continue to be managed based on the best available science advice.

Description

The legal basis for international fisheries management is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. Under this United Nations framework, Regional Fisheries Management Organizations are responsible for managing fish stocks on the high seas and are composed of members from different fishing nations.

Science, being fact based, independent, and peer reviewed, is often called upon in support of international relations. The Department’s science program will conduct research to acquire, synthesize and interpret scientific data to better understand high seas fisheries and their supporting ecosystems in support of international decision-making on marine ecosystems.

Increased scientific knowledge of marine ecosystems will ensure sound, peer-reviewed science to support Canada’s leadership role in the sustainable management and international governance of the fisheries resources. DFO is committed to maintaining sustainable aquatic ecosystems within Canada’s maritime boundaries and being an influential presence in the international fora occupied with these issues.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Improving the management and conservation of international marine ecosystems, through science-based decision-making will improve the sustainability of the world’s oceans and in turn result in healthy and productive fisheries in Canadian waters.

 

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5.1.3. Increase knowledge of fisheries resources, their productivity and the ecosystem factors affecting them. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.1 Sustainable Fisheries

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 1.1: Integrated Fisheries Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Decision-makers have science advice and information to manage fisheries resources.

Percentage of requests for science advice on fisheries resources, approved by senior management that are completed within required timelines.

90%

105%: 66 out of 63 of requests for science advice on fisheries resources, approved by senior management, have been completed. 

Description

Through monitoring, research, and information and data management the science program at Fisheries and Oceans Canada provides an assessment of the status (e.g. growth, abundance, recruitment, distribution, and migration, etc.) and conservation objectives for fish, invertebrate and marine mammals in support of the sustainable management of the Canada’s fisheries and aquatic resource. Science advice is provided to fisheries management to inform decisions on sustainable harvest levels through the Department’s Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat.

The Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat coordinates the peer review of scientific issues for the Department. The provision of advice is shifting from a traditional single-species delivery approach to providing more comprehensive and ecosystem-based advice to support the management of the fisheries.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Increased knowledge of fisheries resources, their productivity and the ecosystem factors affecting them will improve the management and conservation of major stocks by providing for a more comprehensive understanding of aquatic resources that will help to ensure sustainable fisheries.

 

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5.2.1. Deliver an efficient federal-provincial aquaculture regulatory management regime that is developed consistent with regulatory best practices. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

SP 1.3.1: Aquaculture Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Canada’s Renewed National Code on Introductions and Aquatic Organisms will govern the management of disease, ecological and genetic risks associated with the movement of aquatic organisms.

Complete steps to define federal-provincial-territorial roles in managing disease, ecological and genetic risks.

Define within the renewed Code, a process to streamline the licencing of Introductions and Transfers.

100% by March 31, 2014.

 

 

100% by March 31, 2014.

Completed. Federal-provincial-territorial roles in managing risks have been outlined in the 2013 National Code.

 

Completed. Section 6.3.2 of the 2013 Code streamlines authorizations required to move aquatic organisms for which risks have already been addressed through separate conditions of licence and Section 6.3.4 accounts for the issuance of a single licence for multiple equivalent movements.

Description

The Government of Canada is building on initial aquaculture investments by providing $54 million over five years, from 2013 to 2018, to further improve the regulatory system for the aquaculture sector in Canada.  The renewed Sustainable Aquaculture Program focuses on improving the sustainable management of the sector by increasing scientific knowledge and science-based decision making, developing new and improving existing Fisheries Act regulations, and ensuring transparency through enhanced aquaculture public reporting.

The renewed Program will continue progress in modernizing the sustainable management of the sector, creating a predictable, consistent decision-making process that also reduces cumbersome and unnecessarily costly delays.

A core element of the renewed Sustainable Aquaculture Program is the Aquaculture Regulatory Reform agenda.  Its goal is to create a transparent and efficient governance and regulatory system for Canadian aquaculture that has the confidence of the public, investors and markets as safeguarding public interest, protecting the environment and advancing sector competitiveness and sustainable growth.

This agenda involves developing new and amending current policies and regulations under the Fisheries Act and other legislative authorities to address barriers to sector growth while safeguarding the environment.  An example includes the renewal of the National Code on Introductions and Transfers of Aquatic Organisms.  The renewed Code was endorsed by the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers (CCFAM) in September 2013 and is the result of work of the CFFAM Introductions and Transfers Renewal Task Group; a federal-provincial-territorial group with representation from DFO, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, as well as provinces and territories.  The renewed Code defines federal-provincial-territorial roles in managing disease, ecological, and generic risks associated with movements of aquatic organisms and also includes streamlining measures that reduce administrative burden for the licensing of introductions and transfers.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

An effective regulatory regime is one that will ensure that aquaculture environmental impacts are within ecosystem limits while optimizing efficient resource use. In this way, the Aquaculture Regulatory Reform activities of the Sustainable Aquaculture Program will directly and indirectly contribute to the achievement of Target 5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture.

 

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5.2.2. Develop and release reporting to Canadians on aquaculture sustainability. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

SP 1.3.1: Aquaculture Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Progress on increasing transparency, coordination and streamlining regulations, policies, projects, and implementation activities.  

Percentage of planned activities for regulations, policies, projects and implementation activities that are transparent, coordinated and streamlined.  

75% of all planned activities completed or ongoing by March 31, 2014.  

Completed.  Nine policies and guidance documents have been developed.
18 regulatory reports, three policy reports and four new general information reports were made available on the DFO website.
Eight fact sheets and science communications plus two videos were made available on Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s website. In addition, the results of this funded research were published in scientific journals and other publications.  Forty-one articles were published in scientific journals.

Description

The communication of research, peer reviewed, and scientific advisory process is an important component of Fisheries and Oceans Canada's aquaculture science program.  It ensures that regulatory and management decisions made for the sector are informed by the best available scientific knowledge. It also promotes transparency in research results related to the health of farmed aquatic species and the marine and freshwater ecosystems in which they are grown.

The goal of renewed reporting efforts under the Sustainable Aquaculture Program is to provide information which describes Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s aquaculture regime as well as changes in the status and trends across the sector on various sustainability issues.  In doing so, this reporting will provide more timely, accurate, relevant and coherent information, both on a periodic and ongoing basis, to the public, markets and investors about the regulatory management of the sector and its economic and environmental performance.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

This activity aims to enhance the information base supporting improved aquaculture management, which directly contributes to the achievement of Target 5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture. Indirectly, the reporting process aims to encourage improved environmental, social and economic management practices in aquaculture regulation and operations, contributing to the achievement of Target 5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture.

 

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5.2.3. Increase the science knowledge base needed to support informed ecosystem-based environmental regulation and decision making, especially that of regulatory-based programs such as Aquaculture Management. (DFO)

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported

5: Biological Resources

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported

5.2 Sustainable Aquaculture

Program Alignment Architecture (PAA) Number

SO #1 - Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program or Sub-Program Level

P 1.1: Integrated Fisheries Management

Expected
Result
Performance
Indicator
Target Results

Policy and decision makers have access to a sound knowledge base on the broad ecosystem effects of aquaculture on aquatic environments.

Percentage of key priority areas addressed.

90% by March 31, 2014.

Target exceeded. Research undertaken in all priority areas identified in 2013/14.

Description

The Aquaculture Regulatory Science Program was established to support high priority requirements for aquaculture regulatory research undertaken by departmental researchers. The knowledge derived from this research will support Federal, Provincial and Territorial requirements associated with the development of the framework for aquaculture environmental management. Research priorities under Aquaculture Regulatory Science Program will be based on regulatory management requirements and needs in research areas such as ecosystem carrying capacity, ecosystem indicators of aquaculture effects on fish habitat, genetic and ecological interactions of wild and cultured fish, environmental considerations in the siting and management of aquaculture operations, and fish health management.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Science has an important role to play in supporting the Department’s commitment to improved aquaculture management. This research results in more scientific certainty to inform ecosystem-based environmental regulation and decision-making with a view to ensuring that the anticipated growth of aquaculture can take place in a manner consistent with the assimilative capacity of the natural aquatic environment and Canada’s commitment to sustainable development.