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British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks Environmental protection--British Columbia
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Conservation Officer Service major investigation case files

  • GR-3996
  • Series
  • 1992 - 2007

The series consists of the major investigation case files of the Conservation Officer Service. These records document the major investigative work of Conservation Officers, who are Special Provincial Constables under the Police Act (RSBC 1996, c. 367) in BC. They are trained and authorized to investigate complaints and incidents and to charge offenders. The records relate to investigating and enforcing suspected cases of noncompliance with the following federal acts and related regulations, which currently fall under the Conservation Officer Service (COS) mandate: Canada Shipping Act, 2001 (SC 2001, c. 26), Criminal Code (RSC 1985, c. C-46), Fisheries Act (RSC 1985, c. F-14), Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 (SC 1994, c. 22), Species at Risk Act (SC 2002, c. 29), Wild Animal and Plant Protection and Regulation of International and Interprovincial Trade Act (SC 1992, c. 52) and the following provincial acts and related regulations: Creston Valley Wildlife Act (RSBC 1996, c. 84), Dike Maintenance Act (RSBC 1996, c. 95), Ecological Reserve Act (RSBC 1996, c.103), Environmental Assessment Act (SBC 2002, c. 43), Environmental Management Act (SBC 2003, c. 53), Firearm Act (RSBC 1996, c. 145), Fish Inspection Act (RSBC 1996, c. 148), Fisheries Act (RSBC 1996, c. 149), Forest Act (RSBC 1996, c. 157), Forest and Range Practices Act (SBC 2002, c. 69), Forest Practices Code of British Columbia Act (RSBC 1996, c. 159), Integrated Pest Management Act (SBC 2003, c. 58), Land Act (RSBC 1996, c. 245), Liquor Control and Licensing Act (RSBC 1996, c. 267), Motor Vehicle Act (RSBC 1996, c. 318), Offence Act (RSBC 1996, c. 338), Off-Road Vehicle Act (SBC 2014, c. 5), Park Act (RSBC 1996, c. 344), Transport of Dangerous Goods Act (RSBC 1996, c. 458), Riparian Areas Protection Act (SBC 1997, c. 21), Trespass Act (RSBC 1996, c. 462), Water Protection Act (RSBC 1996, c. 484), Water Users' Communities Act (RSBC 1996, c. 483), portions of the Wildfire Act (SBC 2004, c. 31), and the Wildlife Act (RSBC 1996, c. 488). Major cases are serious in nature and address complex issues such as trafficking animal parts, big-game poaching, illegal fishing or guiding, or selling animals for human consumption that are procured illegally. These case are high profile, and may draw intense media and political attention. They include those that: are multi-jurisdictional and involve other levels of government and/or other jurisdictions; may involve elements of organized crime, and violations that fall outside the mandate of the COS; require specialized investigation techniques such as surveillance, canvassing, covert operations, and the use of Judicial Applications such as search warrants, tracking warrants, and Part 6 warrants; require the systematic collection, organization, and evaluation of large amounts of information and electronic data; and relate to serious forest crimes including arson, mischief, fraud and theft of natural resources. These records were created by the Conservation Officer Service part of the Enforcement program of the Ministry of the Environment and its predecessors, 1992-2007.

Major investigation case files are organized by case number, and for special investigations, by project name. A major case includes a variety of record types such as routing sheets, investigation documents, notes, dedicated major case notebooks, court documents (e.g., search warrants, subpoenas, arrest warrants and Crown Counsel disclosure packages, reports (e.g., final, subject, exhibit, expert, briefing, etc.), enforcement action records (e.g., tickets, warnings and orders), photographs, audio-visual records, ledgers, logs, statements, plans, approvals, correspondence, and supporting documentation)). These records are classified as major investigation cases (31010-40) under the Conservation Officer Service ORCS, 2017.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Conservation Officer Service policy records

  • GR-4004
  • Series
  • 1980-2012

This series consists of policy records developed by the Conservation Officer Service to support its core operational functions and activities: compliance and enforcement of federal and provincial natural resource law and human wildlife conflict management. The records were created by the Conservation Officer Service, part of the Enforcement program of the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors under the Environmental Management Act (SBC 2003, c. 53) between 1980-2012. They consist of final/approved policies, procedures, standards, and guidelines relating to environmental protection, fish and wildlife management, and public safety in the province of BC.
The records are arranged by category, then by policy name/section. They consist of correspondence, memoranda, final policy documents, reports, copies of occurrence reports, investigations, and copies of legislation. These records are classified as final policy documents (31000-00) under the Conservation Officer Service ORCS (schedule 201311), 2017. They are also assigned an internal filing code.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Conservation officer service final reports, statistics and reviews

  • GR-4007
  • Series
  • 1984 - 2010

The series consists of records relating to original research, analysis, and reporting on compliance, enforcement, and human-wildlife conflict management activities performed by the Conservation Officer Service, as established under the Environmental Management Act (SBC 2003, c. 53). Some of the topics covered include bears and orphaned bear cubs, no shooting areas, and ear tags for problem animals such a cougars and black and grizzly bears. The records document the effectiveness of specific control method techniques and the types and severity of human-wildlife conflicts in BC. They were created by the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors between 1984 and 2010.
The records are arranged by subject. They include reports, correspondence, questionnaires, procedure manuals, meeting materials, memoranda, and presentations. The records are classified as final reports, statistics, and reviews (31000-10) under the Conservation Officer Services ORCS (201311), 2017. They are also assigned an internal file code.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Ministry of Environment executive records and briefing notes

  • GR-3886
  • Series
  • 1994-2005

This series consists of a variety of executive records, including, briefing notes, decision notes, ministry Orders in Council, ministerial orders and Cabinet submissions from 1998-2005. The records were created by the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors, the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks, and the Ministry of Water, Lands and Air Protection. The records were created by several offices for the information or decision of the Minister, Deputy Minister, the Assistant Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection, Assistant Deputy Minister of the Enforcement Programs, and other executive members of the ministries.

Records may address any subject related to the mandate of the ministries. The records are arranged by accession number, then by file code, then chronologically by date.

Accession 95-5839 contains briefing notes from the Parks Division. Briefing notes in yearly files are arranged by District, then month and day. The topics of the briefs concern the creation and development of new parks and conservations areas; the deletion, removal or transfer of park lands; the construction of infrastructure in parks including roads and powerlines; park use permits and fees; the changing uses of park lands for recreation; issues surrounding mining and logging in and around park lands; response to pine beetle infestations; safety concerns and accidents involving park visitors; changes to legislation; First Nations treaty negotiations regarding park land; as well as approval and development of park Master Plans and Management Plans.

Accession 95-7183 contains briefing notes from the Environmental Protection Division. The topics of the briefs concern waste control and management, environmental health, climate change, pollution prevention, recycling and waste disposal programs, among other related topics.

Accession 96-0944 contains briefing notes from the Enforcement program. The topics of these records mainly concern enforcement services regarding non-compliance with environmental standards, the Conservation Officer Service (including their training and firearms safety), contaminated sites, wildlife, and habitat protection as it relates to environmental laws.

Accession 95-8904 contains executive records from the Deputy Ministers Office. Records include briefing notes, decision notes, ministry Orders in Council (OICs), ministerial orders, Cabinet submissions, correspondence, and related reference material. Subjects and issues addressed may cover all programs and divisions of the ministry. Records may be addressed specifically to the Deputy Minister for their signature or approval, or they may be informational reference copies from the Minister of other Executives. Some of the records may be duplicated in other accessions.

Records in this series are classified under ARCS numbers 135-35, 135-60, 201-40 and 280-20.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

Conservation Officer Service wildlife attack final reports

  • GR-4005
  • Series
  • 1991-2012

The series consists of final reports summarizing wildlife attacks on humans created by the Conservation Officer Service, part of the Enforcement program of the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors under the Environmental Management Act (SBC 2003, c. 53) between 1991--2012. The final reports cover the response and related activities of the Conservation Officer Service (COS) to human-wildlife conflicts that pose a threat to public safety (e.g., wildlife attacks, repeated dangerous wildlife encounters at or near public locations, situations where dangerous wildlife has become habituated or food conditioned and now represents a risk to public safety, and livestock-large predator conflicts) in BC. COS also responds to certain cases of injured or dead wildlife (e.g., large carnivores or ungulates). The records document the investigation and outcome of wildlife attacks that threaten human safety and may result in human fatality or serious injury. They illustrate the evolution of wildlife attack investigative technique, causes of wildlife attacks, and methods used to dispatch wildlife. They may be used to inform wildlife conflict reduction strategies, policies and procedures, and educational materials developed by COS.

The records are arranged by geographic area and type of animal attack. They consist of memoranda and reports containing copies of photos, news clippings, memoranda, correspondence, case summaries, and exhibit materials. The records are classified by an internal filing code and ORCS classification 31040-14 (wildlife attack final reports) under the Conservation Officer Service ORCS (schedule 201311).

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Cariboo Region land and resource management committee files

  • GR-3933
  • Series
  • 1990-1998

This series consists of land and resource management committee files and executive records from the Cariboo Region, 1990-1998. Records relate to a variety of environmental and land use issues in the Cariboo Chilcotin area, including: wildlife management, water, use of range land, Taseko Mines proposal, fishing, land and resource management plans (LRMPs) and the development and implementation of the Cariboo Chilcotin Land Use Plan. Records include correspondence, reports, minutes, reference material and briefing notes.

Executive records include referral replies, files of reference material and some files regarding specific issues and projects involving the Minister and other Executives.

Records include minutes and other operational records of several different committees. Most records are from the Cariboo Regional Interagency Management Committee and Commission on Resources and Environment (CORE). There are also related files from the Cariboo Chilcotin Regional Resource Board, Cariboo Chilcotin Land Use Committee and meeting files from various regional mangers and executive groups.

Files may include consultations with and comments from community groups, resource users and First Nations regarding the development of management plans, land use and environmental issues.

Records have been selected for permanent retention and are scheduled under Administrative Records Classification numbers 204-20, 280-30 and 102-20.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

South Coast land and resource management committee files

  • GR-3912
  • Series
  • 1991-2013

This series consists of committee files from the Environmental Stewardship Division (ESD) of the South Coast Region, 1991-2013. The records are those of Brian Clark, who worked as the Regional Manager of Fish, Wildlife & Habitat Protection, Ministry of Environment Lands and Parks; Regional Manager of the Environmental Stewardship Division, Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection; Regional Director of the Environmental Stewardship Division, Ministry of Environment; and Executive Director of the Resource Stewardship Division, Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resource Operations. Clark also acted as Chair of Burrard Inlet Environmental Action Program (BIEAP) and Chair of Fraser River Estuary Management Program (FREMP); both of these programs ended in 2013.

The records in this series document the involvement of the environmental and resource stewardship south coast regional office in several interjurisdictional environmental advisory and planning committees, working groups, and initiatives. The committees address environmental issues relating to fish and wildlife habitat, air quality, climate change, water quality, aquatic ecology, vegetation, and terrain and soils in the Fraser Valley and Metro Vancouver area. The mandates and missions of the committees touch on the intergovernmental coordination of environmental issues, conserving agricultural and wildlife resources, and preventing the loss and degradation of coastal habitats.

Records include meeting minutes, correspondence, reports, studies, agreements, drafts, briefing notes, reference materials, financial records, agendas, presentations, annual reports, environmental assessment records and maps.

The series also includes a few files of legal materials from ESD, including correspondence, court records, briefing notes, reports, and records related to document discovery.

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)

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

Environment cabinet committees and working groups

  • GR-3874
  • Series
  • 1994-2001

This series contains various cabinet committees and working groups representing environmental issues. These particular files were kept by the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. The committees were made to advise the Deputy Minister and Minister on important environmental issues to bring to Cabinet. Currently, the majority of the records pertain to the Green Economy Initiative for which there was a Deputy Minister’s Committee and a Working Group. This Initiative worked on boosting the province’s economy using eco-friendly innovation and investments into green companies. A smaller portion of the files belong to the Forest Renewal BC Environment Committee which worked on a terrestrial ecosystem restoration program.
The records of these committees typically contain agenda, presentations, summary reports, appointment letters and accompanying materials for discussion meetings. The series also contains minister’s briefing books for the Green Economy Initiative as well as a cabinet submission form for reducing gas emissions. There is also a file with government’s policy on security for Cabinet documents.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks

Enforcement committees

  • GR-3786
  • Series
  • 1991-1997

The series consists of administrative records from the Enforcement and Environmental Emergencies Branch (and later the Enforcement Program) of the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors. Specifically, these records relate to committees of the ministry which worked in collaboration with or required the input of the Enforcement Program.

Within these files are records relating to the following committees or groups: States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force, Emergency Towing System Task Force, Forest Practices Code Steering Committee, Enforcement Corporate Committee, Enforcement Training Committee, Marine Spills Coordinating Committee, Spill Reporting Committee, Poaching Committee, Bear Human Conflict Committee, Municipal Sewage Regulations Implementation Committee, Compliance Committee, Conservation Office Service Management Team, Fish Hydro Committee, Forest Tech Working Group, and the Inter-Agency Enforcement Committee. The records are valuable in that they document the ministry’s responsibilities, preparation and response to environmental emergencies and violations of ministry legislation and regulations.
A large amount of these committees were created to evaluate different programs in the ministry. For example, the purpose of the Oil Spill Task Force was to examine marine oil spill prevention, response initiations and to make recommendations. This was an international endeavor with the participation of British Columbia and the states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California. The records document the progression of talks between participants on the subject.
The Corporate Committee records include their discussions regarding an Environment, Lands and Parks agenda for BC that would outline the priorities of the ministry while the Enforcement Evaluation Steering Committee records discuss how to evaluate the enforcement function ministry-wide. The committees’ records discussing administrative and prosecutorial enforcement activities aimed at protecting the environment, the public and property by encouraging compliance with ministry legislation and regulations, punishing offenders or deterring potential offenders and increasing public awareness. There are also records outlining initiatives to update training and equipment for conservation officers.
The types of records found in the series include meeting minutes, memos, news releases, correspondence, agenda, draft policy reports, risk analysis, conference papers, news clippings, proposals, presentations, studies, notes, financial estimates, reference material and publications. The following final reports are included in the records: Alternative Response Technologies - In Situ Burning and dispersants; Drills and Exercises - Recommendations to Prevent Marine Oil Spills Caused by Human Error; Oiled Wildlife Care Facilities; Dedicated Rescue Tug; Spill Reporting and Notification Alternatives in BC, among others.
The records are arranged according to ARCS Schedule 100001, primary 200 and secondary 20: Committees, General.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)

Conservation Officer Service records

  • GR-3875
  • Series
  • 1996-2005

This series contains records from the Conservation Service Office, part of the Enforcement program of the Ministry of Environment and its predecessors. The series contains records related to the image/identity of the service, such as details on the establishment of their service flag, commemoration medals and motto. There are also records related to Conservation Officer job descriptions and job training which includes manuals and/or instructions related to writing reports, conducting investigations and handling firearms. The series also covers information related to special sections under the Enforcement program for commercial and industrial investigations.

British Columbia. Ministry of Environment (2005-2017)