Metal and Diamond Mining Effluent Regulations

Version of the schedule from 2012-03-02 to 2018-05-31:


SCHEDULE 5(Section 7, subsection 15(1) and paragraph 32(1)(c))Environmental Effects Monitoring Studies

Interpretation

  • 1 The following definitions apply in this Schedule.

    effect on fish tissue

    effect on fish tissue means measurements of concentrations of total mercury that exceed 0.5 μg/g wet weight in fish tissue taken in an exposure area and that are statistically different from and higher than the concentrations of total mercury in fish tissue taken in a reference area. (effet sur les tissus de poissons)

    effect on the benthic invertebrate community

    effect on the benthic invertebrate community means a statistical difference between data referred to in subparagraph 16(a)(iii) from a study respecting the benthic invertebrate community conducted in

    • (a) an exposure area and a reference area; or

    • (b) sampling areas within an exposure area where there are gradually decreasing effluent concentrations. (effet sur la communauté d’invertébrés benthiques)

    effect on the fish population

    effect on the fish population means a statistical difference between data relating to the indicators referred to in subparagraph 16(a)(i) from a study respecting fish population conducted in

    • (a) an exposure area and a reference area; or

    • (b) sampling areas within an exposure area where there are gradually decreasing effluent concentrations. (effet sur la population de poissons)

    exposure area

    exposure area means all fish habitat and waters frequented by fish that are exposed to effluent. (zone exposée)

    fish

    fish means fish as defined in section 2 of the Fisheries Act but does not include parts of fish, parts of shellfish, parts of crustaceans or parts of marine animals. (poisson)

    reference area

    reference area means water frequented by fish that is not exposed to effluent and that has fish habitat that, as far as practicable, is most similar to that of the exposure area. (zone de référence)

    sampling area

    sampling area means the area within a reference or exposure area where representative samples are collected. (zone d’échantillonnage)

  • 2 Environmental effects monitoring studies consist of the effluent and water quality monitoring studies set out in Part 1, and the biological monitoring studies set out in Part 2, of this Schedule.

PART 1Effluent and Water Quality Monitoring Studies

Required Studies

  • 3 Effluent and water quality monitoring studies consist of effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring.

Effluent Characterization

    • 4 (1) Effluent characterization is conducted by analysing a sample of effluent and recording the hardness, alkalinity, electrical conductivity and temperature of the sample and the concentrations, in total values, of the following:

      • (a) aluminum;

      • (b) cadmium;

      • (c) iron;

      • (d) subject to subsection (3), mercury;

      • (e) molybdenum;

      • (f) selenium;

      • (g) ammonia; and

      • (h) nitrate.

    • (2) The effluent characterization shall be conducted four times per calendar year and not less than one month apart, on aliquots of effluent sample collected under sections 12 and 13 of these Regulations, with the first characterization to be conducted on an aliquot of effluent sample collected not later than six months after the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations.

    • (3) The recording of the concentration of total mercury in effluent referred to in paragraph (1)(d) may be discontinued if that concentration is less than 0.10 µg/L in 12 consecutive samples collected under subsection (2).

    • (4) Quality assurance and quality control measures shall be implemented that will ensure the accuracy of the effluent characterization data.

Sublethal Toxicity Testing

    • 5 (1) Sublethal toxicity testing shall be conducted by following the applicable methods referred to in subsections (3) and (4) and recording the results for

      • (a) a fish species, an invertebrate species, a plant species and an algal species, in the case of effluent deposited into fresh waters; and

      • (b) a fish species, an invertebrate species and an algal species, in the case of effluent deposited into marine or estuarine waters.

    • (2) The sublethal toxicity tests shall be conducted on the aliquots of effluent sample collected in accordance with subsection 4(2) from the mine’s final discharge point that has potentially the most adverse environmental impact on the environment, taking into account the mass loadings of the deleterious substances set out in column 1 of Schedule 4 as determined under subsection 20(2) of these Regulations and the manner in which the effluent mixes within the exposure area.

    • (3) The sublethal toxicity tests under paragraph (1)(a) shall be conducted using the following test methodologies, as amended from time to time, as applicable to each species:

      • (a) in the case of a fish species,

        • (i) Biological Test Method: Test of Larval Growth and Survival Using Fathead Minnows (Report EPS 1/RM/22), February 1992, published by the Department of the Environment, or

        • (ii) Biological Test Method: Toxicity Tests Using Early Life Stages of Salmonid Fish (Rainbow Trout) (Reference Method EPS 1/RM/28), July 1998, published by the Department of the Environment;

      • (b) in the case of an invertebrate species, Biological Test Method: Test of Reproduction and Survival Using the Cladoceran Ceriodaphnia dubia (Report EPS 1/RM/21), February 1992, published by the Department of the Environment;

      • (c) in the case of a plant species, Biological Test Method: Test for Measuring the Inhibition of Growth Using the Freshwater Macrophyte, Lemna minor (Reference Method EPS 1/RM/37), March 1999, published by the Department of the Environment; and

      • (d) in the case of an algal species,

        • (i) Biological Test Method: Growth Inhibition Test Using Freshwater Alga Selenastrum capricornutum (Report EPS 1/RM/25), November 1992, published by the Department of the Environment, or

        • (ii) Détermination de l’inhibition de la croissance chez l’algue Selenastrum capricornutum (Reference Method MA 500-S.cap.2.0), September 1997, published by the Centre d’expertise en analyse environnementale du Québec.

    • (4) The sublethal toxicity tests under paragraph (1)(b) shall be conducted using the following test methodologies, as amended from time to time, as applicable to each species:

      • (a) Biological Test Method: Fertilization Assay Using Echinoids (Sea Urchins and Sand Dollars) (Report EPS 1/RM/27), December 1992, published by the Department of the Environment;

      • (b) Short-term Methods for Estimating the Chronic Toxicity of Effluents and Receiving Waters to Marine and Estuarine Organisms (Third Edition) (Reference Method EPA/821/R-02/014), October 2002, published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and

      • (c) Short-term Methods for Estimating the Chronic Toxicity of Effluent and Receiving Waters to West Coast Marine and Estuarine Organisms (First Edition) (Reference Method EPA/600/R-95-136), August 1995, published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

    • 6 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the sublethal toxicity tests under section 5 shall be conducted two times each calendar year for three years and once each year after the third year, with the first testing to occur on an effluent sample collected not later than six months after the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations.

    • (2) Sublethal toxicity testing may be conducted once each calendar year, if the results of six sublethal toxicity tests conducted after December 31, 1997, on a fish species, an invertebrate species and either an aquatic plant species or an algal species are submitted to the authorization officer not later than six months after the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations.

Water Quality Monitoring

    • 7 (1) Water quality monitoring is conducted by

      • (a) collecting samples of water from

        • (i) the exposure area surrounding the point of entry of effluent into water from each final discharge point and from the related reference areas, and

        • (ii) the sampling areas that are selected under paragraphs 12(b) and 13(a);

      • (b) recording the temperature of the water and the dissolved oxygen concentration in the water in the exposure and reference areas where the samples are collected;

      • (c) recording the concentration of the substances set out in paragraphs 4(1)(a) to (h) and,

        • (i) in the case of effluent that is deposited into fresh water, recording the pH, hardness, alkalinity and electrical conductivity of the water samples,

        • (ii) in the case of effluent that is deposited into estuarine waters, recording the pH, hardness, alkalinity, electrical conductivity and salinity of the water samples, and

        • (iii) in the case of effluent that is deposited into marine waters, recording the salinity of the water samples;

      • (d) recording the concentration of the deleterious substances set out in column 1 of Schedule 4, but

        • (i) not recording the concentrations of cyanide if that substance is not used as a process reagent within the operations area, and

        • (ii) not recording the concentrations of radium 226 if the conditions of subsection 13(2) of these Regulations are met; and

      • (e) implementing quality assurance and quality control measures that will ensure the accuracy of water quality monitoring data.

    • (2) The water quality monitoring shall be conducted, starting not later than six months after the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations,

      • (a) four times per calendar year and not less than one month apart on the samples of water collected, while the mine is depositing effluent, from the areas referred to in subparagraph (1)(a)(i); and

      • (b) at the same time that the biological monitoring studies are conducted on samples of water collected in the areas referred to in subparagraph (1)(a)(ii).

Effluent and Water Quality Monitoring Report

  • 8 A report on the effluent and water quality monitoring studies conducted during a calendar year under sections 4 to 7 shall be submitted to the authorization officer not later than March 31 of the following year, and shall include

    • (a) the dates on which each sample was collected for effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring;

    • (b) the locations of the final discharge points from which samples were collected for effluent characterization;

    • (c) the location of the final discharge point from which samples were collected for sublethal toxicity testing and the data on which the selection of the final discharge point was made in compliance with subsection 5(2);

    • (d) the latitude and longitude of sampling areas for water quality monitoring, in degrees, minutes and seconds, and a description that is sufficient to identify the location of the sampling areas;

    • (e) the results of effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring;

    • (f) the methodologies used to conduct effluent characterization and water quality monitoring, and the related method detection limits; and

    • (g) a description of quality assurance and quality control measures that were implemented and the data related to the implementation of those measures.

PART 2Biological Monitoring Studies

Required Studies

  • 9 Biological monitoring studies consist of

    • (a) a site characterization;

    • (b) a study respecting the fish population, if the concentration of effluent in the exposure area is greater than 1% in the area located within 250 m of a final discharge point;

    • (c) a study respecting fish tissue, if during effluent characterization conducted under paragraph 4(1)(d) a concentration of total mercury in the effluent is identified that is equal to or greater than 0.10 µg/L; and

    • (d) a study respecting benthic invertebrate community.

DIVISION 1The First Biological Monitoring Studies

First Study Design
  • 10 Prior to the conduct of the biological monitoring studies, a study design shall be submitted in accordance with section 14 that contains

    • (a) a site characterization that includes the information required by section 11;

    • (b) a description of how the study respecting the fish population will be conducted, if such a study is required under paragraph 9(b), that includes

      • (i) the information referred to in paragraphs 12(a) to (d), and

      • (ii) how the study will provide the information necessary to determine if the effluent has an effect on the fish population;

    • (c) a description of how the study respecting fish tissue will be conducted, if that study is required under paragraph 9(c), that includes

      • (i) the information referred to in paragraphs 12(a) to (d), and

      • (ii) how the study will provide the information necessary to determine if the effluent has an effect on fish tissue;

    • (d) a description of how the study respecting the benthic invertebrate community will be conducted that includes

      • (i) the information referred to in paragraphs 13(a) to (d), and

      • (ii) how the study will provide the information necessary to determine if the effluent has an effect on the benthic invertebrate community;

    • (e) the dates and times that the samples will be collected for the biological monitoring;

    • (f) a description of the quality assurance and quality control measures that will be implemented to ensure the validity of the data that is collected; and

    • (g) a summary of the results of any biological monitoring studies that were submitted under subparagraph 14(b)(iii).

  • 11 A site characterization shall include the following information:

    • (a) a description of the manner in which the effluent mixes within the exposure area, including an estimate of the concentration of effluent in water at 250 m from each final discharge point;

    • (b) a description of the reference and exposure areas where the biological monitoring studies will be conducted that includes information on the geological, hydrological, oceanographical, limnological, chemical and biological features of those areas;

    • (c) the type of production process used by the mine, and the environmental protection practices in place at the mine;

    • (d) a summary of any federal, provincial or other laws applicable to the mine in respect of effluent and environmental monitoring;

    • (e) a description of any anthropogenic, natural or other factors that are not related to the effluent under study and that may reasonably be expected to contribute to any observed effect; and

    • (f) any additional information relevant to the site characterization.

  • 12 The information respecting the fish population and fish tissue studies shall include a description of and the scientific rationale for

    • (a) the fish species selected, taking into account the abundance of the species most exposed to effluent;

    • (b) the sampling areas selected;

    • (c) the sample size selected; and

    • (d) the field and laboratory methodologies selected.

  • 13 The information respecting the benthic invertebrate community studies shall include a description of and the scientific rationale for

    • (a) the sampling areas selected, taking into account the benthic invertebrate diversity and the area most exposed to effluent;

    • (b) the sample size selected;

    • (c) the sampling season selected; and

    • (d) the field and laboratory methodologies selected.

Submission of the First Study Design
  • 14 The first study design shall be submitted to the authorization officer not later than

    • (a) 12 months after the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations; or

    • (b) 24 months after the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations if

      • (i) biological monitoring studies are completed before the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations,

      • (ii) the biological monitoring studies referred to in subparagraph (i) determine whether the effluent was causing an effect on fish population, fish tissue or the benthic invertebrate community, and

      • (iii) the results of the biological monitoring studies are submitted to the authorization officer along with a report that contains scientific data to support the results not later than 12 months after the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations.

Conducting the First Biological Monitoring Studies
    • 15 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the first biological monitoring studies shall start not sooner than six months after the day on which a study design is submitted under section 14, and shall be conducted in accordance with that study design.

    • (2) If it is impossible to follow the study design because of unusual circumstances, the owner or operator may deviate from the study design but shall inform the authorization officer without delay of those circumstances and of how the study was or will be conducted.

Assessment of Data Collected from Studies
  • 16 The data collected during the biological monitoring studies shall be used

    • (a) to calculate the mean, the median, the standard deviation, the standard error and the minimum and maximum values in the sampling areas for

      • (i) in the case of a fish population survey, indicators of growth, reproduction, condition and survival that include, where practicable, the length, total body weight and age of the fish, the weight of its liver or hepatopancreas and, if the fish are sexually mature, the egg size, fecundity and gonad weight of the fish,

      • (ii) in the case of the fish tissue analyses, the concentration of total mercury wet weight in the fish tissue, and

      • (iii) in the case of a benthic invertebrate community survey, the total benthic invertebrate density, the evenness index, the taxa richness and the similarity index and, if the survey is conducted in an area where it is possible to sample sediment, the total organic carbon content of sediment and the particle size distribution of sediment; and

    • (b) to identify the sex of the fish sampled and the presence of any lesions, tumours, parasites or other abnormalities;

    • (c) to conduct an analysis of the results of the calculations under paragraph (a) and information identified under paragraph (b) to determine if there is a statistical difference between the sampling areas; and

    • (d) to conduct a statistical analysis of the results of the calculations under paragraph (a) to estimate the probability of correctly detecting an effect of a pre-defined size and the degree of confidence that can be placed in the calculations.

First Interpretative Report
  • 17 The first biological monitoring studies conducted under section 15 shall be followed by an interpretative report that contains the following information:

    • (a) a description of any deviation from the study design that occurred while the biological monitoring studies were being conducted and any impact that the deviation had on the studies;

    • (b) the latitude and longitude of sampling areas in degrees, minutes and seconds and a description of the sampling areas sufficient to identify the location of the sampling areas;

    • (c) the dates and times when samples were collected;

    • (d) the sample sizes;

    • (e) the results of the data assessment made under section 16 and any supporting raw data;

    • (f) based on the results referred to in paragraph (e), the identification of any effect on

      • (i) the fish population,

      • (ii) fish tissue, and

      • (iii) the benthic invertebrate community;

    • (g) a summary of the results of effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring reported under paragraph 8(e) since the day on which the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations;

    • (h) the conclusions of the biological monitoring studies, taking into account

      • (i) the results of any previous biological monitoring studies submitted under paragraph 14(b),

      • (ii) the presence of anthropogenic, natural or other factors that are not related to the effluent under study and that may reasonably be expected to contribute to any observed effect,

      • (iii) the results of the statistical analysis conducted under paragraphs 16(c) and (d), and

      • (iv) a description of quality assurance or quality control measures that were implemented and the data related to the implementation of those measures;

    • (i) a description of how the results will impact the study design for subsequent biological monitoring studies; and

    • (j) the date when the next biological monitoring study will be conducted.

  • 18 The first interpretative report shall be submitted

    • (a) not later than 30 months after the date the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations, if the study design was submitted under paragraph 14(a); or

    • (b) not later than 42 months after the date the mine becomes subject to section 7 of these Regulations, if the study design was submitted under paragraph 14(b).

DIVISION 2Subsequent Biological Monitoring Studies

Subsequent Study Designs
    • 19 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the study design for a second and any subsequent biological monitoring study shall be submitted to the authorization officer at least six months before a second or subsequent biological monitoring study is conducted, and shall include

      • (a) a summary of the information referred to in paragraph 10(a) and, where applicable, a detailed description of any changes to that information since the submission of the most recent study design;

      • (b) the information referred to in paragraphs 10(b) to (f);

      • (c) a summary of the results of any previous biological monitoring studies that were conducted after the coming into force of section 7 of these Regulations respecting the fish population, fish tissue analyses and the benthic invertebrate community; and

      • (d) if the results of the two previous biological monitoring studies indicate a similar type of effect on the fish population, on fish tissue or on the benthic invertebrate community, a description of one or more additional sampling areas within the exposure area that shall be used to assess the magnitude and geographic extent of the effect.

    • (2) If the results of the previous biological monitoring study indicate the magnitude and geographic extent of an effect on the fish population, on fish tissue or on the benthic invertebrate community, the study design shall include the information required by paragraph (1)(c) and a detailed description of what field and laboratory studies will be used to determine the cause of the effect.

Conduct of Subsequent Biological Monitoring Studies
    • 20 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the second and any subsequent monitoring studies shall be conducted in accordance with the study design submitted under section 19.

    • (2) If unusual circumstances make it impossible to follow the study design, the owner or operator must inform the authorization officer without delay.

Content of Subsequent Interpretative Reports
    • 21 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the second and subsequent biological monitoring studies conducted under section 20 shall be followed by an interpretative report that contains

      • (a) the information referred to in paragraphs 17(a) to (f) and (h) to (j);

      • (a.1) a summary of the results of effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring reported under paragraph 8(e) since the day on which the interpretative report of the previous biological monitoring study was required to be submitted; and

      • (b) if the study design that was submitted under subsection 19(1) contains information referred to in paragraph 19(1)(d), the magnitude and geographic extent of the effect referred to in that paragraph.

    • (2) If the study design was submitted under subsection 19(2), the interpretative report shall contain only the cause of the effect referred to in that subsection and, if the cause was not determined, an explanation of why and a description of any steps that must be taken in the next study to determine that cause.

Submission of the Subsequent Interpretative Reports
    • 22 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the interpretative report of the second and any subsequent biological monitoring studies shall be submitted to an authorization officer not later than 36 months after the day on which the interpretative report of the previous biological monitoring study was required to be submitted.

    • (2) The interpretative report of the second and subsequently conducted biological monitoring studies shall be submitted

      • (a) not later than 36 months after the day on which the interpretative report of the previous study was required to be submitted, if the results of the previous study indicate an effect on fish populations, on fish tissue and on the benthic invertebrate community;

      • (b) not later than 72 months after the day on which the interpretative report of the previous study was required to be submitted, if the results of the previous two consecutive biological monitoring studies indicate no effect on fish populations, on fish tissue and on the benthic invertebrate community; or

      • (c) not later than 36 months after the day on which the interpretative report of the previous study was required to be submitted, if the results of the previous two consecutive biological monitoring studies indicate a similar type of effect on fish populations, on fish tissue or on the benthic invertebrate community, and if the magnitude or geographic extent of the effect or cause of the effect is not known.

    • (3) For the purposes of subsection (2), if an owner or operator of a mine is not required to conduct a study on the fish population or on fish tissue under paragraph 9(b) or (c), the effluent is considered to have no effect on the fish population or on fish tissue respectively.

DIVISION 3Final Biological Monitoring Study prior to Closing Mine

Final Study Design
    • 23 (1) If an owner or operator of a mine has provided to the authorization officer a notice to close a mine under subsection 32(1) of these Regulations, a study design shall be submitted to the authorization officer, not later than six months after providing the notice, and shall include

      • (a) if study design is submitted for the first time, the information referred to in paragraph 10(a) and, in all other cases, a summary of the information referred to in paragraph 10(a) and, where applicable, a detailed description of any changes to that information since the submission of the most recent study design;

      • (b) the information referred to in paragraphs 10(b) to (f);

      • (c) a summary of the results of any previous biological monitoring studies that were conducted after June 6, 2002 respecting the fish population, fish tissue and the benthic invertebrate community; and

      • (d) if the results of the two previous biological monitoring studies indicate a similar type of effect on the fish population, on fish tissue or on the benthic invertebrate community, a description of one or more additional sampling areas within the exposure area, which additional sampling areas shall be used to assess the magnitude and geographic extent of the effect.

    • (2) If the results of the previous biological monitoring studies indicate the magnitude and geographic extent of an effect on fish population, on fish tissue or on the benthic invertebrate community, the study design shall include the information required by paragraph (1)(c) and a detailed description of what field and laboratory studies will be used to determine the cause of the effect.

Conduct of Final Biological Monitoring Studies
    • 24 (1) Subject to subsection (2), the final monitoring studies shall be conducted in accordance with the study design submitted under section 23 not sooner than six months after the day on which the final study design has been submitted.

    • (2) If unusual circumstances make it impossible to follow the study design, the owner or operator must inform the authorization officer without delay.

Content of Final Interpretative Report
  • 25 The final biological monitoring studies conducted under section 24 shall be followed by an interpretative report that contains

    • (a) the information referred to in paragraphs 17(a) to (f) and (h);

    • (a.1) a summary of the results of effluent characterization, sublethal toxicity testing and water quality monitoring reported under paragraph 8(e) since the day on which the interpretative report of the previous biological monitoring study was required to be submitted;

    • (b) if the study design that was submitted under subsection 23(1) contains the information referred to in paragraph 23(1)(d), the magnitude and geographic extent of the effect referred to in that paragraph; and

    • (c) if the study design was submitted under subsection 23(2), the cause of the effect referred to in that subsection.

Submission of the Final Interpretative Report
  • 26 The final interpretative report shall be submitted to the authorization officer not later than 36 months after the day on which the notice to close the mine was provided under subsection 32(1) of these Regulations.

  • SOR/2006-239, ss. 26 to 33, 34(F)
  • SOR/2012-22, ss. 10 to 17
Date modified: