Notice of permit

Regional or Local Number: SARA-QR-2017-0396

Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the provisions of section 73 of the Species at Risk Act permit no. SARA-QR-2017-0396 is issued.

Purpose:
Affecting the species is incidental to the carrying out of the activity

Description:
This permit authorizes the applicant to remove and compact soils; remove, prune, damage, destroy or introduce any vegetation; alter surface water; operate a motor vehicle or an all-terrain vehicle; and deposit gravel, sand, or soil for the purpose of conducting river bank stabilization work on two erosion sites on the Saint-Jacques River within an area affected by an emergency order for the protection of the Western Chorus Frog (WCF), in La Prairie, QC (ref: SOR/2016-211). These erosions sites are on the left (west) bank between the Boulevard de la Fourche and Rue des Tulipes, totaling 154 meters of shoreline. Work authorized under this permit includes deforestation of the shoreline; excavation and profiling of riparian embankments; removal of cuttings of all types including stones and small pieces of embankments; the stabilization of river banks by placing riprap, boulders, erosion control blankets and branch mats, stem set rows, as well as by planting and seeding native vegetation, and cleaning and the ordering of the site.

Start Date: 2017-09-01   End Date: 2018-03-01

Issuing Authority: Environment Canada

Authority Used:

  • Species at Risk Act

Location of Activity (province, territory or ocean):

  • Quebec

Affected Species:

Pre-Conditions:
(a) All reasonable alternatives to the activity that would reduce the impact on the species have been considered and the best solution has been adopted. Not undertaking the stabilization work would fail to limit erosion activities and result in an increase in emergency interventions in the future to remove erosion jams causing flooding. The alternative of conducting the work without the use of heavy machinery was deemed not feasible, due to the amount and weight of material to be moved, and methods required to achieve adequate bank stabilization (i.e. compaction methods to resist erosion). The proponent also considered conducting the work at the onset of the hibernation period, however higher river flow levels, frozen soils, and low plant establishment would hinder the success of the project. The proponent conducted quality spring surveys (2017) allowing the confirmation that species presence at the work sites is unlikely. These surveys also provide a high confidence that the proposed solution will have the lowest level of impacts. The proposed activities are the most effective for obtaining the long-term protection objectives of urban infrastructure while having negligible consequences to the species. (b) All feasible measures will be taken to minimize the impact of the activity on the species or its critical habitat or the residences of its individuals. Measures to minimize risks include limiting the work to only the west (left) side of the river, which is not currently frequented by the species. Furthermore, the work sites will be rehabilitated after the work occurs, to address the needs of the species. Other proposed measures of environmental protection include the use of biodegradable oil, cleaning of machinery before site entry, invasive species management, post work site rehabilitation, presence of hydrocarbon spill response kits, and fueling vehicles and machinery outside of the area covered by the Emergency Protection Order. The activities will be conducted by professional contractors, who will be supervised by a professional environmental consultant familiar with the situation and the species. (c) The activity will not jeopardize the survival or recovery of the species. High quality surveys suggest that the sites are not currently occupied by Western Chorus Frog (WCF). The work sites are enclaved between the river and a residential area, minimizing potential impacts to connectivity. The impacts to the habitat will be temporary which would not prevent the species from using the habitat in the future. The EPO contains habitat that has been identified as critical habitat in a Recovery Strategy. Some disturbance of critical habitat may result from the activity, but no loss or degradation of critical habitat is expected. The site rehabilitation including the revegetation of currently bare floodplains, included in this project, will create a net positive effect, increasing the amount of suitable potential habitat for the species. The activity is not expected to exacerbate any of the threats identified in the recovery strategy.

Contact Person(s)
Habitat Division
Canadian Wildlife Service
Sainte-Foy, Quebec
Phone: (418) 684-5757
Fax: (418) 684-7045
E-mail: permislep.qc@ec.gc.ca