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Species at Risk Recovery Planning

Recovery Strategy for the Seaside Centipede Lichen (Heterodermia sitchensis) in Canada

A strategic environmental assessment (SEA) is conducted on all SARA recovery planning documents, in accordance with the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals. The purpose of a SEA is to incorporate environmental considerations into the development of public policies, plans, and program proposals to support environmentally-sound decision making.

Recovery planning is intended to benefit species at risk and biodiversity in general. However, it is recognized that strategies may also inadvertently lead to environmental effects beyond the intended benefits. The planning process based on national guidelines directly incorporates consideration of all environmental effects, with a particular focus on possible impacts on nontarget species or habitats. The results of the SEA are incorporated directly in the strategy itself, but are also summarized below.

The Recovery Strategy for the Seaside Centipede Lichen (Heterodermia sitchensis) in Canada underwent a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) review in accordance with the 2004 Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals. Impact assessment methodology focussed on identification and assessment of actions capable of generating environmental effects. Positive and negative impacts were considered. Scope of the assessment included review and evaluation of all actions proposed in the Recovery Strategy for the Seaside Centipede Lichen in Canada. Proposals thought to have potential to generate significant environmental effects were assessed and documented in greater detail. Results of the assessment are briefly discussed here. Please consult the Strategic Environmental Assessment of the Recovery Strategy for the Seaside Centipede Lichen in Canada, for detailed environmental assessment documentation.

The Recovery Strategy identified current threats to the Seaside Centipede Lichen and its habitat. Knowledge gaps were also identified. Recovery objectives and actions clearly focus on resolving specific threats and information gaps. Actions proposed in the recovery strategy have little potential to produce significant adverse environmental effects. The majority of actions are innocuous by nature. Actions involving fieldwork (inventory, monitoring, research) have the greatest potential to generate negative environmental effects. All fieldwork impacts are avoidable or can be fully mitigated with known technology.

Recovery planning is intended to benefit species at risk and biodiversity in general. However, it is recognized that strategies may also inadvertently lead to environmental effects beyond the intended benefits. The recovery strategy and SEA therefore assessed the potential for the strategy to inadvertently produce adverse effects on other species. Results indicate likely benefits to the Seaside Centipede Lichen and other species occupying the same habitat. Recovery strategy implementation is expected to result in increased retention of coastal oldgrowth forest, and improved knowledge and understanding of Seaside Centipede Lichen ecology in Pacific Northwest coastal environments. An improved ecological understanding of the species is beneficial, as it will help to focus current and subsequent recovery planning actions for the species and improve the probability for successful recovery. The net environmental effect of the recovery strategy is expected to be positive to both the species and the habitat in which it exists.

Some proposals described in the recovery strategy are conceptual. It is not possible to fully evaluate the environmental effects of these initiatives at this time. As more detailed information becomes available, projects will be assessed pursuant to the provisions of theCanadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA). The Parks Canada Agency is a Responsible Authority under the CEAA. The Agency will not undertake any project prior to preparing an environmental assessment and deciding on a course of action to approve, not approve, or refer the project for additional EA review.