SIPS enquired of the Ministry of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship (WLRS) the status of the Cumulative Effects Analysis for Saanich Inlet. We have been informed that a lead official has been appointed whose primary responsibility is partnering with Nations directly to explore the scope of this work and co-develop an approach, in alignment with B.C.’s commitments under the Declaration Act. For the background to why the CEA has been ordered by Minister Heyman you can read more below.
For an understanding of how the government approaches a Cumulative Effects Analysis read the information at the WLRS web site.
Bamberton Quarry – Cumulative Effects Analysis (CEA)
The following statements concerning the CEA are extracted verbatim from Environment Minister Heyman’s “Reasons for Decision” issued in June 2023 on SIPS request for an Environmental Impact Assessment.
“I acknowledge that the EAO concluded that it is unlikely that the Bamberton quarry expansion would result in potential cumulative effects on the Saanich Inlet after considering proposed mitigation measures by the proponent and those that are or will be required by permit conditions together with required best management practices.
“I also recognize that there are unique environmental attributes of the Saanich Inlet as well as previously determined concerns regarding cumulative effects (identified in a Ministry of Environment review of the area in the Saanich Inlet Study conducted in 1996).
“During my deliberations, I initiated discussions with the EAO, the Ministry of Energy, Mines, and Low Carbon Innovation (EMLI), the Ministry of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship (WLRS) and the respective Ministers to determine the best means to address cumulative effects and other concerns raised by the applicant and First Nations. As a result of these discussions, I understand that the province will enhance the Mines Act permit amendment review process as well as develop and implement a cumulative effects analysis in partnership with First Nations. These two measures will substantially enhance the existing regulatory process for the proposed quarry expansion that has been underway since 2019 under the Mines Act in response to the specific concerns expressed during the EAO review.
“WLRS, as the lead ministry, will work with potentially impacted First Nations to develop and complete a collaborative cumulative effects analysis within the Saanich Inlet, which will run parallel to, but independently of, the Mines Act permit amendment process. WLRS may rely upon advice from the EAO regarding the scope, objectives and methods of the cumulative effects analysis and will work together with other participants including potentially impacted First Nations;
“The results of the cumulative effects analysis will not be completed concurrently with the Mines Act permit amendment process currently underway but, if relevant, the results of the analysis will inform future proposed authorizations or permit amendments in the area once results are available;
“The scope and approach for this analysis will need to be defined in partnership with First Nations and will require additional funding for First Nations to fully participate in this process.”
SIPS enquired of WLRS the status of the Cumulative Effects Analysis for Saanich Inlet. We have been informed that a lead official has been appointed whose primary responsibility is partnering with Nations directly to explore the scope of this work and co-develop an approach, in alignment with B.C.’s commitments under the Declaration Act.