Projects near water

The New Fish and Fish Habitat Protection Provisions of the Fisheries Act will come into force on August 28, 2019.

Learn about guidance and transitional provisions following the passage of Bill C-68 (The Fisheries Act).

Projects undertaken near water must avoid causing serious harm to fish or impacting aquatic species at risk. Exceptions may be allowed by the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard.

Serious harm to fish includes:

  • the death of fish
  • any permanent alteration or destruction of fish habitat that limits fish species use for:
    • spawning
    • nursery
    • rearing
    • food supply
    • migration
    • any other life process

Impacts to aquatic species at risk include the:

  • killing, harming, harassment, possession, capturing or taking of species listed as extirpated, endangered or threatened under the Species at Risk Act
  • damage or destruction of a residence
  • destruction of any part of the species’ critical habitat

To meet requirements related to fish and fish habitat, and aquatic species at risk and their critical habitat: