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Implementation Strategies for Wildlife Conservation – Species at Risk

Demanding Performance

Implementation Strategies for Marine Ecosystems

Enabling Capacity

Advancing Knowledge and Communications

Demanding Performance

Implementation Strategies for Managing Threats to Ecosystems – Alien Invasive Species

Enabling Capacity

Implementation Strategies for Sustainable Fisheries

Enabling Capacity

Advancing Knowledge and Communications

Implementation Strategies for Sustainable Aquaculture

Enabling Capacity

Advancing Knowledge and Communications

Demanding Performance


Implementation Strategies for Wildlife Conservation – Species at Risk

Demanding Performance

5.1.6 Enhance the Implementation of Species at Risk Act within Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Environment Canada to Protect and Recover Species at Risk Relative to Their Respective Mandates


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
5: Wildlife Conservation
Maintain or restore populations of wildlife to healthy levels.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
5.1: Terrestrial and Aquatic Wildlife Conservation (Minister of Environment)
Population trend (when available) at the time of reassessment is consistent with the recovery strategy for 100% of listed species at risk (for which recovery has been deemed feasible) by 2020.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:

2.5 Species at Risk Management

 

Description

The Species at Risk (SAR) Program supports the protection and recovery of aquatic species in Canada (except those on federal lands under the responsibility of Parks Canada) and in preventing them from becoming extirpated or extinct. The Species at Risk Act is a key federal government commitment. The evidence-based Species at Risk Management Program is informed by the Department's scientific expertise, and considers socio-economic, stakeholder and community knowledge.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

By facilitating the implementation of the Species at Risk Act and developing recovery strategies for species at risk this activity directly contributes to the achievement of Target 5.1 Terrestrial Aquatic Wildlife Conservation.

Non-Financial Performance Information
Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Aquatic Species at Risk and their critical habitat are legally protected, conserved and restored.
Percentage of Aquatic Species at Risk whose status has improved or stayed the same.
To be determined (no baseline established).

Performance Result

100% for aquatic species, for 2012-13, i.e. 15 species remained at the same status level while 4 saw their status improve.

 

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Develop a Federal-Provincial-Territorial Network of Marine Protected Areas

Enabling Capacity

6.3.1 Develop a Federal-Provincial-Territorial Network of Marine Protected Areas


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
2.7 Integrated Oceans Management
2.7.1 Integrated Oceans Planning
Description

Canada has domestic and international targets to establish a national network of marine protected areas by 2012. The Oceans Act (1996) calls for the establishment of a national network of marine protected areas within the context of integrated oceans management plans. Canada’s Oceans Strategy (2002) and the corresponding Canada’s Oceans Action Plan (2005) and Health of the Oceans funding (2007) all further commit to making significant progress in planning and advancing a national marine protected areas network in Canada’s three oceans. Internationally, the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development Plan of Implementation includes establishment of representative networks of marine protected areas; 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; and the 2010 Conference of the Parties to the CBD agreement to a global target of “at least... 10% of coastal and marine areas, especially areas of particular importance for biodiversity and ecosystem services...conserved through effectively and equitably managed, ecologically representative and well connected systems of protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures…integrated into the wider landscape and seascape” 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 waters are also important partners in marine protected area planning.

A National Framework for Canada’s Network of Marine Protected Areas has been approved in principle. It was drafted by DFO in 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 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. It 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 network planning.

Canada has adopted an integrated approach to the management of ocean-based activities, and is piloting this approach within five priority Large Ocean Management Areas. As the goal of Integrated Oceans Management is the sustainable development of Canada’s ocean resources and the protection of at-risk ecosystems, planning for Canada’s national network of marine protected areas will employ Integrated Oceans Management processes at the bioregional level.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 6.3 calls for the improved conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012. Establishing a network of marine protected areas will allow more effective conservation in a way that cannot be attained by site-by-site marine protected area planning, for example 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).

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Bioregional network planners will be progressing through a common eight-step planning process for establishing bioregional networks of marine protected areas. The eight-step planning process provides for the development of bioregion-specific action plans that will be implemented as resources allow.
Performance will be assessed by evaluating progress made with respect to the eight steps of the planning process for establishing bioregional networks of marine protected areas.

The eight steps are as follows:
  1. Identify and involve stakeholders and others.
  2. Compile available information.
  3. Set clear, measurable network objectives and conservation targets for each bioregion.
  4. Apply network design features and properties, identify areas of high conservation value and perform gap analysis.
  5. Consider potential economic and social impacts; finalize network design.
  6. Finalize a bioregional network action plan that includes the network sites, appropriate conservation measures and responsible authorities.
  7. Undertake site-specific planning and implementation.
  8. Manage and monitor the marine protected area network.
Establishment of at least three bioregional networks following the eight-step process will be underway by 2012.

Performance Result

As of March 2013, five bioregions were progressing towards bioregional MPA network establishment. The Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy Target was met in 2012, and work towards the ultimate goal of network establishment continues. Details on each of the five bioregions' progress during the 2012 – 2013 fiscal year is described below:

In the Beaufort Sea portion of the Western Arctic Bioregion, the proposal for a network was endorsed by the Regional Coordinating Committee in 2012 - 2013, and work is ongoing to collect data (for example, work has been undertaken to validate and refine the Ecological and Biologically Significant Areas (EBSAs) and to develop ecoregional subdivisions).

In the Pacific Northern Shelf Bioregion in 2012 - 2013, progress was made on drafting bioregional network objectives, developing the network work plan including a draft engagement strategy and external communications strategy, and identifying an approach for identifying representative ecoregions. Work was also undertaken to compile an inventory and consider the suite of conservation measures available in the bioregion for the purposes of a gap analysis.

Data compilation was still underway in the Gulf of St. Lawrence bioregion during 2012 – 2013, including collaborative data collection with Environment Canada and Parks Canada and preliminary work to support coastal EBSA identification. In addition, progress was made on the bioregional approach to using decision support tools in network design.

In the Newfoundland and Labrador Shelves bioregion, work was undertaken in 2012 – 2013 to identify EBSAs, investigate the potential role of certain fisheries closures in the network, and develop a subset of network objectives. In addition, a working group comprised of DFO, Environment Canada, Parks Canada and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador collaborated on the development of a working paper outlining an approach to incorporating representative areas within the network.

During 2012 – 2013, progress was made on developing the stakeholder engagement strategy to be used in the Scotian Shelf bioregion, refining ecological data layers, creating and validating socioeconomic data layers, and exploring options for incorporating climate change and other considerations (e.g., connectivity) into network design.

 

 

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6.3.2 Adopt Eco-System-Based Approaches for Ocean Activities


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
2.7 Integrated Oceans Management
2.7.1 Integrated Oceans Planning
Description

Canada has adopted an integrated approach to the management of ocean-based activities, an approach which includes ecosystem-based and science supported decision-making, the establishment of governance and advisory processes and the development of spatial plans.
   
The ecosystem-based 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 have been established in Canada and ecosystem-based decision support tools are being applied within these planning units to identify ecologically and biologically significant areas, species and community properties. Guidance has also been developed to define the conservation objectives associated with these significant ecological features.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Ecosystem-based management, advanced through Integrated Oceans Management, will help to meet Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 6.3 by ensuring that the cumulative impacts of ocean activities do not compromise the health of key marine ecosystem components. This will help to improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Ecosystem-based management initiatives, advanced through Integrated Oceans Management, will facilitate the sustainable use of Canada’s ocean resources while meeting conservation needs.
Development of integrated management plans progressing through the six step Integrated Oceans Management Planning Process. The six steps are as follows:
  1. Define and Assess Area
  2. Engage Affected Interests
  3. Develop Integrated Management Plan
  4. Endorsement of Plan by Decision Making Authorities
  5. Implement Integrated Management Plan
  6. Monitor, Evaluate and Revise Integrated Management Plan
Five Large Ocean Management Areas:

Pacific North Coast Integrated Management Area; Placentia Bay/Grand Banks Large Ocean Management Area; Gulf of St. Lawrence Integrated Management Area; Beaufort Sea; and Eastern Scotian Shelf Integrated Management Area.

Will have initiated step 5 of the six step Integrated Oceans Management Planning Process.

Performance Result

Three of five areas have completed and are implementing their Integrated Oceans Management Plans. Plans for the Gulf of the St. Lawrence and the Pacific North Coast areas have been developed and are now in consultation for review and feedback with various groups including federal and provincial partners, stakeholders, Aboriginal groups, First Nations, and regional committees. Although these plans remain to be endorsed, some implementation has begun.

Delays were incurred due to the consultation process and coordination requirements among the numerous parties involved.

 

 

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6.3.3 Identify indicators and develop draft monitoring plans for existing Marine Protected Areas.


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
2.7 Integrated Oceans Management
Description

As part of Canada’s Oceans Action Plan, the Canadian government committed to the establishment of a network of Marine Protected AreasMarine Protected Areas are one among other 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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target

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%.

Performance Result

Indicators were identified and monitoring protocols and strategies were developed for 6 out of 8 Marine Protected Areas (75%). Indicators and monitoring protocols and strategies must be specific to the Conservation Objectives defined for a given MPA. 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 eventually lead to the identification of indicators and subsequent development of monitoring protocols and strategies.

 

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6.3.4 Undertake research to improve understanding of marine ecosystems and support initiatives to identify and characterize vulnerable marine ecosystems.


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.7 International Affairs
Description

Canada was instrumental in building consensus for the 2006 United Nations General Assembly Resolution on Sustainable Fisheries.  The Resolution was a watershed moment in the history of high seas fisheries as it provided a roadmap to identify and protect vulnerable marine ecosystems, at the same time allowing responsible fisheries to continue.   Since then, Fisheries and Oceans Canada has made significant progress identifying and protecting vulnerable marine ecosystems, as well as promoting this approach within regional management organizations and at the global level.  Through our research, the Department’s science program has a leading role to play in identifying and characterizing vulnerable marine ecosystems and ecologically and biologically significant areas as well as in the improvement of sustainable fishing practices and harvesting strategies.  Canada remains a champion of sustainable fisheries and will continue to provide strong global leadership in protecting vulnerable marine ecosystems.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Identification and characterization of vulnerable marine ecosystems in international waters informs the sustainable management of international marine ecosystems by Canada and other countries.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target

Identification of ecologically and biologically significant areas and vulnerable marine ecosystems in international waters.

Number of science projects completed to identify ecologically and biologically significant areas and vulnerable marine ecosystems in international waters.

7

Performance Result

7 projects were undertaken as planned and are ongoing.  Two of these projects helped identify Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems in international waters.  These two projects informed the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization, resulting in the extension of a closure boundary for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems. The remaining 5 projects are helping to identify both ecologically and biologically significant areas and vulnerable marine ecosystems for domestic waters in the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic.

 

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Advancing Knowledge and Communications

6.3.5 Provide Advice to Decision-Makers on Potential Impacts on Migratory Birds and Species at Risk and Ecological Risks Associated With Specific High-Priority Ocean Activities


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
2.7 Integrated Oceans Management
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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
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%

Performance Result

85 % (18 out of 21) requests for science advice were completed on ecological risks and impacts associated with specific high-priority ocean activities.

 

 

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6.3.6 Develop State of Oceans reports


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Safe and Secure Waters

Program Activity:

3.8 Ocean Forecasting
Description

As a maritime nation bordered by three oceans and having an extensive network of inland waters, Canada has a vested interest in understanding ocean processes to enable the prediction of ocean conditions and sea state as well as their influence on other earth systems such as global climate. This is accomplished through research and the long term monitoring of key ocean parameters (e.g. temperature, sea level, nutrients, tides, salinity, etc.) and the management of data to ensure its integrity and accessibility.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

Monitoring and reporting on ocean conditions provides a synopsis of their present state and how they are changing, and how these changes might affect commercial and non-commercial living resources.  State of Oceans reports make a valuable contribution to our understanding of oceans and the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Decision-makers and Canadians have access to information on the state of Canadian oceans. 
Completion of State of Oceans reports.
100%

Performance Result

Canada’s State of the Oceans Report, 2012 was released on August 13, 2012.

 

 

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Demanding Performance

6.3.7 Make Demonstrable Progress in Protecting Ecologically Significant Marine Areas by Identifying Six New Marine Protected Areas under the Oceans Act by 2012


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.3: Marine Ecosystems
Improve the conservation of ocean areas and marine ecosystems by 2012.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:

2.7 Integrated Oceans Management
2.7.1 Integrated Oceans Planning
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.

In order to protect these important marine features, each Oceans Act Marine Protected Area is unique in its design and management regime. Oceans Act Marine Protected Areas do not necessarily include no-take zones (areas where all extractive activities are prohibited), but rather prohibits only activities which are incompatible with the conservation objectives of the Marine Protected Area.

Canada’s Oceans Action Plan (2005) serves as the overarching umbrella for coordinating and implementing oceans activities, and as the framework to sustainably develop and manage our oceans. This plan describes four inter-connected pillars: International Leadership, Sovereignty and Security; Integrated Oceans Management for Sustainable Development; Health of the Oceans; and Ocean Science and Technology. The designation of Marine Protected Areas to protect important, productive and biologically diverse areas and vulnerable species is recognized in Canada’s Oceans Action Plan as a key component of the Health of the Oceans pillar. As one of their commitments under the Health of the Oceans initiative, DFO has commited to the establishment of six new Marine Protected Areas by 2012 (baseline is February 2007).

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 by 2012, in accordance with Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 6.3

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
New Marine Protected Areas will be designated to protect ecologically significant marine areas, and will therefore help to maintain the health of those ecosystems.
Number of new Marine Protected Areas established by 2012.
Six new Marine Protected Areas will be established by 2012.

Performance Result

Designation of seven Areas of Interest is being actively pursued; designation of one Marine Protected Area is anticipated for 2013-14.

 

 

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Implementation Strategies for Managing Threats to Ecosystems – Alien Invasive Species

Enabling Capacity

6.4.3 Implement Canada's Action Plan to Address the Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
6: Ecosystem/Habitat Conservation and Protection
Maintain productive and resilient ecosystems with the capacity to recover and adapt; and protect areas in ways that leave them unimpaired for present and future generations.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
6.4: Managing Threats to Ecosystems
Threats of new alien invasive species entering Canada are understood and reduced by 2015.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
2.8 Aquatic Invasive Species
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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Introduction of aquatic invasive species is minimized and the impact of existing ones is remediated.
Percentage completion of activities that support the implementation of Canada’s Action Plan to Address the Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species.
100% of planned activities funded under Canada’s Action Plan to Address the Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species are completed within specified timelines.

Performance Result

100% of planned activities funded under Canada’s Action Plan to Address the Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species are completed within specified timelines.

 

 

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Implementation Strategies for Sustainable Fisheries

Enabling Capacity

7.1.1 Deliver an Integrated Fisheries Program that is Credible, Science-Based, Affordable, Effective and Contributes to Sustainable Wealth for Canadians


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.1: Sustainable Fisheries
Improve the management and conservation of major stocks.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.1 Integrated Fisheries Resource Management
1.2 Fisheries Strategies and Governance
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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
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, 2012.

Performance Result

Expected results were exceeded in 2012-2013, for the percent completion of Integrated Fisheries Management Plans in which Sustainable Fisheries Framework tools are implemented.

30.2% (2012); 29 of the 96 fisheries have current Integrated Fisheries Management Plans in which Sustainable Fisheries Framework tools are implemented. Some stocks were previously reported as having removal references in place. These stocks do have harvest decision rules developed and implemented. They have been excluded from the 2012-2013 count because there is only a single reference point (the fishery cut-off). There is no upper reference point for these stocks which would define the recovery objective and provide the basis for DFO's three zones (critical, cautious, healthy).

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Collaborative and transparent consultations improve governance across all fisheries.
Percentage of fisheries management consultation / engagement processes made public and recorded.
80% by March 31, 2012.

Performance Result

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

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Increase stability, transparency and predictability in fisheries management.
Percentage of major stocks (Atlantic and Pacific) with stable sharing arrangements.
75% by March 31, 2012.

Performance Result

100%; No changes from previous year's arrangements

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Issuance of catch certificates.
Percentage of priority areas addressed
90% by March 31, 2012.

Performance Result

98.95%; Issued 12,915 catch certificates with 12,780 completed within service standard.

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Completed Fishery Checklists for major stocks.
Percentage of Fishery Checklists completed for major stocks on an annual basis.
90% by March 31, 2012.

Performance Result

100%; Completed for all 155 major fisheries.

 

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7.1.2 Sustainable Development and Integrated Management of Resources in or Around Canada's Aquatic Environment through Oceans and Fish Habitat Management


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.1: Sustainable Fisheries
Improve the management and conservation of major stocks.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems

Program Activity:
See description below.
Description

Departmental restructuring has resulted in the work associated with this implementation strategy having been subsumed under the following existing implementation strategies:

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Advancing Knowledge and Communications

7.1.3 Undertake Research to Improve Understanding of Marine Ecosystems and Knowledge of Straddling Stocks and Highly Migratory Species such as Tuna, Swordfish and Greenland Halibut


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.1: Sustainable Fisheries
Improve the management and conservation of major stocks.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.7 International Affairs
Description

The legal basis for international fisheries management is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. From this convention, the United Nations Fish Stock Agreement was developed to address the conservation and management of straddling fish stocks and highly migratory fish stocks. 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, straddling stocks and highly migratory species.
  
Increased scientific knowledge of marine ecosystems and straddling stocks 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, high seas and straddling stocks through science-based decision-making will improve the sustainability of the worlds oceans and in turn result in healthy and productive fisheries in Canadian waters.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Sustainable international fisheries management and marine ecosystems.
Undertake approximately 20 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).
Complete 100% of planned research projects.

Performance Result

100%: 7 out of 8 priorities were addressed through funded science projects; one priority was addressed by attending the related international meetings and providing Canadian input.

 

 

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7.1.4 Increase Knowledge of Fisheries Resources, Their Productivity and the Ecosystem Factors Affecting Them


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.1: Sustainable Fisheries
Improve the management and conservation of major stocks.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.1 Integrated Fisheries Resource Management
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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
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.
90%

Performance Result

77%: 54 out of 70 of requests for science advice on fisheries resources, approved by senior management, have been completed.

 

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Implementation Strategies for Sustainable Aquaculture

Enabling Capacity

7.2.1 Deliver an Efficient Federal-Provincial Regulatory Management Regime Developed Consistent With Regulatory Best Practices


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.2: Sustainable Aquaculture
To promote the conservation and optimum use of marine resources and the aquatic environment through improved aquaculture management by 2014.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.4 Sustainable Aquaculture Program
Description

Aquaculture Regulatory Reform is an activity of the Sustainable Aquaculture Program. The intent of this activity is to improve the current environmental management regime for aquaculture, and consequently provide industry with a more efficient and transparent management regime. The Canadian aquaculture sector is managed through a combination of federal and provincial legislation, regulations and programs. To implement this priority, a federal, provincial/territorial Framework for Aquaculture Environmental Management established a vision of developing and implementing a credible, science-informed, efficient, effective, and coordinated environmental regulatory regime that promotes healthy ecosystems, economic prosperity and improved governance for the Canadian aquaculture sector.

The guiding principles of this reform are such that the Canadian aquaculture environmental management regime be designed and delivered in a manner that:

  • recognizes the contribution of aquaculture to sustainable use of aquatic resources;
  • demonstrates transparency, effectiveness, and efficiency;
  • incorporates best available science and monitoring information;
  • engages First Nations, and industry and other key stakeholders; and
  • reflects collaborative federal-provincial/territorial governance.
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 7.2 Sustainable Aquaculture.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Successful implementation of the Aquaculture Regulatory Reform will result in an efficient, effective and transparent federal-provincial-territorial regulatory management regime developed to be consistent with regulatory best management practices.
Percentage aquaculture environmental management frameworks and policies completed versus planned.
100% by March 31, 2012

Performance Result

On track. 90% of the targeted aquaculture policy framework for the aquaculture activities regulatory regime has been made available to the public. The completion of the regulations is taking longer than expected due to prolonged discussions with Environment Canada and provinces. Renewal of National Code for the Introductions and Transfers of Aquatic Organisms is in progress.

 

 

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Advancing Knowledge and Communications

7.2.2 Facilitate Implementation of Certification Initiatives and Support Standards Development


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.2: Sustainable Aquaculture
To promote the conservation and optimum use of marine resources and the aquatic environment through improved aquaculture management by 2014.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.4 Sustainable Aquaculture Program
Description

Certification and Sustainability Reporting is an activity of the Sustainable Aquaculture Program. The goal of Certification and Sustainability Reporting is to have a Canadian aquaculture sector well positioned to meet market demands for high value features such as certification for social, economic, and environmental performance. Activities include the development or adaptation and early adoption of certification programs, data collection and management to define and describe sustainability, and targeted communications with stakeholders.

Independent third-party certification has become an accepted way of measuring and ensuring sustainable practices in the conduct of the fisheries industry and increasingly, aquaculture operations. Certification provides transparency of management regimes, helps ensure accuracy of statistics and validity of claims, and improves industry performance on sustainability issues. An increasing number of global fish and seafood buyers are requiring certification as a way of obtaining assurance that a product, process or service conforms to the specified requirements of any of the standards that now exist for the aquaculture sector. For industry, the ability to become certified is viewed as an objective demonstration of a company’s commitment to safe and sustainable production.

Relationship to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

By facilitating the implementation of certification initiatives and supporting the development of aquaculture standards, this activity indirectly contributes to the achievement of Target 7.2 Sustainable Aquaculture by providing a driver for improved industry performance in sustainability issues.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
The Canadian aquaculture industry sector develops and adopts internationally recognized certification initiatives.
Percentage of Canadian aquaculture producers certified environmentally sustainable or positioned to implement certification programs.
80% by March 31, 2012.

Performance Result

Target achieved. The targeted percentage of the industry, in terms of total production, has implemented certification programs.

 

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7.2.3 Develop and Release the First Report to Canadians on Aquaculture Sustainability


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.2: Sustainable Aquaculture
To promote the conservation and optimum use of marine resources and the aquatic environment through improved aquaculture management by 2014.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
S
trategic Outcome:

Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries
Program Activity:
1.4 Sustainable Aquaculture Program
Description

The Aquaculture Sustainability Reporting Initiative is an activity of the Sustainable Aquaculture Program. The goal of the Aquaculture Sustainability Reporting Initiative is to provide a regular cycle of fact-based and relevant reporting on the sustainability of aquaculture in Canada. This reporting process aims to establish a methodology, structure, data sources and data management process to report to Canadians on the environmental, social and economic status and trends of aquaculture in Canada.

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 7.2 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 7.2 Sustainable Aquaculture.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Successful implementation of the Aquaculture Sustainability Reporting Initiative will result in annual reporting that builds on results and relationships to provide increasingly relevant information. By providing increased transparency and valued information, the Aquaculture Sustainability Reporting Initiative will serve the needs of national and regional governments, industry, First Nations and other interests to foster a sustainable aquaculture sector in Canada and allow a more informed evaluation of the social, economic and environmental dimensions of aquaculture.
Publishing of an annual Aquaculture Sustainability Reporting Initiative report.
Begin publishing annual reports in 2011.

Performance Result

Completed.

The report was released and made available on the Department's website. [Aquaculture in Canada 2012: A Report on Aquaculture Sustainability]

 

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Demanding Performance

7.2.4 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


Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal supported
7: Biological Resources
Sustainable production and consumption of biological resources are within ecosystem limits.
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target supported
7.2: Sustainable Aquaculture
To promote the conservation and optimum use of marine resources and the aquatic environment through improved aquaculture management by 2014.
Link with Fisheries and Oceans Canada Program Activity Architecture
Strategic Outcome:
Economically Prosperous Maritime Sectors and Fisheries

Program Activity:
1.4 Sustainable Aquaculture Program
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.

Non-Financial Performance Information

Expected Result
Performance Indicator
Target
Aquaculture research informs high priority Government of Canada, provincial, and territorial regulatory decisions
Alignment of research with the requirements of regulatory decisions as measured by percentage of regulators reporting 'satisfaction'.
Between 80%-100% of regulators reporting 'satisfaction' with alignment of research.

Performance Result

93%:  Completed 14 of the 15 key priority areas and advisory activities identified by senior management. Researched the remaining priority area with support from the Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program and industry.