Renewed Funding for the Implementation of the Baffin and Ukkusiksalik National Parks Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreements

October 19, 2018

In accordance with The Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals (2010), a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) for the Renewed Funding for the Implementation of the Baffin and Ukkusiksalik National Parks Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreements proposal was conducted on 19 September 2018. The purpose of SEA is to incorporate environmental considerations into the development of public policies, plans, and program proposals to support environmentally-sound decision making. Individual projects undertaken to implement management statement objectives at the site will be evaluated separately to determine if an impact assessment is required under the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act 2013.

The proposal seeks funding to continue the implementation of Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreements (IIBA) for four national parks in the Nunavut Settlement Area: Auyuittuq, Quttinirpaaq and Sirmilik National Parks (referred to as the Baffin National Parks) and Ukkusiksalik National Park. The Baffin IIBA and Ukkusiksalik IIBA were concluded in 1999 and 2003 respectively, and continue to be in force. The Baffin National Parks IIBA shall be reviewed at seven-year intervals and the Ukkusiksalik National Park IIBA shall be reviewed at five-year intervals (unless the Parties agree otherwise). The Baffin National Parks IIBA has been negotiated to be of indefinite duration and may be terminated only if both parties consent; whereas the Ukkusiksalik National Park IIBA shall be re-negotiated after the third review.

The expected outcome is continued protection and awareness of Parks Canada’s protected areas in the Nunavut Settlement Area and cooperative management of these protected areas with Inuit, with the goals to support the conservation of ecological integrity, engage partners and stakeholders in the protection and presentation of Parks Canada’s administered places, and enhance visitor experience. The proposal also fulfills a legal requirement under the Nunavut Agreement to implement the IIBAs related to national parks in the Nunavut Settlement Area.

The project will have neutral or positive effects on the natural and cultural resources and visitor experience opportunities of Auyuittuq, Sirmilik, Quttinirpaaq, and Ukkusiksalik National Parks; and it will have neutral or positive socio-economic effects and will enhance and protect the existing and future well-being of affected communities in the Nunavut Settlement Area.

The proposal will not substantially contribute to or challenge the Federal Sustainable Development goals. The Plan supports the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goal of Sustainably Managed Lands and Forests, Healthy Wildlife Populations, and Connecting Canadians with Nature. There are no important negative environmental effects anticipated from management statement implementation.