Environmental Assessment Process
This study will follow the approved planning process for a Group 'A' project under the Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Transportation Facilities. This study will also exercise the process outlined in the Highway 11 Study Design Report – Barrie to Gravenhurst (2005). During the Class EA, specific alternatives for widening / upgrading Highway 11 will be developed. An evaluation of each of the alternatives will be undertaken, which is based on the assessment of environmental impacts associated with each alternative. A preferred alternative will then be recommended, and a preliminary design finalized, including the identification of property requirements, as well as measures to mitigate the associated impacts.
A Transportation Environmental Study Report (TESR) documenting the generation, assessment, and evaluation of alternatives, a detailed description of the recommended plan, anticipated environmental effects associated with the recommended plan and the corresponding ways of reducing or avoiding impacts will be prepared and made available for public and agency review at the completion of the study.
Ontario Environmental Assessment Act (OEAA):
The purpose of the Ontario Environmental Assessment (EA) Act is to help protect and conserve Ontario’s environment by ensuring that projects subject to the Act follow a planning process leading to environmentally sound decision-making.
For projects subject to the EA Act, an environmental assessment involves identifying and planning for environmental issues and effects prior to implementing a project. The process allows reasonable opportunities for public involvement in the decision-making process of the project. An EA document is prepared by the proponent of the project and is subject to review by the public and government agencies before project approval is given.
The Class EA is a planning document approved under the EA Act that provides a streamlined process that projects or activities within a defined "class" must follow. When the Class EA process is adhered to and its requirements met for a project, the requirements of the EA Act are also fulfilled and formal approval under the EA Act is not required.
The Class EA requirements must be met before a project can be implemented. Projects and activities that are defined within a "class" are generally ones that are recurring, carried out routinely and have predictable environmental effects that can be mitigated to some extent.
The word "environment" in this context is defined as any aspect of life that may be impacted by the undertaking. Therefore, "the environment" can include aspects of the natural, social, economic and cultural environments depending on the project in question. The Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Transportation Facilities (2000) outlines the EA process to be followed for specific groups of provincial transportation projects. Project groupings within the Class EA were established for the purposes of consultation, documentation and formal EA challenge (bump-up).
The groups are as follows:
Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA):
In addition to the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act (OEAA), the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) subjects some projects to a federal EA process. The Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) is “triggered” by the following:
Early on in the comprehensive study, the Minister of the Environment has to decide whether the project should continue to be assessed as a comprehensive study, or whether it should be referred to a mediator or review panel. If the Minister decides the project should continue as a comprehensive study, the project can no longer be referred to a mediator or review panel.
For more information, please go to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency Web site at www.ceaa.gc.ca.
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency has the responsibility for administering the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and;
Basics of Federal Environmental Assessment and Screening Process
Last Updated on Oct. 29, 2009