Permit to Take Water - Technical Paper on Proposed Changes
Published on: 18/03/2015
The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has published a Technical Discussion Paper on Proposed Regulatory Changes and Environmental Activity and Sector Registry (EASR) Requirements, which is presently posted on the government’s Regulatory Registry for public review and comment (http://goo.gl/9EacC8). The proposal incorporates a number of items that the OSWCA has raised with the MOECC as in need of reform for Class 1 and Class 2 water-takings.
The objective of this discussion paper is to seek public input on three primary proposals that are being put forward for regulation change under O.Reg 387/04:
1. Clarify the difference between water taking and water moving/diversion in regulation;
2. Exempt certain activities from the permitting process;
3. Regulate certain short-term, non-recurring water taking activities through an electronic registration process.
Ultimately the goal of the proposal is to reduce red-tape around the permitting process for construction projects that take place in or near watercourses.
Of particular interest to OSWCA members are the following items:
Section 3.0 – Proposed Water Taking Clarification
• Proposed Activity That Would Not Be Considered Water Taking
o Diversion of the natural flow of a watercourse or lake for the purpose of isolating, creating or maintaining a construction site located wholly or partially within the water body where the water is directly returned to, or remains in, the same water body.
Section 4.1 – Proposed Construction-Related Water Taking Exemptions
• Pumping of water from a watercourse for the purpose of creating and maintaining a dewatered construction site located wholly or partially within a watercourse if the following conditions are met:
o Water pumped from the watercourse must be returned to the same watercourse.
o Water that is discharged shall not contain or produce a visible oil sheen.
o Prior to any water being discharged to the watercourse, flow rate controls (to control erosion and sedimentation, total suspended solids) must be installed and all required control measures must be implemented.
o All erosion and sediment control measures must be installed, used, operated and maintained in accordance with recommendations provided by the manufacturers of the control measures.
o All control measures must be removed and waste material collected or trapped by the control measures recovered and appropriately disposed of once the need to pump water for the activity is no longer necessary.
5.0 – Proposed Water Taking Activities Eligible for Electronic Registration
• Takings of surface water that meet specified restrictions on the purpose, rate or location of the water taking; and,
• Construction dewatering involving less than 400,000 litres per day.
The proposed eligibility criteria for activities available for electronic registration are included between pages 11 and 17 of the attached technical paper for your review and consideration. A number of other items are also included in the technical paper for consideration and comment.
We ask that any input that you may have be sent to Patrick by no later than April 22, so that all input can be consolidated in a final report to be delivered to the MOECC on April 24.
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