Section III: Analysis of Programs and Internal Services

Programs

Program 1.1: Market Access and Diversification

Description

Canada’s natural resource sectors face two key barriers to market access and diversification: 1) trade and policy barriers, and 2) lack of awareness of Canada’s natural resource products. The objectives of this Program are to break down those barriers and support the development and expansion of markets for Canadian natural resource products by making information available to Canadians, supporting negotiations to reduce trade barriers, and ensuring that regulations are up to date. This helps maintain natural resource sectors’ access to existing markets and increases their access to new market segments.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Mandate Letter Commitments

The Market Access and Diversification Program is home to three of Minister Carr’s mandate letter commitments including the North American collaboration on clean energy and the environment, the Canadian Energy Strategy and the modernization of the NEB. It also plays a strong supporting role in delivering on the Clean Technology Strategy. Details on NRCan’s key achievements in these areas are provided in the box on the right.

In the area of international energy cooperation, NRCan:

  • Engaged with government and industry representatives through G7and G20 Energy Ministers’ meetings, Clean Energy Ministerial and International Energy Forum and in key markets including the U.S., Mexico, India, and the EU to position Canada as the partner of choice for trade and investment;
  • Signed an MOU on Climate Change and Energy Collaboration with the U.S. and Mexico, which expanded and deepened the energy relationship between the three countries;
  • Collaborated with EU partners to assist Ukraine’s efforts to increase their energy independence; and
  • Continued high-level engagement with key nuclear energy partners by; signing the MOU on Canada-United Kingdom (U.K.) Nuclear Energy Cooperation that facilitates collaborative work between government, industry, and laboratories; representing Canada at the International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference; and holding high-level bilateral meetings with key partners including the U.S., China, India, the U.K., Romania, Argentina, and Australia.

Atomic Energy of Canada Limited

The implementation of the new Government-owned Contactor-operated (GoCo) model at AECL was finalized on time and within budget in 2015, including the approval and enactment of all relevant legislative and regulatory changes for this unprecedented governance. model in Canada.

The restructuring of AECL was completed in 2015-16. AECL is now fully responsible for managing federal nuclear science and technology work and all federal radioactive waste liabilities, which it delivers through the GoCo model and related contracts. The major procurement process leading to the selection of a private sector contractor to own, operate and manage Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) was completed on time, and in September 2015, CNL was transferred under a long-term contract to Canadian National Energy Alliance. With an internal reallocation of funding, NRCan’s mandate and important efforts to restructure the Crown Corporation are now concluded. These efforts explain part of the financial and human resources variances

NRCan continued to enhance energy safety and security in marine, pipeline, offshore and nuclear sectors, by updating relevant legislative and regulatory frameworks, including:

  • Completing three major updates to Canada’s energy legislative and regulatory frameworks including the Energy Safety and Security Act, Georges Banks Protection Act and the Pipeline Safety Act;
  • Launching consultations to modernize and amalgamate five existing regulations on petroleum activities through the Frontier and Offshore Regulatory Renewal Initiative; and
  • Supporting legislation and developed regulations to create a moratorium on oil and gas activity on Georges Bank in the Canada-Nova Scotia offshore area.

Continuing its work to maintain Canada’s position as a global mining leader and to diversify markets, NRCan:

  • Advocated for the free flow of minerals and metals within Canada during the negotiations for a renewed Agreement on Internal Trade;
  • Provided advice to Global Affairs Canada (GAC) on potential Free Trade Agreements; and
  • Efficiently implemented Canada’s international obligations to prevent trade in conflict diamonds under the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme.

In the forest sector, NRCan continued to support the development and expansion of markets for Canadian wood products domestically and abroad by:

Map Locating Canada's top forest trading partners
Text version

Program 1.1
Map locating Canada’s top forest trading partners:

1. United-States 2. China 3. Japan 4. South Korea 5. India
6. Indonesia 7. United Kingdom 8. Taiwan 9. Brazil 10. Mexico
 
  • Funding research to inform changes to the 2015 edition of the National Building Code of Canada to allow for wood buildings up to 6 storeys;
  • Supporting construction of an 18-storey wood building at the University of British Columbia, which is the tallest wood building in the world;
  • Supporting the implementation of the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement and its consensus-based approach to land-use planning; and
  • Providing updated forest-related estimates to ECCC for the 2015-16 GHG inventories.

Additionally, NRCan worked with GAC to resolve a NAFTA Chapter 11 claim (details can be found on the GAC website). This mostly explains the financial variance.  

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending
(authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

48,685,006

48,685,006

90,964,090

75,927,073

27,242,067

Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalents [FTEs])

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

239

254

15

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Natural resource sectors have increased access to existing markets

Natural resource sectors have access to markets as defined by exports of energy products, mineral and metal products and forest products

Meet or exceed baseline percentage of market access

(10 year [2005-2014] baseline average of 23.6%)

Results: 25.1%

In 2015-16, Canada’s share of American natural resource imports was 25.1% (1.5% above the 10-year 2005-2014 baseline average of 23.6%). The overall value of American natural resource imports from Canada in 2015 was $164.3 billion, above the 2006 figure of $95.2 billion.

Natural resource sectors have increased access to new market segments

Natural resource sectors have access to new market segments as defined by exports of energy products, mineral and metal products and forest products

Meet or exceed baseline percentage of access to new market segments

(10-year [2005-2014] baseline average of 1.7%)

Results: 1.7%

In 2015-16, Canada’s share of Chinese natural resources imports was 1.7%, stable against the 10-year (2005-2014) baseline average. The overall value of Chinese natural resource imports from Canada in 2015 was $11.6 billion, nearly three times the 2006 figure of $4.3 billion.

Program 1.2: Innovation for New Products and Processes

Description

Optimizing the use of Canada's natural resources and the processes by which they are developed would improve the productivity and competitiveness of natural resource sectors. The objective of this Program is to maximize productivity and competitiveness by encouraging the adoption of new technologies and processes and the development of new products. These objectives are achieved by conducting and supporting research and development and by delivering frameworks and policies for, and demonstrations of, new applications, technologies, processes, and products.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Innovation is integral to maintaining Canada’s competitiveness in global resource markets.

In 2015-16 in the area of mining, an in-year reallocation of funding to support Rare Earth Elements (REE) and Chromite programs strengthened NRCan’s leadership role in R&D into mining and processing of these materials. REEs are known as ‘green elements’ because they are critical to many green energy products, including wind turbines, catalytic converters, energy-efficient light bulbs, hybrid cars, and rechargeable batteries. The Department also launched a new certified reference material, REE2, to ensure the quality of data that informs mineral investment and environmental monitoring.

Aboriginal Forestry Initiative

Through the Aboriginal Forestry Initiative (AFI), NRCan provides direct support for Indigenous forest-based economic development and stakeholder partnerships.

In 2015-16, the AFI funded 12 projects supporting 30+ Indigenous communities. These investments range from feasibility assessments and business opportunity scans to community economic development planning, support for establishment of joint ventures and partnerships, and development of tools, technologies and products that support natural resource development.

In the forest sector, NRCan’s Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) and Forest Innovation (FIP) programs funded the development of more than 10 higher-value technologies and products. These investments have led to new jobs, improved environmental performance and more economic opportunities for the forest industry. Some examples include:

  • Production of 5.2 MW/year of bioenergy from pulp mill effluent, reducing onsite and offsite carbon dioxide emissions by 45,300 tonnes/year;
  • New seedling technologies with the capacity to produce 2.5 million somatic seedlings annually, increasing both quality and quantity of wood for the same forest plot, and the ability to treat up to 40 million trees to increase pest resistance;
  • Cross-laminated timber, an advanced building material that enables construction of taller wood structures, is being commercially produced in Quebec;
  • A Quebec-based engineering firm has adopted a hybrid wood-concrete floor system designed by FPInnovations that provides environmental benefits by replacing more energy-intensive production of steel or concrete floor systems;
  • Wood fibre boards for insulating buildings have now met the existing standard for Canadian insulation products. These insulating boards open a new high value market for pulp chips and can lower energy consumption in buildings; and
  • Creation of a facility that produces 5 tonnes/day of cellulose filaments, which are additives to reinforce products such as paper, tissue, towel, and novel products such as bioplastics and adhesives.

With the January 2015 launch to select audiences, NRCan’s Federal Geospatial Platform (FGP), which supports the sharing, use and integration of its geospatial data assets, passed an important milestone. By March 31, 2016, FGP had released 260 federal geospatially-referenced economic, social and environmental datasets which enable location-based decision-making for sustainable resource development, environmental management, regulatory reviews, and safety and security. This significantly exceeded the expectations, delivering on FGP’s 3-year commitment to releasing a total of 250 federal datasets one year ahead of schedule. The FGP also supported horizontal policy initiatives including the Tri-lateral Energy Infrastructure Mapping Project and the World Class Tanker Safety Initiative, and continued to work with Canada’s Open Government Portal to simplify the tools, policies and processes for the release of federal geospatial data.

The work of NRCan’s GeoConnections initiative further developed Canada’s spatial data infrastructure, and enabled the interoperability of 180,000 geospatial data sets, representing 80 percent of the data available through Canada’s Open Data portal. GeoConnections also supported an environmental scan on the use of remotely piloted vehicles, and the development of a platform to allow stakeholders to effectively use low-cost open source sensing devices.

Internationally, NRCan’s leadership role in open geospatial data access was strengthened through GeoConnections’ efforts with the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management, Arctic Spatial Data Infrastructure and bilateral projects with the United States Geological Survey. Technical outputs include the Arctic Data Interoperability Pilot with the Open Geospatial Consortium, continental and circumpolar harmonized data in support of Arctic Council, and the adoption of standards by 520 stakeholders.

NRCan awarded an innovative contract to operate all of its satellite stations and develop the Inuvik Satellite Station Facility as one of the world's foremost satellite receiving stations, while maximizing local economic opportunities. New partnerships were developed which resulted in the doubling of infrastructure by the Swedish Space Corporation at the Inuvik Satellite Station Facility.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

83,438,001

83,438,001

92,394,682

93,375,233

9,937,232

Budgetary Financial Resources variance mostly explained by Real Property adjustment described in section on Internal Services.

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

249

313

64

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Natural resource sectors increase production of new products and processes

Number of new products and processes resulting from NRCan information

Five per yearFootnote 8

Results: two products/processes

One new product and one new process were developed based on NRCan information, specifically:

  • A database of Canada’s biomass feedstock characteristics and associated modeling tools, to which entrepreneurs and industry now have access (providing access to vital information that increases their probability of a successful bioenergy or bioproducts business venture in a low-carbon economy); and
  • An evidence-based process for forest managers to mitigate the effects of root rots on high-value timber. Root rot is a pervasive disease affecting millions of trees either killing them or severely stunting their growth; stump removal or mixing stands with disease tolerant species has proven to decrease the impact of this disease.

Research and development (R&D) expenditures in natural resource sectors, specifically total intramural R&D expenditures in energy, mining and forest sectors

Favourable
10-year trend

(10-year baseline average of 12.0%)

Results: 13.3%

In 2015, business enterprise R&D expense intentions for the energy, mining and forest sectors were $2.1 billion, slightly below the 2006 figure of $2.3 billion. However, these natural resource sector intentions accounted for 13.3% of total industry R&D spending, slightly above the 10-year baseline average of 12.0%.

Note: only the natural resource industries for which the R&D expenses were available for the entire 2006-15 period, or for which they could be estimated using available information, have been included in the analysis (i.e., natural resource industries for which estimates have been suppressed for confidentiality or data quality reasons for one or more years have been excluded from the analysis).

Public and private sector organizations' business and program decision-making ability is improved as a result of geospatial innovation

Number of public or private sector organizations related to natural resource development using NRCan's innovative geospatial systems, applications or frameworks to aid decision-making

Five per year

Results: five

  • Five federal departments and agencies adopted the FGP to improve the management of their geospatial information.
  • Support from NRCan’s GeoConnections program resulted in improved capacity for decision-making in four organizations (Government of Northwest Territories, SensorUp Inc., Open Geospatial Consortium Inc., Global Spatial Data Infrastructure Association) through improved models, interoperability and content dissemination.
  • An innovative new business model for NRCan’s satellite station facilities resulted in increased partnerships with domestic and international organizations.

Program 1.3: Investment in Natural Resource Sectors

Description

The objective of this Program is to encourage investment in the natural resource sectors by increasing industry's knowledge of opportunities, regulations and obligations. This ensures that a more accurate assessment of the expected benefits of an investment can be made and subsequently compared to its costs and risks, thereby allowing for a more comprehensive investment decision. This objective is achieved by providing funding and information on the factors that determine the potential economic viability of natural resource projects.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Mandate Letter Commitments

  • In January 2016, NRCan (together with ECCC) introduced five principles to guide federal decision-making on major natural resource projects while the Government undertakes a review of the federal environmental assessment process.
  • For two significant projects that were under NEB review, Trans Mountain Expansion (TMX) Project and the Energy East Pipeline, interim measures were taken to ensure consistency with the five principles. These include the appointment of a ministerial panel in the case of the TMX project and the appointment of temporary board members to the NEB to conduct community engagement processes.

The Investment in Natural Resource Sectors Program is home to Minister Carr’s mandate letter commitment to support the Minister of Environment and Climate Change in the review of Canada’s Environment Assessment process.

NRCan’s role in this process includes developing interim measures to guide decision-making on major natural resources projects while the reviews are under way, as well as helping to reset the relationship with Indigenous Peoples through a renewed relationship, focused on finding common approaches to building support for major projects.

Details on NRCan’s key achievements in this area provided in the box on the right.

Highlighting Canada’s positive mining investment climate, NRCan produced 12 information products including Exploration and Mining in Canada: An Investor’s Brief, to promote Canada’s regulatory regime and investment incentives for mineral development. NRCan also continues to manage the implementation of the Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act, which requires public reports from resource exploration and extraction companies on payments they make to governments in Canada and abroad.

NRCan also promoted Canada as a sustainable resource developer, a leading source of expertise, equipment and services at key industry events including Mining Indaba, the 2016 Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) Convention and China Mining.

NRCan supported Canadian investment in mining abroad by enhancing natural resource governance capacity and by promoting clear and transparent policies and regulations in Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru and South Africa. The Department continued to promote corporate social responsibility (CSR) in Canada and abroad, and disseminated tools such as the CSR Checklist to assist Canadian companies operating overseas in respecting human rights, conducting their activities responsibly and implementing strategies to benefit the communities in which they operate.

Minister Carr at the
2016 PDAC Convention

Photo of Minister Carr at the 2016 PDAC Convention
  • Delivered the keynote address and held roundtables on innovation with industry, non-governmental organizations and Indigenous stakeholders.
  • Held bilateral meetings with key international mining partners to enhance their natural resources governance capacity, and to improve the conditions for Canadian companies operating abroad.
  • Participated in the Inaugural International Mines Ministers Summit which brought together 16 national ministers to address current issues relating to the mining sector.

The renewal of NRCan’s Targeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI) program was announced in Budget 2015 with $22 million in funding over five years, this partly explains the financial and human resources variances. TGI is a collaborative federal geoscience program that provides industry with the next generation of geoscience knowledge and innovative techniques, aimed at more effective targeting and recovery of buried mineral deposits. This program has a demonstrable influence on mineral exploration across Canada. In 2015-16:

  • Five new attributions were documented by industry, coupled with anecdotal evidence that the exploration industry continues to use and expand upon the 45 TGI innovations identified in an independent report from 2014; and
  • TGI Ore Synthesis Volumes (six volumes) were downloaded 14,110 times.

NRCan’s Geo-Mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM) program produces modern regional-scale geological maps, data sets, and knowledge for Canada’s North and makes this information available to the public at no cost. This public geoscience is used by Northerners and industry for land-use and resource development decision-making. In 2015-16, GEM:

  • Published 140 new geoscience maps, technical reports and data sets, identifying new areas with a high likelihood of mineral and energy resource potential;
  • Continued to strengthen the integration of scientific evidence into Northern decision-making by engaging with Indigenous communities and organizations, seeking advice from the GEM Advisory Group of Northerners, and providing grant funding for innovative approaches and tools that facilitate the uptake of GEM knowledge by Northerners; and
  • Issued multi-year geoscience grant funding to Canadian universities to help attract high-quality geoscience research activities that complement NRCan expertise and augment the understanding of the regional geological context in Canada’s North.

To meet Canada’s future energy demands, NRCan continues to provide the public and private energy sector with strategic assessments, methodologies and information required to make investment decisions on unconventional (shale oil and shale gas) and northern and offshore energy resources. In 2015-16, NRCan’s Geoscience for New Energy Supply (GNES) completed resource assessments to inform energy-related decisions (including those in Horn River and Bakken regions) and publicly disseminated 33 unique reports.

Budget 2016 announced $135 million over five years, of which NRCan’s share is $21 million over the five years, to continue to improve the project decision process through the Major Projects Management Office Initiative. As this funding had not been included in the Planned Spending, it accounts for some of the financial and human resources variances.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

54,230,114

54,230,114

67,692,074

68,270,162

14,040,048

Budgetary Financial Resources variance mostly explained by Real Property adjustment described in section on Internal Services.

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

355

399

44

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Natural resource sectors have increased investment

Growth of capital expenditures in the energy sector (average of past five years) compared to growth in overall capital expenditures in Canada (average of past five years)

The average five-year growth rate of capital expenditures in the energy sector is equal to or higher than the average five-year growth rate in capital expenditures in Canada

Results:
5.7% average annual growth

In 2015, energy sector capital expenditures were $89.5 billion. Over the past five years (2010-15), energy sector capital expenditures grew by an average annual rate of 5.7%. This is above the average annual growth rate of 3% in the Canadian economy as a whole.

Growth of capital expenditures in the minerals and metals sector (average of past five years) compared to growth in overall capital expenditures in Canada (average of past five years)

The average five-year growth rate of capital expenditures in the minerals and metals sector is equal to or higher than the average five-year growth rate in capital expenditures in Canada

Results:
3.5% average annual growth

In 2015, minerals and metals sector capital expenditures were $14.9 billion. Over the past five years (2010-15), minerals and metals capital expenditures grew by an average annual rate of 3.5%. This is above the average annual growth rate of 3% in the Canadian economy as a whole.

Growth of capital expenditures in the forest sector (average of past five years) compared to growth in overall capital expenditures in Canada (average of past five years)

The average five-year growth rate of capital expenditures in the forest sector is equal to or higher than the average five-year growth rate in capital expenditures in Canada

Results:
14.8% average annual growth

In 2015, forest sector capital expenditures were $2.7 billion. Over the past five years (2010-15), forest sector capital expenditures grew by an average annual rate of 14.8%. This is above the average annual growth rate of 3% in the Canadian economy as a whole.

Program 1.4: Statutory Programs – Atlantic Offshore

Description

Through this Program, NRCan monitors and facilitates payment disbursal agreements and transfer payments under the Atlantic Offshore Accord Acts. The Program includes the following programs: Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board; Payments to the Newfoundland Offshore Petroleum Resource Revenue Fund; Payments to the Nova Scotia Offshore Revenue Account; Nova Scotia Crown Share Adjustment Payment; and Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Accord Implementation Act provide that the benefits of revenues from the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador and the Canada-Nova Scotia offshore areas flow to the provinces as if the resources were on land.

NRCan collects royalties, interests and penalties arising from production in the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador offshore area and the Canada-Nova Scotia offshore area and transfers equivalent sums as well as corporate income taxes and other required payments to the two provincial governments pursuant to the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Accord Implementation Act.

NRCan also administers the federal contributions to the operating budgets of the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board.

NRCan met its target relating to the timeliness and accuracy of offshore payments in 2015-16. The Department anticipated and prepared the necessary materials for payments to be processed within a 48-hour period to both Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador as required under the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Resources Accord Implementation Acts. As a result, 100 percent of payments were made on time.

The decrease between Planned Spending and Actual Spending is mainly attributed to lower royalties for the Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Resource Revenue Fund as a result of reduced oil prices; reduced revenue from the Nova Scotia Offshore Revenue Account as a result of lower currency exchange rate (CAD/USD) that is slightly offset by higher than expected production from Deep Panuke in the final quarter of the year; reduced cost recovery remittances received from the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board; and, lower than anticipated Nova Scotia Crown Share Adjustment Payments due to reduced commodity prices and production in the offshore area.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16

Main Estimates

2015–16
;Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

1,181,938,140

1,181,938,140

347,989,273

347,989,273

(833,948,867)

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

 -

-

-

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Statutory requirements relating to offshore petroleum payments in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador are managed in a timely manner

Percentage of offshore payments processed in a timely manner

100%

Results: 100%

NRCan anticipated and pro-actively prepared the necessary materials for 100% of payments to be processed in a timely manner.

Statutory requirements relating to offshore petroleum payments in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador are managed in an accurate manner.

Percentage of offshore payments processed in an accurate manner

100%

Results: 100%

NRCan anticipated and pro-actively prepared the necessary materials for 100% of payments to be processed in an accurate manner

Program 2.1: Energy-Efficient Practices and Lower-Carbon Energy Sources

Description

Canada’s energy markets are defined by the decisions of consumers and producers who do not necessarily make choices that minimize their impact on the environment. Multiple barriers exist, including a lack of awareness of available options and their benefits, insufficient capacity for adoption (e.g., regulatory frameworks, codes and standards), and financial risk. The objectives of this Program are to address these barriers by encouraging and enabling energy consumers and producers to adopt cleaner and more efficient technologies, products, services and practices. These objectives are achieved through education and outreach activities, targeted incentives, and regulatory interventions that keep pace with technological changes.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2015-16, NRCan worked across a number of policy and program areas to encourage and enable energy consumers and producers to adopt cleaner and more efficient technologies, products, services and practices.

NRCan provided support for Canada’s successful adoption of the Paris Agreement at the 21st Conference of the Parties in December 2015, under the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The Department provided technical information to support decision-making on climate change and energy issues, such as the development of Canada’s intended Nationally Determined Contribution to the Paris Agreement, including the 2030 national GHG emissions reduction target; the development of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change; and, the implementation of provisions within federal regulations related to Carbon Capture, Use and Storage (CCUS) for coal-fired electricity generation.

More broadly on the policy front:

  • NRCan updated 12 oil sands and pipeline information products to reflect current government priorities;
  • Under the Clean Energy Ministerial (an international forum to promote policies and programs that advance clean energy technology), NRCan led Canada’s engagement at international CCUS fora, including the U.S.-led Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum;
  • Within the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN), NRCan took on a leadership role as Canada’s National Designated Entity, working with Canadian companies and associations to inform them about potential opportunities in developing and emerging clean technology markets; and
  • NRCan completed the development of a framework for administering marine renewable energy in the federal offshore, a process that included engagement with provinces and key stakeholders. An additional $1.5 million over two years was announced in Budget 2016 for NRCan to continue to work in partnership with other government departments and key stakeholders to advance the development of a federal legislative framework to administer marine renewable energy projects in the federal offshore.

With respect to Renewable Energy Deployment, NRCan’s ecoENERGY for Renewable Power Program and the Wind Power Production Incentive programs supported the production of 13.0 TWh of renewable electricity in 2015-16. As of March 31, 2016, 18 of 22 projects under the Wind Power Production Incentive program had completed their contribution agreements. These projects remain in operation and are continuing to produce clean electricity. Both of these programs had lower production levels than anticipated, resulting in not all of the funding being spent.

From 2011 to 2016, NRCan’s Alternative Fuels program supported four technical committees in developing codes and standards for natural gas refueling stations and vehicles that helped facilitate lower-carbon fuel use in transportation. Through the Canada-U.S. Regulatory Cooperation Council, NRCan also worked closely with the U.S. Department of Energy to improve Canada-U.S. alignment of existing codes and standards and to develop new binational codes and standards that facilitated greater cross-border natural gas vehicle deployment.

From 2008 to 2012, NRCan’s ecoENERGY for Biofuels program supported lower-carbon transportation fuel use in Canada by targeting 1,881 million and 555 million litres per year of built production capacity of ethanol and biodiesel respectively. Since 2012 there has been a substantial decrease in the number of Canadian facilities supported by the program, attributable to a number of factors including the end of 14 contribution agreements in March 2015 (a reduction from the original 21 agreements), the suspension and termination for non-compliance with terms of the agreement, and a catastrophic event (i.e., fire) at one existing facility. The program had lower production than anticipated, resulting in not all of the funding being spent, which explains part of the financial variance.In 2015-16, NRCan’s ecoENERGY for Biofuels program contributed to achieving the production of 342 million litres of ethanol and 18 million litres of biodiesel.

From 2011 to 2016, NRCan’s ecoENERGY Efficiency program saved more than 52 petajoules (PJ) of energy, exceeding its 5-year target by 25 percent. Energy savings achieved through this program are equivalent to the energy required to power over 400,000 homes for a year. The program's energy efficiency standards, codes and certifications also helped support efforts by provinces and territories to reduce GHG emissions and improve energy efficiency.

Key program results in 2015-16 include:

  • Improvements to the ENERGY STAR ® labeling initiative including the addition of one product category and increasing the required efficiency level of 11 other product categories;
  • Delivery of the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager benchmarking tool to 14,000 Canadian commercial and institutional buildings (representing 169 million square metres or about 21 percent of Canada’s commercial floor space) for tracking and benchmarking energy use. This exceeded the five-year program target of 9,000 buildings by 2015-16;
  • Updates to the National Energy Code for Buildings, which have been officially adopted in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia as well as in Vancouver, BC and Whitehorse, YT. As a result, approximately 70 percent of all new commercial floor space in Canada will be built to the new standard;
  • Delivery of the SmartWay Transport Partnership initiative to more than 34,000 trucks (representing over 25 percent of all on-road freight activity in Canada) to reduce their energy use. Hundreds of companies operating in Canada (e.g., retailers, manufacturers, services) require their transportation fleets to participate in SmartWay as a way to maximize the efficiency of their supply chains;
  • Providing support for more than 50 provincial, territorial, municipal, utility, and non-governmental programs and regulations with NRCan’s EnerGuide Home Rating System, ENERGY STAR, for new homes and R-2000 housing standards; and
  • Assisting with the adoption of ISO 50001 energy management standard in six industrial facilities. Since 2011, NRCan has assisted 23 industrial facilities adopt ISO 50001 in multiple sectors (forest products, mining, transportation equipment manufacturing, food and beverage, cement, and steel) achieving on average a 10 percent energy savings in the first year.
Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

253,978,461

253,978,461

258,837,128

211,012,423

(42,966,038)

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

279

264

(15)

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Energy consumers and producers adopt environmentally responsible products and practices related to energy use and production

Biofuel production in Canada

Favourable five-year trend, as per 2007 baseline
of 786.1 million litres of ethanol and 92.8 million litres of biodiesel

Results: 342 million litres of ethanol and 18 million litres of biodiesel were produced.

The production capacity of biofuels in Canada increased steadily between 2007 and 2012.

In 2015-16, NRCan’s ecoENERGY for Biofuels program contributed to achieving the production of 342 million litres of ethanol and 18 million litres of biodiesel..

Canada's total annual energy savings due to efficiency (difference between energy use without energy efficiency improvements and energy use with energy efficiency improvements; the units are petajoules (PJ))

Favourable 
five-year trend in PJ saved, as per 2008 baseline

Results: 1,613.2 PJ

From 2008 to 2013, energy efficiency savings in Canada showed a favorable trend. While total energy used by final consumers increased by 28% between 1990 and 2013, the increase without energy efficiency improvements would have been 51%.

From 1990 to 2013, energy efficiency in Canada improved 24%, a significant increase in energy savings which reduced energy use by 1,613.2 PJ, saved Canadians $37.6 billion and decreased GHG emissions by 85.4Mt in 2013. More details on energy efficiency improvement as well as information on trends in energy use and energy efficiency in the residential, commercial, institutional, industrial, and transportation sectors can be found in the 2013-15 Report to Parliament under the Energy Efficiency Act.

Renewable electricity generation capacity in megawatts (MW) across Canada

Favourable five-year trend in MW, as per 2007 baseline of 6,753 MW of installed capacity (excluding large hydro)

Results: 14,301 MW (2013) and 17,236 MW (2014)

Renewable electricity generation capacity increased from 14,301 MW in 2013 to 17,236 MW in 2014 (including small hydro).

Program 2.2: Technology Innovation

Description

Mandate Letter Commitments

  • Canada joined Mission Innovation in November 2015, committing to doubling its federal investments in clean energy innovation in five years.
  • Funding was announced in Budget 2016 to:
    • Demonstrate next generation electric vehicle charging infrastructure ($46.1 million over two years);
    • Demonstrate renewable energy, energy storage and clean transportation technologies to reduce diesel ($82.5 million over two years);
    • Demonstrate energy-efficient steam generation technologies to reduce emissions and water use in unconventional oil and gas operations ($50 million over two years); and
    • Develop, with Statistics Canada and ISED, core metrics for the clean energy sector and its impact ($2.1 million over two years).
  • Budget 2016 also earmarked over $1 billion over four years, starting in 2017-18 to support clean technology including in the natural resource sector.

S&T is key to overcoming challenges confronted by natural resource sectors in pursuing responsible development. Through this Program, NRCan encourages academia, industry and the public sector to research, develop and demonstrate innovative solutions to environmental challenges. This objective is achieved through the generation and dissemination of scientific knowledge, and the development and demonstration of new technologies.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

The Technology Innovation Program is home to Minister Carr’s mandate letter commitment to work with the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, to develop a Clean Technology Strategy to support investment in innovation and the use of clean technologies in Canada’s natural resource sectors (e.g., forestry, fisheries, mining, energy and agriculture).

In 2015-16, the Technology Innovation Program also delivered significant results in scientific research, development and demonstration in energy and mining.

In the area of Clean Energy Science and Technology, 204 projects were completed including clean energy research, development and demonstration projects in collaboration with industry, academia and other federal organizations, to address environmental challenges and GHG emission reductions.

The successful ecoENERGY Innovation Initiative (ecoEII), a $268 million program over 5 years (2011-16), completed its funding period. ecoEII’s objective was to find ways to produce cleaner energy and to use it in more efficient ways. Leveraging more than $250 million from partners to date, the ecoEII program has funded over 300 projects in total, including 70 projects with industry, technology producers, academia and other levels of government through contribution agreements.

ecoENERGY Innovation Initiative 2015-16 Project Highlights

New Standards to Help Improve Automotive Fuel Efficiency

Iron-castings specifications
  • NRCan has developed an iron-castings specification that was adopted as a new standard by the ASTM.
  • The standard covers iron castings used in high-temperature car exhaust manifolds, turbocharger housings, and in power generation plants.
  • Lighter, more heat-resistant products for exhaust and turbocharger parts benefit the fuel efficiency of car engines. This standard assists automotive manufacturers to reduce the cost of iron castings and allows for greater design flexibility

NRCan also completed a number of applied research and development projects focused on materials for energy, including:

  • Innovative materials for use in power generation systems – development of a nano-silicon carbide-nickel composite coating, which was transferred to a Canadian company to improve the safety of current Canada Deuterium Uranium (CANDU) reactors;
  • New technologies/standards to support the effective transport of fossil fuels – development of a new pipeline fracture toughness test method that was approved by the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM); and
  • Innovative materials for greater vehicle efficiency – development of a medium carbon stainless steel for automotive exhaust components to be used by industry partners for new applications.

In the area of Green Mining, NRCan’s research contributes to reducing the environmental footprint of the mining industry by reducing energy consumption – and, as a result, GHG emissions – through cleaner processes for oil sand production and reclamation of contaminated soils

Development of technologies to reduce the impacts of mining and processing produced the following results in 2015-16:

  • Identified different types of biochar – charcoal that is used for agricultural purposes – to determine the feasibility of developing productive agricultural land uses on former mine and mine waste sites;
  • Developed a process for the treatment of oil-sands-produced waste water for recovery and recycle of water in in-situ oil sands;
  • Worked towards improving efficiency in a grinding mill, and reducing energy costs by building and successfully testing the 3D free falling rock sizing sensor prototype in a rock quarry in Bedford, QC, in collaboration with two Canadian companies; and
  • Finalized a small scale demonstration project in collaboration with the Green Mining Initiative Advisory Committee that maps recoverable waste energy in the grinding circuit of rocks.
Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

126,472,078

126,472,078

143,292,764

143,620,407

17,148,329

Budgetary Financial Resources variance mostly explained by Real Property adjustment described in section on Internal Services.

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

616

665

49

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Stakeholders invest in S&T to address environmental challenges

Dollar value of stakeholder investments in S&T to address environmental challenges

5% increase over previous
five years

Results: 11%

The target was achieved with an 11% average growth over the previous five year period.

Program 2.3: Responsible Natural Resource Management

Description

Greater knowledge of environmental risks and environmentally responsible practices help prevent and reduce the environmental impacts of past, present and future natural resource development. The objectives of this Program are to enable government departments, regulatory bodies and industry to assess these impacts, and to develop, monitor and maintain resources or clean up wastes responsibly. These objectives are achieved through the provision of assessments and knowledge rooted in sound science, and through waste management efforts that are undertaken in collaboration with provinces, federal agencies and municipalities.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2015-16, NRCan undertook a range of activities to enable government departments, regulatory bodies and industry to manage environmental risks in natural resource development.

Under the Forest Ecosystems Science and Application program, NRCan:

  • Expanded collaboration on the Canada-U.S. forest biomass map completed in 2014-15 to include Mexico in 2015-16, creating the first North American above-ground forest biomass map; and
  • Collaborated with the tri-national Commission on Environmental Cooperation to apply improved regional scale tools in support of climate change mitigation analyses in the North American forest sector.

In 2015-16, NRCan’s Groundwater Geoscience program:

  • Met its target to map 25 percent of three aquifers in Ontario; and
  • Increased geoscience data and scientific products by 5 percent relative to 2014-15, and released the following products to the public:
    • Six geology maps (Ontario);
    • New data covering 19,441 boreholes in Ontario and 48 water wells in Nova Scotia; and
    • Data for the Milk River Aquifer (Transboundary aquifer Alberta-U.S.).

NRCan also released findings on the effects of hydraulic fracturing on shallow aquifers and induced seismicity to the public (publications available through Geoscan), information that furthered Canada's scientific and technical knowledge of the impacts of unconventional resource development on groundwater and seismicity.

Under the Radioactive Waste Management program, NRCan managed for part of the year the NLLP and the Port Hope Area Initiative (PHAI), and provided oversight for the Low-level Radioactive Waste Management Office (LLRWMO) to address the federal government’s legacy and historic wastes responsibilities.

NRCan’s Nuclear Legacy Liabilities Program ended on September 13, 2015, with the completion of the AECL restructuring process (see Program 1.1 for full details on the restructuring) and the full implementation of the new management model for Canadian Nuclear Laboratories. At the program end date, 80 percent of the decommissioning and radioactive waste management milestones due for completion had been achieved. Canadian Nuclear Laboratories was expecting to complete 90 percent of the 2015-16 program milestones by the end of March 2016. Key results in 2015-16 to reduce Canada's environmental nuclear liabilities include:

  • Repatriation of used highly enriched uranium (HEU) fuel from Canada’s NRX and NRU research reactors in Chalk River, back to the U.S.;
  • Initiation of testing of technologies for treating waste from medical isotope production to stabilize it for future disposal;
  • Awarding of the contract to demolish half of the main nuclear research complex at Whiteshell Laboratories; and
  • Commencement of operations at the Fuel Packaging and Storage facility with the successful retrieval, repackaging and processing of damaged research reactor fuel.

NRCan’s responsibilities related to the Port Hope Area Initiative (PHAI) also ended on September 13, 2015, with the completion of the AECL restructuring process. Both the Port Hope and Port Granby projects managed under the Initiative are targeted to be 100 percent complete by March 31, 2022.

Earth Observation collaboration with the Alberta Energy Regulator

  • Collaborated with the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) to deliver a public report describing how earth observation information and products could be used to improve environmental performance of energy development in the province of Alberta;
  • Supported the AER, in its efforts to prevent harmful bitumen leaks, in using satellite-based techniques developed at NRCan to better model and understand the impacts of oil sands bitumen extraction on the integrity of the resource reservoir;
  • Provided updated and improved satellite–based snow cover and peatland maps, which were used by Alberta Environment and Parks to better identify fire risk and wetland health in the Alberta oil sands region; and
  • Provided recommendations to the AER on new satellite-based tools capable of measuring changes in energy infrastructure in the Alberta oil and gas development areas (which the AER has begun to operationalize).

As of the transfer date, 100 percent of the milestones related to the transfer of Canada’s PHAI responsibilities from NRCan to Atomic Energy of Canada Limited had been completed, including the transfer of all Public Services and Procurement Canada led contracts to Canadian Nuclear Laboratories.

The major construction contract for the Port Granby long-term waste management facility was awarded and the waste water treatment plant was on target to complete active commissioning by year end. Under the Port Hope Project, as of the transfer date, major resurvey contracts for roads and residential properties had also been awarded. The transfer of NLLP and PHAI largely accounts for the financial variance between Planned and Actual Spending.

NRCan’s Earth Observation program provides Earth observation and geospatial data on oil- and gas-concentrated regions such as the North and the Alberta oil sands, to inform identification of baseline conditions and cumulative effects of natural resource development.

In 2015-16, NRCan undertook some specific tasks with the AER, which are detailed in box on the right. The Department also continued its on-going work with stakeholders to advance the use of Earth observation information and methods to measure the cumulative impacts of resource development and climate change. Using NRCan’s satellite-based information and products, the Government of the Northwest Territories created two new environmental indicators in 2015-16 for their annual State of the Environment report: (1) changes in shrub cover, and (2) changes in permafrost-related terrain subsidence.

NRCan also assessed the impact of wildfires and climate change on arctic permafrost using satellite data and modelling. In addition to new remote sensing and geophysical methods developed to assess permafrost terrain changes, new maps of permafrost distribution were also created allowing better understanding of risks to northern infrastructure (e.g., roads, pipelines).

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

193,117,981

193,117,981

410,119,888

121,598,627

(71,519,354)

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

233

244

11

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Federal government implements waste management practices that meet modern standards for safety and environmental protection

Number of contaminated sites where the environmental impacts are reduced

Seven (specifically environmental impacts reduced at Whiteshell Laboratories and Chalk River Laboratories, Glace Bay, Port Granby waste management facility, and Port Hope Welcome waste management facility, Port Hope sites and Northern Transportation Route sites)

Results: seven

NRCan’s NLLP ended on September 13, 2015. Details of the completion of work under this program can be found above in the Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned.

Public and private sectors establish practices to mitigate the environmental impacts to natural resources

Number of public and private sector new or updated policies, regulations or other decision-making tools completed annually

Three annually

Results: four

  1. NRCan’s Canadian Forest Service updated its operational-scale version of Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector (CBM-CFS3) and provided it to stakeholders.
  2. A synthesis of 15 years of scientific information from the Ecosystem Management Emulating Natural Disturbance (EMEND) experiment is nearing completion. EMEND’s research focuses on the effectiveness of ecosystem-based management in the western boreal. Lessons learned from this research are being applied to improve management practices on the surrounding operational landscape, and to inform development of Alberta’s provincial forest policies, especially concerning ecosystem health, productivity, and biodiversity. The EMEND science management model is recognized nationally and internationally as a best practice for implementing integrated science in an adaptive management framework to improve natural resource management.
  3. NRCan and provincial partners contributed to hold the first groundwater knowledge transfer workshop in Montérégie East, Quebec, which is providing decision-making tools to groundwater decision-makers.
  4. NRCan’s Environmental Geoscience Program’s work on background seismicity is mentioned in the Strategic Environmental Assessment of Quebec hydrocarbon report which is one of the province’s decision-making tools in relation to its global energy policy. In addition, scientists from the Environmental Geoscience Program are providing expertise and sharing knowledge to help the Government of the Northwest Territories identify health related issues due to arsenic in the environment after new data was acquired on arsenic in soils, water and sediments in the Yellowknife area.

Program 3.1: Protection for Canadians and Natural Resources

Description

Natural resource development and changes in the environment pose risks to human, natural resource and infrastructure health. The objective of this Program is to enable other government departments, communities, and the private sector to manage these risks and to ensure the appropriate capacity is in place. NRCan achieves this objective by providing regulation, knowledge, tools and services and by fulfilling legislated responsibilities (including explosives and earthquakes).

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2015-16, NRCan implemented new regulations on security screening for individuals with access to high-risk explosives and continued to support the protection of Canadians through collaboration with the Department of National Defence and Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC) through the creation of new armour materials for enhanced protection for military assets and personnel. NRCan also supported industry’s need for qualified Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) technicians, who are responsible for inspection of infrastructure and other components critical to public safety, by maintaining 17,533 NDT certifications.

Through its research, NRCan also contributed to the preparedness against natural hazards and risk mitigation of natural disasters in Canada. NRCan program experts published an earthquake risk assessment for the District of North Vancouver and released a seismic hazard assessment and marine geology and geomorphology maps for BC's North Coast in support of a world-class tanker safety regime.

In the area of Forest Disturbances Science and Applications, NRCan:

  • Provided forest managers with indicators and a ready-to-use, science-based adaptation toolkit for forest change tracking and adaptation;
  • Supported an early intervention strategy for spruce budworm, and provided scientific advice to slow the spread of mountain pine beetle; and
  • Supported the development of a Canadian Wildland Fire Preparedness and Response Plan under the direction of the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers.
Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16

Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

58,672,639

58,672,639

73,440,885

73,709,947

15,037,308

Budgetary Financial Resources variance mostly explained by Real Property adjustment described in section on Internal Services.

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

456

474

18

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

Governments, communities and the private sector manage risks or opportunities to natural resources, infrastructure, and human health

Number of active collaborations with the public and private sector that manage risks or opportunities to human population, natural resources and infrastructure health

Six collaboration agreements

Results: six

Maintained existing networks through delivery of Canada’s Adaptation Platform, an NRCan led initiative that brings together governments, national industry, professional, and not-for-profit organizations to collaborate on adaptation priorities. This included, for example, a new collaborative initiative with Chartered Professional Accountants to help prepare their membership of 190,000+ to address climate change adaptation in their work.

New collaboration agreements were also established with provinces, territories and other federal departments to support enhanced forest disturbance management across Canada. For example, a collaborative project with the Northwest Territories provided aerial survey training to forest health specialists. A collaborative agreement was also established with Ontario to develop tools for the early detection and management of emerald ash borer, which is an exotic pest that is killing ash trees in urban areas of southern Ontario and Quebec.

The Ontario Centre for Climate Adaptation Research, Ouranos (a Consortium in Quebec) and NRCan collaborated to prepare for a national conference in early 2016 (Adaptation Canada 2016) to showcase results of the federal adaptation programming and provide the first national networking opportunity in ten years.

 

Number of risk assessments (climate change, hazards, other), policies, standards or guidelines developed using NRCan information or services

Five annually

Results: eight

NRCan expertise was used to develop three new risk assessments with respect to climate change adaptation. Delivered through the Adaptation Platform, these included a risk assessment for the oil and gas sector of Northeastern British Columbia, and a risk and opportunity assessment of climate change on British Columbia electricity demand.

NRCan geohazard knowledge products contributed to five standards and guidelines developed by public and private sector organizations. Most notably, NRCAN developed seismic hazard models that were used to inform the National Research Council Canada’s 2015-2020 update of National Building Code of Canada.

Program 3.2: Landmass Information

United Nations Convention
on the Law of the Sea

Ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in 2003 requires Canada to delineate the outer limits of its extended continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles and to submit this information to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf. International recognition of its new offshore boundaries will give Canada jurisdiction over the natural resources on the seabed and in the subsoil.

In 2015, NRCan’s UNCLOS program conducted a 42-day survey in Amundsen Basin and the Lomonosov Ridge, mapping several critical points and acquiring 500 km of geophysical data, providing key scientific evidence for Canada.

The UNCLOS program also began planning the 2016 expedition in collaboration with the Swedish Polar Research Secretariat, securing the use of the Swedish icebreaker Oden to provide support to the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Louis S. St-Laurent during the 2016 survey. Related bilateral agreements also provide a framework for scientific collaboration between Canada and Sweden during the upcoming survey, allowing scientists from both countries to undertake joint research to improve our knowledge of the Arctic Ocean.

Description

Public, academic and private sectors as well as Canadians rely on up-to-date, comprehensive and accessible landmass information to make sound socio-economic and environmental decisions. This Program provides open access to Canada’s fundamental geomatics framework and information system, including accurate three-dimensional positioning, high-resolution satellite imagery and other remote sensing products, legal (boundary) surveys, mapping and other analysis applications. In addition, it delivers logistics support in the North and regulatory oversight for a robust property system framework on Canada Lands.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2015-16, NRCan provided successful satellite reception service for the Canadian Space Agency’s (CSA) RADARSAT-2, with service available to key government and private sector clients 99.8 percent of the time. RADARSAT-2 transmits data on sea ice mapping and ship routing, iceberg detection, agricultural crop monitoring, marine surveillance for ship and pollution detection, terrestrial defence surveillance and target identification, geological mapping, mine monitoring, and land use, wetlands and topographic mapping.

NRCan also optimized federal satellite infrastructure by integrating antenna capabilities, thus avoiding an additional $10 million in expenditures across federal departments. Through continued improvements to storage and data archiving technologies, NRCan is ensuring that Canada will be in a position to make use of future nationally-significant data streams and decades of archived satellite imagery from all sources towards understanding Canada’s changing landmass. This includes planning for the upcoming RADARSAT Constellation Mission, led by CSA and expected to launch in 2018, which will be a three-satellite configuration to provide greater coverage of Canada’s landscape to facilitate maritime surveillance, disaster management and ecosystem monitoring.

NRCan continues to lead the GeoBase initiative, a collaboration of federal, provincial and territorial partners to ensure public access to nationally-significant data streams about Canada’s changing landmass, including geodetics (land surveys), geographical names, geopolitical boundaries, federal electoral districts, road and railway networks, etc. In 2015-16, updates were made to data layers of the Canadian Geographical Names Data Base, National Road Network, National Railway Network, and National Hydrographic Network. These models serve as key building blocks to integrate economic and social data that help drive open and big data.

Under the Canada’s Legal Boundaries program, NRCan completed International Boundary Maintenance work along portions of the Yukon-Alaska, British Columbia-Washington and Quebec-New York/Vermont/Maine boundaries. The Department also published 132 research reports and 45 land descriptions that were recorded in the Canada Lands Survey Records in support of First Nation Land Management. NRCan continued transitioning to electronic approvals and official registration of legal survey plans for the Canada Lands Survey System (expected completion by March 2018).

NRCan completed the first phase of the International Great Lake Datum (IGLD) GPS survey work in collaboration with the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, ECCC and the Canadian Hydrographic Service. This internationally-coordinated vertical datum is the reference system by which Great Lakes and St-Lawrence River Basin water levels are measured to ensure safe navigation, and compliance with international treaties and regulation. The 2015 survey is the first phase of the update to the 1985 IGLD datum, which requires a refresh every 25 to 30 years due to movement of the earth's crust.

NRCan’s Polar Continental Shelf Program (PCSP) provided logistics support to 168 science and operations projects, 8 Canadian Armed Forces Arctic Training Centre projects and 12 Search and Rescue activities. The PCSP also provided specialized field equipment support to hundreds of projects working across the Canadian landmass, more than 10,500 person nights of accommodation at its facility in Resolute and coordinated more than 5,077 hours of flying on chartered aircraft. To maximize efficiencies, the PCSP partners with major science programs and other federal government departments and agencies to provide whole-of-government approach to meet Government of Canada objectives. Work on PCSP and UNCLOS largely account for the financial and human resources variances between Planned and Actual Spending.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

71,155,143

71,155,143

83,529,098

74,110,670

2,955,527

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

420

383

(37)

Performance Results

Expected Results

Performance Indicators

Targets

Actual Results

PCSP clients receive cost-effective logistics support needed to conduct field work safely in Canada’s Arctic and Sub-arctic regions

Level of client satisfaction with mix, quality and cost of support received

85% of clients are either satisfied or very satisfied

Results: 90%

Through a client satisfaction questionnaire administered in 2015-16, 90% of respondents indicated they were either satisfied or very satisfied with the mix and quality of logistics support provided by the PCSP.

Public, private sector and academia use accurate, Government of Canada geo-information for decision-making

Number of public sector, private sector or academic organizations using accurate geo-information for decision-making

Ten federal departments or agencies, five private sector companies and three academic organizations

Results: Achieved

Public, private sector, governments or academic organizations are using NRCan’s Earth Observation product archives to produce information products using accurate geo-information for decision-making.

Geospatial data products (i.e. data sets, maps) represent more than 5 million downloads annually from more than 2,300 requests from the public, private sector, governments, NGOs and academic organizations. There is an increase of more than 50% in use of the recent Clip-Zip-Ship tool for custom data coverage delivery.

In 2015-16, users of NRCan's National Earth Observation Data Framework Catalogue included:

  • 27 federal government organizations;
  • 12 provincial or territorial organizations;
  • 40 academic organizations; and
  • 2,253 general users (including general public and representatives of private organizations)

 

Pieces of evidence identifying that the Canada Lands Survey System activities are meeting stakeholder needs

One piece each from First Nations, other government departments and industry for the Canada Lands Survey System


One piece from an international boundary stakeholder

Evidence collected for 2015-16 indicates that stakeholder needs were met and benefits from modernization of the Canada Lands Survey System were realized by stakeholders.

Stakeholders identified areas for improvement including increased alignment with the Yukon Land Titles System.

Internal Services

Description

Internal services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. Internal services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization, and not those provided to a specific program. The groups of activities are Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; and Acquisition Services.

Program Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Open Government and Science Computing

In 2015-16, NRCan’s Science and Computing Task Team assessed specific computing needs required to improve science computing capabilities, such as identifying opportunities for the integration of requirements from the Open Government Directive into NRCan’s S&T policies and reporting. NRCan's Open Government Steering Committee is finalizing governance and activities to be included in the Open Government Implementation Plan (OGIP), which will be finalized in 2016-17.

Science Promotion Strategy

NRCan undertook proactive regional and national media outreach, including interviews with scientists, resulting in 380 stories across 225 media outlets. The Department also expanded its use of social media including media-friendly videos on YouTube and partnered with The Daily Planet, The Weather Network and Canadian Geographic to promote NRCan science.

Government of Canada Web Renewal

To prepare for web renewal, NRCan reviewed and optimized web content resulting in a reduction from 75,000 to 9,000 web pages. The Department also established new governance including a working-level web committee and an executive-level digital communications oversight committee and engaged the leads of various Canada.ca themes pertinent to NRCan.

Modernizing IT Infrastructure

NRCan made progress in modernizing its IT Infrastructure by migrating applications to Shared Services Canada Enterprise Data Centres and retiring 46 of 87 applications. The NRCan Cyber Security Action Plan is currently in Phase 2. This initiative protects NRCan's assets against Cyber Threats, and will improve how the Department responds to cyber-level incidents. The Shared Services Cost Effective Telephony Initiative is fully implemented and the Department has fully migrated to Legacy mailboxes in September 2015, completing Phase 1 of the Email Transformation Initiative.

Government-Wide Initiatives

During NRCan's first full year of implementation of government-wide initiatives such as the Performance Management program for employees, GCDOCS, and pay system renewal, the Department focused on change management and improving performance.

Strong focus was also placed on increasing management capacity to hold effective performance and career conversations in tandem with use of the new Public Service Performance Measurement application and rating scales. This included peer coaching circles, targeted performance management clinics and tools to increase consistency of performance objectives.

GCDOCS was migrated to the end state data centre and an approach to migrate electronic information of business value to GCDOCS in 2016-17 has been developed.

Emergency Procedures and Physical Security

NRCan undertook several initiatives in 2015-16 to enhance physical security to better protect its employees and assets. Work is underway to conduct risk assessments on all NRCan facilities. The Department has successfully developed a policy framework and implementation plan for the roll-out of a departmental Occupational Health and Safety Management System (OHSMS). The OHSMS will standardize NRCan’s Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) practices and work towards improved OHS performance. Furthermore, the Department has begun analysis to prepare for the replacement of a key physical security system. The departmental Building Emergency Organization has worked with regional locations to analyze and update the building emergency and evacuation plans.

Booth Street Complex Project

In 2015-16, the Department made significant progress re-accommodating Booth Street Complex (BSC) staff and programs out of 615 Booth St., and advancing our re-accommodation strategy for all BSC custodial buildings and the Finance Annex at Tunney's Pasture. The department was also successful in selling its lands and buildings that comprise the North-West Quadrant of the BSC to Canada Lands Corporation in October 2015.

Federal Infrastructure Initiative

Under the 2014 Federal Infrastructure Initiative, NRCan successfully completed close to $40 million in major repairs and upgrades of the Department’s laboratories and research facilities in 15 locations across Canada, including:

  • Repairs and upgrades to the base building infrastructure in NRCan's research facilities such as roofs, lighting, heat and air handling systems, security and fire suppression system and electrical distribution; and
  • Laboratory upgrades to support NRCan's science research and energy efficiency and carbon reduction investments.

Efforts to reflect real property expenditures in 2015-16 against the program the property supported, where practical, resulted in a significant amount of expenditures planned in Internal Services being transferred to various programs, which, offset by some Federal Infrastructure Initiative expenses being recorded in Internal Services, largely explains the financial variance.

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy

In addition to the initiatives outlined above, NRCan is a participant in the 2013-16 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS) and contributes to the Theme IV (Greening Government Operations) targets through the internal services program. In 2015-16, the Department has:

  • Further reduced the departmental GHG emissions from its buildings and fleet;
  • Achieved an industry-recognized level of high environmental performance in Government of Canada real property projects and operations;
  • Acted in accordance with the Federal Policy on Green Procurement. This includes: green procurement training taken by functional specialists, now available for managers, and now mandatory for new Acquisition Card holders. It also includes developing, and monitoring progress against, specific commodity targets (SMART targets below);
  • Improved the sustainability of its workplace by integrating environmental considerations into corporate policies, processes and practices; and
  • Established SMART targets to reduce the environmental impact of goods/services acquired for its clients. This includes SMART targets for acquiring ‘green’ copy paper, ‘green’ furniture, as well as the reduction of GHG emissions resulting from business-related travel.

Additional details regarding NRCan’s contribution to the 2013-16 FSDS can be found in the Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy Supplementary Information Table.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2015–16
Main Estimates

2015–16
Planned Spending

2015–16
Total Authorities
Available for Use

2015–16
Actual Spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

142,789,148

142,789,148

147,374,207

125,564,854

(17,224,294)

Human Resources (FTEs)

2015–16
Planned

2015–16
Actual

2015–16
Difference
(actual minus planned)

985

940

(45)