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Only top-level descriptions British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (1979-1986) British Columbia. Ministry of Environment and Parks
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Administrative records

  • GR-3830
  • Series
  • 1984-2009

The series contains miscellaneous administrative records from the Ministry of Environment (2005) and its predecessors.
The records document the history, mission and strategic priorities of the ministry and its branches as well as its organizational structures over the years. This includes the reorganization of the Planning and Assessment Branch. Furthermore, as part of a submission to the Enquiry B.C referral service, the records also contain presentations introducing the work of the ministry.

Some of the records in this series pertain to committees or ministerial meetings that deal directly with some sort of aspect of administration. For example, the Integrated Management Committee files located in this series show how the committee was formed and lay out its administrative organization. These records are classified under ARCS 102-20 Administration - Ministry meetings.

Other records in the series include those detailing the meetings between program and regional directors for all programs supported by the Ministry of Environment. These records include agenda items, minutes, summaries of goals and objectives and a review of activities.

The series also contains a Policy Log that assembles a list of memos relating to new policies put in place across the ministry and its branches. A collection of communications plans relates to how the ministry informed staff, the public and special interests groups about the new Bill 50 (Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act). The records include memos from FOI coordinators as well as correspondence and information kits meant to summarize changes to information requests.

The series include three 'transition resources books' which were created for directors in charge of announcing the new divisional and branch/regional structure phases to their employees. This restructuring was announced by the ministry in 1996. The briefing books include updated organizational charts, functions, logistics and action plans, employee letter templates, employee lists and minutes from conference calls with the Deputy Minister and meetings with the Senior Management Committee. Several more organizational charts, histories and agreements are included that focus on the transfer of functions of the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks (MELP) to either the Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection, the Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management and the Ministry of Fisheries. As the Resource Inventory Branch and Aquatic Information Branch were transferred from MELP to the Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management, several early documents pertaining to the management of Pacific salmon are included in this series which includes working group files, stock assessments, and discussion papers. This also includes some legal files related to First Nations fishing rights.

A few administrative records stemming from the Environmental Protection Office are also included in this series. Files classified under ARCS 747 - Firearms includes a list of requests to authorize ministry employees to carry and use firearms as part of their work. These requests include the name of the employee, the purposes of their firearm (e.g. personal safety while working in bear country, collection of wildlife specimens, destroy injured wildlife, wilderness survival, scare wildlife, immobilization), description of the firearm (e.g. make/model), authorization signatures and on occasions, a short description written by the application regarding their experience and training in handling firearms. The applications are accompanied by the written policy on firearms.

Additionally, there are Ombudsman investigations files dealing with a dispute for fines issued under the Waste Management Act.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

Energy projects review case files

  • GR-3852
  • Series
  • 1981-2006

This series contains records relating to assessing the environmental, economic, social, cultural, heritage and health impacts of energy projects under the Environmental Assessment Act. These records were created and kept by the Environment Assessment Office (EAO) that is involved in the entire process, providing advice and recommendations to the proponent.

The records in this series cover initial enquiries, reviewable and non-reviewable project enquiries. A non-reviewable project means that the proposed project may proceed without an environmental review. A project is determined to be non-reviewable if it does not meet or exceed the thresholds defined in the Reviewable Projects Regulation (B.C. Reg. 370/2002). Also, according to the Act (s. 10(1)(b)), a project which meets or exceeds these thresholds may also be deemed non-reviewable at the executive director’s discretion. Non-reviewable projects may also become reviewable if the proponent voluntarily asks for an environmental assessment (i.e., “opts in”) and the executive director agrees (s. 7) or if the minister deems the project to be reviewable.

All other projects which meet or exceed the thresholds are reviewable. For reviewable projects, terms of reference are created by the proponent, in consultation with the review agencies, in order to ensure that the application will contain the necessary information. Reports and studies are typically created by the proponent in order to fulfil the requirements of the Terms of Reference, but they may also be created by any other involved party at any stage in the review process. The application for an Environmental Assessment Certificate (EAC) is then submitted by the proponent and once the application meets the EAO’s standards, the formal review process begins. Application review includes: review by government agencies, First Nations, and the public; First Nation and public consultation; a formal public comment period; and opportunities for the proponent to respond to issues raised.

After the application review is complete, EAO staff prepare an Assessment Report for the minister, which documents the findings of the environmental assessment, including the issues raised in relation to the project and how these issues have been or could be addressed. The environmental assessment process concludes when a) The minister approves the EAC and the project proceeds, b) The minister rejects the project, c) The minister decides that no assessment is required, or d) The proponent withdraws the project. An EAC (previously known as a Project Approval Certificate [PAC]) may contain conditions to ensure that necessary mitigative and compensatory measures are in place to prevent or reduce any adverse effects of the project.

The records in this series document the business case for proposed projects, provide initial information to determine if projects meet the reviewable threshold or not, and documents the EAO ruling on whether or not the project is reviewable. Types of records that can be found in this series are certificates of public convenience and necessity, lists of options, applications for project approval certificates, memorandum, letters of intent for cooperation agreements (such as between a First Nations group and the proponent), correspondence, information notes, executive summaries of decisions, project descriptions, lists of environmental concerns (issue summaries), minutes of information presentation meetings, maps of proposed sites and a diverse range of reports and studies. Types of projects that appear in this series include natural gas pipelines, wind turbines, substation redevelopments, electric transmission systems, coal powered plants, hydroelectricity dams and others.

The records from accession 95-4252 and 95-5291 are classified under the Environmental Assessment Operational Records Classification System (Schedule 132564) and cover the following primary number:
30050: reviewable enquiries and projects – energy
And the following secondary numbers:
-05: non-reviewable energy project enquiries
-40: pre-application reviewable enquiry case files

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Environmental emergency records

  • GR-3828
  • Series
  • 1985-1993

The series contains the records from the Environmental Emergency Services Branch (EESB) of the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks and its predecessors. The records relate to the province’s preparedness and responses to environmental emergencies, such as marine oil spills, floods, dam failures, and landslides. The records also cover planning for future management of such emergencies.
Within the records are several reviews, reports and evaluations. One such review discusses the Anderson Report and briefs the Premier on oil transportation and oil spills. It provides an action plan for the report’s recommendations for the provincial cabinet to adopt. There are also reports reviewing and evaluating the Ministry’s response activities during major oil spills including Sooke/Alaska oil spill 1989, Exxon Valdez oil spill 1989 and Nestucca oil spill 1988. Additionally, there is a final report produced by the United States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force as well as an EESB service plan and Year End Review (1991-1992) detailing major activities and accomplishments.

The series also contains a collection of contingency plans for environmental emergencies submitted by different corporations and government services. These include plans for dealing with disasters caused by the mishandling of dangerous goods, such as oil, gas, sour wells, ammonia etc.

Finally, a portion of the records relate to litigation by the province against perpetrators of oil spills for the environmental damage caused. The records include information about the the Rubin Lotus oil spill settlement but are mainly about the Nestucca Barge oil spill lawsuit against Sause Bros. of the United States. The records contain details of the valuation of natural resource damages as well as the out-of-court settlement from which the Province of British Columbia, Canada and the Nuu-cha-nulth Tribal Council received damages. There is also information about the resulting Trust Fund that was established to administer the money awarded through the settlement.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

Ministry of Environment executive records

  • GR-4189
  • Series
  • 1977-1991

This series consists of executive records created by the Ministry of Environment, and its successor, the Ministry of Environment and Parks, from 1978-1991.

The records relate to all functions of the Ministry of Environment. This includes, but is not limited to, the creation and management of Provincial Parks, such as Strathcona; mining in parks; hunting; trapping and traplines; guide outfitters; fishing; Indigenous hunting and land rights; wildlife management, including wolf control; game farming; fish farms and aquaculture; water rights and management; Ministry centralization and reorganization; the privatization of Ministry functions, including the Environmental Lab; conservation and habitat management; water rights and water licences; flood prevention and mitigation; the creation and management of dams and dykes; land use; pollution, including air, chemical, solid waste and sewage; waste management, including landfills and sewage systems; coal mining; pesticides and herbicides; conservation officers, including enforcement and prosecutions; the drafting of legislation and orders-in-council; flood claims, control and prevention; and surveys and mapping.

Records include correspondence from the public and within government, briefing notes, meeting minutes, minister's speeches, Cabinet submissions, Treasury Board submissions, reports, agreements, legislation, variance orders, brochures, agreements, policies, procedures, maps and photos.

The records were created by the following executive:

Charles Stephen Rogers, Minister, 1979-1983
Anthony Julius Brummett, Minister, 1983-1985
Forbes Charles Austin Pelton, Minister, 1985-1986
Charles Stephen Rogers, Minister, 1986-1987
William Bruce Stracham, Minister, 1987-1989

Earle D Anthony, Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) Regional Operations, 1979-1981
Earle D Anthony, ADM Environmental Management, 1982-1987
Earle D Anthony, ADM Programs, 1987-1988
Earle D Anthony, Acting DM, 1988
Richard L Dalon, Deputy Minister, 1988-[1990]
Ben E Marr, Deputy Minister, 1974-1987
Allan Murray, ADM Conservation, 1978-1979
Allan Murray, ADM Environmental Management, 1980-1982
Allan Murray, ADM Regional Operations, 1983-1985
GE Simmons, ADM, Environmental Management, 1979-1981
WN Venables, ADM Environmental Protection, 1979
WN Venables, ADM Assessment and Planning, 1980-1984

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (1979-1986)

Records relating to the Women’s Action Plan

  • GR-3829
  • Series
  • 1983-1987

The series contains records created and accumulated by the Ministry of Environment and Parks and its predecessors related to women’s programs in government. These records were created as part of an initiative by the Canadian federal government to reflect on the status of women and by the BC government to reflect on opportunities available to female public servants during the United Nations Decade of the Woman (1975-1985). As such, the provincial government asked each ministry to create a Plan of Action for women working in their ministry that would encourage training, development, career planning and awareness of women’s working conditions. The objective was to encourage women to apply for management or other high-level positions within the public service. This series contains records relating to the creation of the Ministry of Environment Women’s Action Plan. There are also a small number of Action Plan documents from other ministries that appear to have been used as reference by the Ministry of Environment.

These records include minutes, discussions, memos, reports and correspondence from the Women’s Advisory Committee and the Task Force on Women in the Ministry of Environment who were tasked with making recommendations and reporting on achievements. Highlights include the establishment of the Women’s Resource Library, discussions on work schedule alternatives, ideas for programs and development opportunities, resources regarding abuse, workshops, maternity leaves and a mentorship program.

The records also contain some publications relating to the issue, including several BC Women’s Programs Newsletters, Juggling a Family and a Job (1983) and Women in British Columbia: a Plan for Progress (1986).

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment and Parks

Reference maps

  • GR-3813
  • Series
  • 1932-1995

The series contains a collection of maps used as reference in office of the Integrated Land Management Bureau and its predecessors from various ministries responsible for lands. These particular maps were transferred from the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, Lower Mainland office in Surrey, B.C. The maps were produced by the surveys and mapping branch of the Ministry or its predecessors and cover a variety of areas in British Columbia.
The maps detail many features including roads, trails, railways, powerlines, reserved lands, surveyed lands, boundaries, campgrounds, mines, historic monuments, lighthouses, survey control stations, Forest Service lookouts, communications towers, customs offices, airports and airstrips, heliports, seaplane landings, buildings, elevations, dykes, contour swamp/marsh, intermittent lake/seasonal inundation, mud, sand, gravel, glaciers and icefields. Some maps also detail telephone lines, wells, falls, rapids, dams, cliffs, mile posts, orchards and even land lots.
The dates the maps were published do not necessarily coincide with when the data was collected to create those maps. Usually this information is present in the publication information at the bottom or top of each map. The maps would have held important reference information to Ministry workers and were probably consulted frequently. Several maps have annotations marking plots of land, new features, and other notes. Many of the maps are part of composites which can be placed next to each other to create larger maps. It is for this reason that it is believed that some duplications of the maps in this series exist. Most of the maps are topographical; however there are a few maps detailing lots and land registration as well as a few water source maps from the Water Management Division. Maps are printed on paper except for a few which are on Mylar. Maps do not appear to be arranged in any discernable order.

Maps of the following cities and areas are included in this series:
Alert Bay (1956, 1965, 1976)
Ashcroft (1966, 1975)
Boston Bar (1957)
Bowen Island
Bridge River (1970, 1979)
Bute Inlet (1960, 1970, 1991)
Buttle Lake (1977)
Campbell River (1981)
Cheakamus River (1969)
Chilliwack (1959)
Chilliwack Lake (1983, 1986, 1995)
Comox (1956)
Elko (1962)
Haslam Lake (1967)
Hope (1957, 1968)
Kamloops (1979,
Kamloops Lake (1979, 1995)
Kennedy Lake (1975)
Langley (1967, 1978, 1979)
Lardeau (1973)
Lillooet River (1979
Lytton (1968, 1979)
Manning Park (1960)
Merritt (1980)
Mount Urquhart (1955, 1960)
Mount Waddington (1968)
Nootka Sound (1960)
Pemberton (1951, 1972)
Pitt River (1973)
Port Alberni (1976)
Princeton (1980, 1995)
Revelstoke (1932)
Scuzzy Mountain (1956)
Shuswap Lake (1968)
Skagit (1960)
Spuzzum (1957, 1967)
Squamish (1952, 1972, 1982)
Sugar Lake (1956)
Texada Island (1950)
Toba Inlet (1979)
Tulameen (1958, 1978, 1986, 1995)
Vancouver (1959, 1975)
Victoria (1968)
Whistler (1993)
Yale (1966, 1976, 1979, 1995)

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

Treasury board submissions

  • GR-3868
  • Series
  • 1984-1990

This series contains various submissions from the Ministry of Environment and Parks and its predecessors. Records are predominantly from the 1980s and record various offices of the ministry asking the Minister to release funds for various projects and contract work (ministerial submissions). There are also Treasury Board submissions and Deputy Minister submissions which were submitted to the Deputy Minister asking for permission to call for tenders. Copies of approvals were received by the submitting ministry from the Ministry of Finance, copies of which are also found in this series.

The records also contain two large computer print-outs of year-end invoice reports which are labeled and presumably originate from the Ministry of Regional Development.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment and Parks

Water licence litigation files

  • GR-3814
  • Series
  • 1985-2001

The series contains the records related to major lawsuits against the Province of British Columbia and/or Canada by water export companies after the latter were refused water licenses for the bulk export of fresh water from Tzela Creek, Toba Inlet to international markets via marine tankers. The companies involved include Snowcap Waters Ltd., Sun Belt Water Inc. and Aquasource Ltd. who sought compensation for lost business opportunities.

The records provide background information to the suits, copies of documents used as evidence including correspondence, reports, environmental assessments, water licence applications, letters of concern from First Nations solicitors, copies of news articles and press coverage, letters from the public, copies of permits, project summaries and court documents.

These records originate from the offices of the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks (Water Stewardship Division).

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks