Species at Risk Act (S.C. 2002, c. 29)

Act current to 2017-11-20 and last amended on 2017-11-02. Previous Versions

Marginal note:Funding agreements
  •  (1) A competent minister may enter into an agreement with any government in Canada, organization or person to provide for the payment of contributions towards the costs of programs and measures for the conservation of wildlife species, including programs and measures under an agreement entered into under subsection 11(1) or 12(1).

  • Marginal note:Provisions to be included

    (2) The agreement must specify

    • (a) the contribution towards the cost of the program or measure that is payable by any party and the time or times at which any amounts under the agreement will be paid;

    • (b) the authority or person who will be responsible for operating and maintaining the program or measure or any part of it;

    • (c) the proportions of any revenue from the program or measure that is payable to the parties; and

    • (d) the terms and conditions governing the operation and maintenance of the program or measure.

Wildlife Species Listing Process

Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada

Marginal note:Establishment

 The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada is hereby established.

Marginal note:Functions
  •  (1) The functions of COSEWIC are to

    • (a) assess the status of each wildlife species considered by COSEWIC to be at risk and, as part of the assessment, identify existing and potential threats to the species and

      • (i) classify the species as extinct, extirpated, endangered, threatened or of special concern,

      • (ii) indicate that COSEWIC does not have sufficient information to classify the species, or

      • (iii) indicate that the species is not currently at risk;

    • (b) determine when wildlife species are to be assessed, with priority given to those more likely to become extinct;

    • (c) conduct a new assessment of the status of species at risk and, if appropriate, reclassify or declassify them;

    • (c.1) indicate in the assessment whether the wildlife species migrates across Canada’s boundary or has a range extending across Canada’s boundary;

    • (d) develop and periodically review criteria for assessing the status of wildlife species and for classifying them and recommend the criteria to the Minister and the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council; and

    • (e) provide advice to the Minister and the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council and perform any other functions that the Minister, after consultation with that Council, may assign.

  • Marginal note:Best information and knowledge

    (2) COSEWIC must carry out its functions on the basis of the best available information on the biological status of a species, including scientific knowledge, community knowledge and aboriginal traditional knowledge.

  • Marginal note:Treaties and land claims agreements

    (3) COSEWIC must take into account any applicable provisions of treaty and land claims agreements when carrying out its functions.

Marginal note:Composition
  •  (1) COSEWIC is to be composed of members appointed by the Minister after consultation with the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council and with any experts and expert bodies, such as the Royal Society of Canada, that the Minister considers to have relevant expertise.

  • Marginal note:Qualifications of members

    (2) Each member must have expertise drawn from a discipline such as conservation biology, population dynamics, taxonomy, systematics or genetics or from community knowledge or aboriginal traditional knowledge of the conservation of wildlife species.

  • Marginal note:Term of appointment

    (3) The members are to be appointed to hold office for renewable terms of not more than four years.

  • Marginal note:Not part of the public service of Canada

    (4) The members are not, because of being a member, part of the public service of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Remuneration and expenses

    (5) The members may be paid remuneration and expenses for their services in amounts that the Minister may set.

  • Marginal note:Discretion

    (6) Each member of COSEWIC shall exercise his or her discretion in an independent manner.

Marginal note:Regulations and guidelines

 The Minister may, after consultation with the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council and COSEWIC, establish regulations or guidelines respecting the appointment of members and the carrying out of COSEWIC’s functions.

Marginal note:Subcommittees
  •  (1) COSEWIC must establish subcommittees of specialists to assist in the preparation and review of status reports on wildlife species considered to be at risk, including subcommittees specializing in groups of wildlife species and a subcommittee specializing in aboriginal traditional knowledge, and it may establish other subcommittees to advise it or to exercise or perform any of its functions.

  • Marginal note:Membership

    (2) Each subcommittee must be presided over by a member of COSEWIC, but the subcommittee may include persons who are not members of COSEWIC.

  • Marginal note:Aboriginal traditional knowledge subcommittee

    (3) Subject to subsection (2), the chairperson and members of the aboriginal traditional knowledge subcommittee must be appointed by the Minister after consultation with any aboriginal organization he or she considers appropriate.

Marginal note:Rules

 COSEWIC may make rules respecting the holding of meetings and the general conduct of its activities, including rules respecting

  • (a) the selection of persons to chair its meetings; and

  • (b) the meetings and activities of any of its subcommittees.

Marginal note:Staff and facilities

 The Minister must provide COSEWIC with any professional, technical, secretarial, clerical and other assistance, and any facilities and supplies, that, in his or her opinion, are necessary to carry out its functions.

Marginal note:Status reports
  •  (1) COSEWIC’s assessment of the status of a wildlife species must be based on a status report on the species that COSEWIC either has had prepared or has received with an application.

  • Marginal note:Content

    (2) The Minister may, after consultation with COSEWIC, the Minister responsible for the Parks Canada Agency and the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, make regulations establishing the content of status reports.

  • 2002, c. 29, s. 21;
  • 2005, c. 2, s. 18.
Marginal note:Applications
  •  (1) Any person may apply to COSEWIC for an assessment of the status of a wildlife species.

  • Marginal note:Regulations

    (2) The Minister may, after consultation with the Minister responsible for the Parks Canada Agency, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council, make regulations respecting the making of applications to COSEWIC under subsection (1) and the dealing with of those applications by COSEWIC.

  • 2002, c. 29, s. 22;
  • 2005, c. 2, s. 19.
Marginal note:Time for assessment
  •  (1) COSEWIC must assess the status of a wildlife species within one year after it receives a status report on the species, and it must provide reasons for its assessment.

  • Marginal note:Notification of applicant

    (2) If the assessment results from an application, COSEWIC must notify the applicant of the assessment and the reasons.

Reviews and Reports

Marginal note:Review of classifications

 COSEWIC must review the classification of each species at risk at least once every 10 years, or at any time if it has reason to believe that the status of the species has changed significantly.

Marginal note:Copies to Minister and Council
  •  (1) When COSEWIC completes an assessment of the status of a wildlife species, it must provide the Minister and the Canadian Endangered Species Conservation Council with a copy of the assessment and the reasons for it. A copy of the assessment and the reasons must also be included in the public registry.

  • Marginal note:COSEWIC list

    (2) COSEWIC must annually prepare a complete list of every wildlife species it has assessed since the coming into force of this section and a copy of that list must be included in the public registry.

  • Marginal note:Report on response

    (3) On receiving a copy of an assessment of the status of a wildlife species from COSEWIC under subsection (1), the Minister must, within 90 days, include in the public registry a report on how the Minister intends to respond to the assessment and, to the extent possible, provide time lines for action.

 
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