Environmental Impact Assessment
Fort Walsh National Historic Site of Canada Management Plan
This management plan was subjected to an environmental assessment pursuant to The 1999 Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals (Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency 1999). The environmental screening was conducted in the early stage of the planning process to ensure that the environmental effects of the initiatives contained in the plan were fully considered before any irrevocable decisions had been taken. The evaluation of environmental effects included a consideration of natural, cultural and socio-economic effects.
The provisions in the management plan monitor, protect and, where necessary, rehabilitate cultural resources at Fort Walsh. The management of access and activities will ensure impacts are minimal and focused on already impacted areas, while still providing quality visitor experience. Horseback riders will be provided with rider etiquette information, which should include information on reducing environmental impacts.
The plan includes provisions to monitor and adjust grazing management as necessary to ensure the impacts are not detrimental to the ecosystem. Sprague’s Pipits, a threatened species under theSpecies at Risk Act, have been heard at Fort Walsh and must be protected. No actions described in the plan are expected to negatively impact Sprague’s Pipits, however, if and when planning prescribed burns, clearing firebreaks, grazing and other projects, protection for Sprague’s Pipits or their nests must be ensured.
Cumulative effects are not expected to be significant. Parks Canada will work with provincial governments to address large-scale issues in the Cypress Hills. Sprague’s Pipits will be protected by following applicable directions in the Sprague’s Pipit recovery plan, when developed.
Proposals which could result in adverse effects or raise public concern will be subject to project-specific assessments conducted under theCanadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) or Parks Canada policy as the project develops from conceptual stage to design and implementation (e.g., stabilization and rehabilitation of the remount ranch buildings). The strategic environmental assessment of special events should include a consideration of environmental impacts and identify when environmental assessments will be necessary under CEAA.
The environmental screening has determined that actions in the management plan are not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects.
The complete environmental assessment report, from which this decision statement was derived, must be used in carrying out this management plan.