Regulation of Dams in Canada

 
Regulation of dams in Canada is a provincial/territorial responsibility and is similar to other areas of provincial jurisdiction such health and education. Unlike other countries, Canada does not have a federal regulatory agency or over-arching program which guides the development of requirements for the safe management of dams. The Canadian Dam Association (CDA), a volunteer organization was formed in the 1980s to provide dam owners, operators, consultants, suppliers and government agencies with a national forum to discuss issues of dam safety in Canada. The Dam Safety Guidelines developed by the CDA can provide regulators with a basis for evaluating the safety of dams within their respective jurisdictions.


Province/
Territory
Ministry/
Agency
Contact Legislation/
Regulation
Regulation Guidelines
(other than CDA)
~ Number of Dams
British Columbia

Water Supply Dams

Minstry of Forest, Lands & Natural Resource Operations
Water Management Branch
           


Scott Morgan
Head, Dam Safety Section
250-387-3265  
Water Act Dam Safety
Regulation
Inspection & Maintenance of Dams
Inspection Guidelines
 Plan Submissions
Regulated Dams ~ 1,650

Unregulated Dams ~ 460
British Columbia
Mining Dams
Ministry of Energy & Mines George Warnock
Manager, Geotechnical Engineering
(250) 565-4457
Mines Act Health, Safety
& Reclamation
Code
Dam Safety Inspection Guidelines
APEGBC Professional Practice Guidelines - Legislative Dam Safety Reviews in BC.
118
Alberta
Water Supply &
Tailings Dams
Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resources Development Javid Iqbal,
Manager Dam Safety
(780) 644 7437
Water Act Water
Ministerial
Regulation
Dam Safety
Guidelines
1360 Water
40 Tailings
Saskatchewan
Water Supply Dams
Water Security Agency Ashley Gusikoski
Dam Safety and
Major Structures
(306) 694-7738
Water Security Agency Act (1) No No 1300 (2)
Saskatchewan
Tailings Dams
Environment Tim Moulding
Uranium and Northern
Operations
(306) 933-7063
Assessment Act No No 15
Manitoba Water Stewardship
Department
Steve Topping
(204) 945 7488
Water Res Admin
& Water Rights
No
(Planned
within 2-5 yrs)
No 570
Ontario
Water Supply Dams
Tailings Dams
(Construction)
Natural Resources & Forestry Ken Cain
Great Lakes &
Water Policy Section
(705) 755-5448
Lakes & Rivers
Improvement
(3)
(LRIA)
Ontario
Regulation
454/96
Construction (4)
LRIA Guidelines
& Criteria
for Approvals
3300
Ontario
Tailings Dams
(Reclamation)
Northern
Development
& Mines
(5)
John Robertson
Manager Rehabilitation
(705) 670 5798
Mining Act No No N/A
Québec (Français)
Quebec (English)
Water Supply Dams
Ministère du Développement durable,
de l'Environnement, de la Faune et des Parcs
(Français)
(English)
Michel Rhéaume
Directeur de la sécurité
des barrages
(418) 521 3945
Loi sur la sécurité des barrages
(Français)
Dam Safety Act
(English)
Règlement sur la sécurité des barrages
(Français)
Dam Safety Regulation
(English)
No 5806 (13)
Québec (Français)
Quebec (English)
Mining Dams
Ressources naturelles
(Français)
Natural Resources
(English)
Louis Marcoux
(418) 627 6365
La Loi sur
les mines

(Français)
Mining Act
(English)
No No N/A
New Brunswick Environment &
Local Government
Paul Campbell
NBELG
(506) 453 3797
Clean Water Act No (6) No 240
Nova Scotia Environment
& Labour
John Theakston
(902) 424 2555
Environment Act
Regulations
No No (7) 200
Newfoundland
& Labrador
Department of Environment
& Conservation
Paula V. Dawe
Water Resources Management Division
(709) 729-4048
Water
Resources Act
(8)
No
(Planned
within 2-5 yrs)
No 500
Prince EdwardIsland Environment,
Energy & Forestry
Darrell Fisher (9)
ADI Limited
(902) 892 0086
No No No N/A
Yukon
Territory
Water Board
Water Resources
Section
(10)
Glenn Ford
Water Resources Branch
Yukon Environment
(867) 667-3104
Waters Act
(Yukon)
No No 21
Northwest
Territories
MVLWB (11) Zabey Nevitt
(867) 669 0506
MVRMA
Waters Act
No No N/A
Nunavut
Territory
Nunavut Water
Board
Joe Murdock
(867) 360 6338
Waters & Surface
Rights Tribunal Act
No No Unknown
Canadian
Federal
Government
Canadian Nuclear
Safety Commission
Dr. Grant Su
Environmental Risk
Assessment Division
(613) 943-9932
Nuclear Safety
& Control Act

Uranium Mines
& Mills Reg's.
(12)
No Various Over 100
(Uranium
Mining
Related)
Canadian
Federal
Government
Parks Canada
Agency
André Roy
Dam Safety Program
(819) 953-4644
Internal Directive
(self-regulated)
No Various Over 225


Notes:
  1. Approvals are required under the Water Security Act in Saskatchewan to construct and operate water storage dams.
  2. The 1300 water storage dams currently identified within Saskatchewan pertains to those having a storage capacity of 40 dam^3 or more. Approximately 8960 dams exist within the province having a volume of 1.0 dam^3 or more.
  3. See LRIA Part 1; Construction, Repair and Use of Dams.
  4. Regulatory enhancements for the life-cycle management of dams is planned within 2 years.
  5. Reclamation of tailings dams only, active tailings dams are regulated by MNR.
  6. Under the Watercourse Alteration Regulation, a permit is required for construction of all new dams or dikes in New Brunswick.
  7. CDA guidelines are the recognized industry standard in Nova Scotia. One of the requirements for obtaining an operating license is to demonstrate compliance with the CDA Guidelines.
  8. Under the Water Resources Act, a permit is required for construction of all new dams or dikes in Newfoundland and Labrador.
  9. Darrell Fisher is a consultant with ADI Limited in Charlottetown, PEI. He does not represent the PEI regulator but is the CDA Board member for PEI.
  10. The Yukon Water Board issues licences for dams that are associated with mining, hydro projects, etc. The Water Resources Section of the Environmental Programs Branch administers the water licences that have been issued by the YWB and provides inspection services.
  11. The Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act (MVRMA) came into being in 1998 as a result of the Gwich'in and Sahtu Comprehensive Land Claims Agreements. The Act created co-management boards for both the Gwich'in and Sahtu settlement areas and it established the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board (MVLWB). With the signing of the Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government Agreement in 2005, the Wekeezhii Land and Water Board was created, and became a regional panel of the MVLWB.
  12. The CNSC also takes into account various other National and Provincial Regulations and Guidelines and International best practices
  13. Number of dams in Quebec that have a height equal or greater than 1 m (2013-04-03)