Provincial Policy Statement (PPS)
The PPS Natural Heritage policies include protection for: significant wetlands, fish habitat, significant woodlands, significant wildlife habitat and the habitat of endangered and threatened species. The identification of these features and their ecological functions is critical to assessing impacts of almost all of our projects.
As the basis for Natural Heritage policies in Ontario, we have a thorough understanding of the PPS and the implications of this policy for our clients.
The policies are addressed through the preparation of environmental impact studies, PPS compliance statement and environmental reports specific to the natural feature.
Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan (ORMCP)
The Oak Ridges Moraine Act and Conservation Plan provides guidance on how development proceeds on the Moraine. The plan requires that all development from garages and houses to plans of subdivision, conduct a Natural Heritage Evaluation. NEA has conducted numerous studies for private landowners and developers across the length of the Moraine and has a thorough understanding of this policy and municipal zoning by laws and official plans requirements.
Endangered Species Act (ESA)
The Ontario Endangered Species Act (ESA) was enacted in June 2007 and the list of species is updated annually by Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF). The act provides protection for threatened and endangered wildlife in Ontario. NEA has expert staff that specializes in Species at Risk. NEA can provide services from field inventories, species and habitat identification/mapping to management plans, monitoring programs and obtaining necessary permits from MNRF. NEA has MNRF certified butternut health assessors to help with identifying, completing butternut health assessments, documentation and permitting. NEA is experienced with Overall Benefit Permits for whip-poor-wills, bobolink, eastern meadowlark, barn swallow, gray ratsnake, loggerhead shrike, Blanding’s turtle, redside dace and many other species across Ontario.
Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act (LRIA)
The Lake and Rivers Improvement Act (LRIA) provides the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) authority to manage the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of dams in Ontario. The Act also applies to alterations to watercourses, water crossings, pipeline installations, dredging, and floodplain fill.
Our expert staff can determine if your projects requires approval under the Act and provide all aquatic assessment and documentation required for permitting and approvals.
Conservation Authorities Policies and Regulations
Current knowledge regarding recent changes to the regulations that conservation authorities work under is key to addressing concerns of these regulatory agencies. NEA has a working relationship with most of the conservation authorities in Ontario and a reputation for providing quality assessments that meet their policies and providing them with natural heritage information required for them to review a project. The supporting policy documents and guidelines that conservation authorities administer cover all wetlands, watercourses, significant woodlands, floodplains, valleys and natural heritage system features. NEA can assist with obtaining permits, addressing violations, completing wetland and watercourse compensation/offsetting plans and providing advice on their policies.
Lake Simcoe Protection Act and Protection Plan
The Lake Simcoe Protection Act and Protection Plan includes natural heritage policies for natural features within the Lake Simcoe Watershed. NEA can provide advice on requirements of this new legislation particularly in areas outside of settlement areas that is key to addressing the issues related to a development application.
The requirements and mitigation measures are part of our Environmental Impact Study (EIS) reports and aquatic assessments.
The Greenbelt Plan provides guidance on how development proceeds on the lands in the Greenbelt policy area. The plan requires that all development (additions, severances, new houses and developments) conduct a Natural Heritage Evaluation. NEA has conducted numerous studies for private landowners and developers across the Greenbelt and has a thorough understanding of this policy.
Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GPGGH)
This new legislation (2017) covers additional areas beyond the Greenbelt and the Oak Ridges Moraine. NEA has a good understanding of this act and the recent proposed amendments. We can provide guidance on how to address this policy within the Natural Heritage System, the buffer or Vegetation Protected Zone (VPZ) requirements and the preparation of a Natural Heritage Evaluation (NHE).