2015-16 Departmental Performance Report - Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy

1. Overview of the Federal Government's Approach to Sustainable Development

The Federal Sustainable Development Strategy 2013–16 presents the Government of Canada's sustainable development activities, as required by the Federal Sustainable Development Act. In keeping with the objectives of the Act to make environmental decision making more transparent and accountable to Parliament, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada supports the implementation of the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy through the activities described in this supplementary information table.

This Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy presents the results for Theme I – Addressing Climate Change and Air Quality, Theme II – Maintaining Water Quality and Availability, Theme III – Protecting Nature and Canadians, and Theme IV – Shrinking the Environmental Footprint – Beginning with Government.

2. Themes I to III: Department-Led Targets

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Performance Indicator Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target Additional Details on Planned Contributions and Expected Results Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Performance Status
Goal 3: Water Quality and Water Availability – Protect and enhance water so that it is clean, safe and secure for all Canadians and supports healthy ecosystems Water quality and soil quality agri-environmental performance metrics

Target 3.10: Agri-Environmental Performance Metrics

Achieve a value between 81–100 on each of the Water Quality and Soil Quality Agri-Environmental Performance Metrics by March 31, 2030

Full reporting of the Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture: Agri-environmental report series - Report #4 is planned for the 2015–16 fiscal year The Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture Report #4 was published on July 7, 2016
Goal 5: Biological Resources – Efficient economic and ecological use of resources – Production and consumption of biological resources are sustainable Wildlife habitat capacity on farmland

Target 5.4: Sustainable Agriculture

By 2020, agricultural working landscapes provide a stable or improved level of biodiversity and habitat capacity

Full reporting of the Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture: Agri-environmental report series - Report #4 is planned for the 2015–16 fiscal year The Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture Report #4 was published on July 7, 2016
Goal 5: Biological Resources – Efficient economic and ecological use of resources – Production and consumption of biological resources are sustainable Environmental farm planning on agricultural land

Target 5.4: Sustainable Agriculture

By 2020, agricultural working landscapes provide a stable or improved level of biodiversity and habitat capacity

Continued and updated environmental planning on agricultural land 95% of farms with environment plans (based on 2011 Farm Environmental Management Survey results) have indicated that Beneficial Management Practices have been partially or fully implemented. This confirms that producers are taking action to mitigate on-farm environmental risks, reflecting their ongoing stewardship ethic.

3. Themes I to III: Implementation Strategies

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 1: Climate Change
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 1.1: Climate Change Mitigation
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
1.1.12: Conduct targeted research to increase knowledge of climate change relative to agriculture and assess and report on the collective environmental and economic impact of the adoption of sustainable agriculture practices by farmers on the Canadian landscape.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.2: Research Accelerating Innovation

Description: This Growing Forward 2 (agricultural policy framework) program is designed to address emerging science-based requirements of the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector by generating and providing access to scientific knowledge that helps the industry to: identify and mitigate risks to agriculture and agri-food production; enhance the safety of the food system; sustainably increase its productivity to improve its bottom line through more efficient use of inputs; enhance the resilience of the sector to a changing climate; and to capture market opportunities. Objectives of this program include: conduct innovative research to understand key challenges and opportunities facing the sector; transform scientific knowledge into agricultural products, processes and practices that improve competitiveness; promote research to understand the key environmental sustainability challenges facing Canadian farmers; encourage the transformation of scientific knowledge into agricultural practices that improve the environmental sustainability and profitability of farming operations; support scientific measurement and analysis of the environmental sustainability performance of the sector that will facilitate competitiveness; and work with industry to target Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada efforts towards key business risks and opportunities.

Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Agri-environmental indicators are available to assess and report on the sector's environmental and economic sustainability Regular reporting on the environmental sustainability of Canadian agriculture Full reporting of the Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture: Agri-environmental report series - Report #4 is planned for the 2015–16 fiscal year The Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture Report #4 was published on July 7, 2016
Increase knowledge by the scientific community in the area of climate change Number of scientific articles accepted for publication through an external peer-reviewed process 75 articles related to climate change by March 31, 2018 (2013–2018)

587

The Actual Results is  higher than the 46 articles reported in the 2014–15 Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy because of the increase in the number of submitted projects and in research results being accepted for publishing

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 1: Climate Change
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 1.1: Climate Change Mitigation
Implementation Strategy: Enabling Capacity
1.1.52: Support Canada's participation in multilateral fora outside of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and ensure that Canada's international climate change objectives are advanced in international meetings including addressing short-lived climate pollutants (for example, Climate and Clean Air Coalition, Global Methane Initiative and Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, Major Economies Forum and Arctic Council).

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.1: Science Supporting an Innovative and Sustainable Sector

Description: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada conducts longer term core research and development work to advance the understanding of: the resource base upon which agriculture depends; threats to Canadian agriculture production; mechanisms to protect and conserve Canadian bioresources and genetic diversity; and future new opportunities for the sector. This program also maintains a strong network of world-class research centres and offices across the country with scientific expertise to meet the research needs of existing and emerging agricultural commodity groups, and to participate in collaborative partnerships with industry, academia, non-governmental organizations and others that undertake research aimed at yield enhancement, input reductions, prevention of diseases or pests, market access and risk mitigation, and development of new areas of opportunity for the sector.

Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results

*The Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture is the only global forum for governments to discuss and negotiate matters relevant to agricultural biodiversity. It has 175 country members and is operated by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Canada joined in 1989.

The International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture objectives include conserving plant genetic resources essential for food security, and providing access to them and using them in a sustainable manner. Canada ratified the Treaty in 2002 and is a member of its governing body.

Expertise and other support for Canada's participation in multilateral fora outside of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (for example, Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture*) Provide as required Provide as required

Agriculture Agri-Food Canada funded Canada’s membership in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

June 2-5, 2015: Canada participated in a meeting of the Treaty’s subsidiary Working Group to Enhance the Functioning of the Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-Sharing at Food and Agriculture Organization Headquarters in Rome

October 5-9, 2015: Canada participated as a member country in a meeting of the Governing Body of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 2:Air Pollution
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 2.1: Outdoor Pollutants
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
2.1.18: Conduct basic and applied research to increase knowledge of the effects of agricultural production on air.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption, and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.1: Science Supporting an Innovative and Sustainable Sector

Description: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada conducts longer term core research and development work to advance the understanding of: the resource base upon which agriculture depends; threats to Canadian agriculture production; mechanisms to protect and conserve Canadian bioresources and genetic diversity; and future new opportunities for the sector. This program also maintains a strong network of world-class research centres and offices across the country with scientific expertise to meet the research needs of existing and emerging agricultural commodity groups, and to participate in collaborative partnerships with industry, academia, non-governmental organizations, and others that undertake research aimed at yield enhancement, input reductions, prevention of diseases or pests, market access and risk mitigation, and development of new areas of opportunity for the sector.

Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Increased understanding by the scientific community of the interactions and impact of agricultural practices on the air resources Number of scientific articles accepted for publication through an external peer-reviewed process 50 papers by March 31, 2018 (2013–2018)

324

The Actual Results is higher than the 117 articles reported in the 2014–15 Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy because of the increase in the number of submitted projects and in research results being accepted for publishing

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 3: Water Quality and Water Availability
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 3.10: Agri-Environmental Performance Metrics
Implementation Strategy: Enabling Capacity
3.10.1: Provide cost-shared funding to provinces and territories that provide a systematic approach to farmers to assess priority environmental risks, plan effective mitigation and increase adoption of sustainable agricultural practices at farm and landscape levels.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.6: Federal, provincial and territorial Cost-shared Environment

Description: This Growing Forward 2 program provides support for provincial and territorial activities aimed at supporting the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based sector and its businesses to assess and respond to priority environmental risks and manage the natural resource base sustainably. The programming is mainly designed to minimize and mitigate impacts and risks to the quality of soil, water, air, and biodiversity; supporting the long term health and sustainability of natural resources used for agricultural production and, the long-term economic and environmental viability of the agriculture industry.

Implementation Strategy: Enabling Capacity 3.10.1
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
The sector is taking actions to minimize environmental risks and using inputs efficiently Cumulative number of Beneficial Management Practices implemented under Growing Forward 2 Federal-Provincial-Territorial Cost-shared programming 17,600 by March 31, 2019
(2013-2018)

4,579 Beneficial Management Practices have been reported for 2014–15, representing 26% of the cumulative performance target expected by March 31, 2019

Provincial and territorial annual performance data for 2015–16 are expected to be available in 2016–17

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 3: Water Quality and Water Availability
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 3.10: Agri-Environmental Performance Metrics
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
3.10.2: Conduct targeted research to increase knowledge of water resources relative to agriculture and enhance knowledge of nutrient management to increase efficiency and lower the potential of contamination of water resources.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption, and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.1: Science Supporting an Innovative and Sustainable Sector
      • Sub-Program 2.1.2: Research Accelerating Innovation

Description: Under sub-program 2.1.1, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada conducts longer term core research and development work to advance the understanding of: the resource base upon which agriculture depends; threats to Canadian agriculture production; mechanisms to protect and conserve Canadian bioresources and genetic diversity; and future new opportunities for the sector. This program also maintains a strong network of world-class research centres and offices across the country with scientific expertise to meet the research needs of existing and emerging agricultural commodity groups, and to participate in collaborative partnerships with industry, academia, non-governmental organizations, and others that undertake research aimed at yield enhancement, input reductions, prevention of diseases or pests, market access and risk mitigation, and development of new areas of opportunity for the sector.

Under sub-program 2.1.2, this Growing Forward 2 program is designed to address emerging science-based requirements of the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector by generating and providing access to scientific knowledge that helps the industry to: identify and mitigate risks to agriculture and agri-food production; enhance the safety of the food system; sustainably increase its productivity to improve its bottom line through more efficient use of inputs; enhance the resilience of the sector to a changing climate; and to capture market opportunities. Objectives of this program include: conduct innovative research to understand key challenges and opportunities facing the sector; transform scientific knowledge into agricultural products, processes and practices that improve competitiveness; promote research to understand the key environmental sustainability challenges facing Canadian farmers; encourage the transformation of scientific knowledge into agricultural practices that improve the environmental sustainability and profitability of farming operations; support scientific measurement and analysis of the environmental sustainability performance of the sector that will facilitate competitiveness; and work with industry to target Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada efforts towards key business risks and opportunities.

Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication 3.10.2
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Increased understanding by the scientific community of water resources and nutrient management and the potential to increase efficiency and lower the potential of contamination of water resources Number of scientific articles accepted for publication through an external peer-reviewed process 75 articles by March 31, 2018
(2013–2018)

241

The Actual Results is  higher than the 175 articles reported on in 2014–15 Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy because of the increase in the number of submitted projects and in research results being accepted for publishing

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 3: Water Quality and Water Availability
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 3.10: Agri-Environmental Performance Metrics
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
3.10.3: Assess and report on the collective environmental and economic impact of the adoption of sustainable agriculture practices by farmers on the Canadian landscape.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption, and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.2: Research Accelerating Innovation

Description: This Growing Forward 2 program is designed to address emerging science-based requirements of the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector by generating and providing access to scientific knowledge that helps the industry to: identify and mitigate risks to agriculture and agri-food production; enhance the safety of the food system; sustainably increase its productivity to improve its bottom line through more efficient use of inputs; enhance the resilience of the sector to a changing climate; and to capture market opportunities. Objectives of this program include: conduct innovative research to understand key challenges and opportunities facing the sector; transform scientific knowledge into agricultural products, processes and practices that improve competitiveness; promote research to understand the key environmental sustainability challenges facing Canadian farmers; encourage the transformation of scientific knowledge into agricultural practices that improve the environmental sustainability and profitability of farming operations; support scientific measurement and analysis of the environmental sustainability performance of the sector that will facilitate competitiveness; and work with industry to target Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada efforts towards key business risks and opportunities.

Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication 3.10.3
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Agri-environmental indicators are available to assess and report on the sector's environmental and economic sustainability Regular reporting on the environmental sustainability of Canadian agriculture Full reporting of the Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture: Agri-environmental report series - Report #4 is planned for the 2015–16 fiscal year The Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture Report #4 was published on July 7, 2016

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 4.7: Environmental Disasters, Incidents and Emergencies
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
4.7.4: In accordance with mandated responsibilities, provide environmental and/or other information to reduce the risk of, and advice in response to, the occurrence of events such as polluting incidents, wildlife disease events or severe weather and other significant hydro-meteorological events as applicable.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 1: A competitive and market-oriented agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector that proactively manages risk
    • Program 1.2: Market Access, Negotiations, Sector Competitiveness, and Assurance Systems
      • Sub-Program 1.2.1: Trade and Market Expansion

Description: In accordance with the Emergency Management Act, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is responsible for developing plans to respond to emergencies in the agriculture and agri-food sector that exceed a provincial or territorial lead agency's capacity to manage. The Department will also support a response effort, as requested, from local, provincial, territorial, federal and/or international stakeholders.

The Federal Emergency Response Plan, which contains Emergency Support Functions, states that the Department may also need to undertake a number of activities, including assisting provincial and territorial governments in securing safe food and water, and agricultural commodities such as animal feed, through liaison with other government and non-government organizations.

Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication 4.7.4
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
A Federal Emergency Response Plan where the Agri-Food Emergency Support Function is accurately and adequately reflected Updates as required to the Federal Emergency Response Plan and completion of Annual plans Annually or more frequently, as required The Public Safety Canada-led review process is not anticipated to occur until 2016-17.  In preparation for this review, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada initiated background work to support discussions, including a review and assessment of the Department’s  current roles, responsibilities and capabilities
The Department is prepared to respond to emergencies in the agriculture and agri-food sector Lessons learned after every emergency event are identified and actions are taken to enhance the Departments preparedness for future events

Protocols and documents to support enhanced preparedness within the Department for sector-related emergencies are in place and updated as required
Ongoing, with key documents completed by March 2016

A review and assessment of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s current emergency management documentation suite was completed, with recommended improvements to be addressed

Action Reports were developed following each agricultural emergency event that occurred and progress on recommended improvements is being tracked

Phase 1 of the federal, provincial and territorial Emergency Management Framework, establishing a strategic approach to managing risks and emergencies facing the sector across the emergency management continuum is completed Development of guiding principles and a characterization of a risk landscape July 2015 The vision, expected outcomes, and guiding principles for an Emergency Management Framework for Agriculture in Canada, along with a characterization of the risk landscape in the agriculture and agri-food sector, were presented at the annual conference of federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture in July 2015, and endorsed by Ministers
A Livestock Market Interruption Strategy to support sector and government preparedness for a large-scale market interruption is developed Management and organization of regular conference calls and face-to-face meetings March 2016 The Department organized and led six face-to-face meetings and conference calls in 2015–16 to support the completion of the Livestock Market Interruption Strategy
A Livestock Market Interruption Strategy to support sector and government preparedness for a large-scale market interruption is developed Completion of a two-year work plan for the Livestock Market Interruption Strategy March 2016 The Livestock Market Interruption Strategy was completed, in collaboration with provinces, territories and livestock industry stakeholders

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 4: Conserving and Restoring Ecosystems, Wildlife and Habitat, and Protecting Canadians
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 4.8: Chemicals Management
Implementation Strategy: Leading by Example
4.81.1: Implement the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan and complete remediation and risk management activities at known high priority federal contaminated sites.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Program 3.1: Internal Services
    • Sub-Program 3.1.8: Real Property Services

Description: The Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan is a 15-year Government of Canada horizontal program with the aim of reducing environmental and human health risks from known federal contaminated sites and associated federal financial liabilities. This implementation strategy is primarily directed to Environment and Climate Change Canada’s responsibilities in supporting Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan. Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Contaminated Sites Program responsibilities include hosting the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan Secretariat, developing guidance and program policies, and providing expert support to federal custodians for the assessment and remediation/risk management activities at their sites. Sixteen federal departments, agencies and consolidated Crown corporations responsible for contaminated sites, including Agriculture and Agri-Food, are currently involved in the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan program as custodians of sites.

Implementation Strategy: Leading by Example 4.81.1
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Reduced liability at higher-risk federal contaminated sites Reduction in liability at all Class 1 and Class 2 Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan funded sites during Phase II of the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan $1.17 billion by 2015–16

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada contributes to this government-wide Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan program performance target

During 2015–16, the Department recorded a $208,000 decrease in liability associated with its two Class 2 Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan - funded remediation projects, resulting primarily from completing the remediation of one site

Reduced risk to the environment and human health from federal contaminated sites Number of Class 1 and Class 2 Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan funded sites where risk reduction activities have been completed 368 by March 2016

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada contributes to this government-wide program performance target with remedial activities at its two Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan funded sites

During 2015–16, the Department completed the remediation of one site, and continued the on-going remediation of the other site

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 5: Biological Resources
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 5.4: Sustainable Agriculture
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
5.4.1: Assess broad-scale trends in the capacity of the Canadian agricultural landscape to provide suitable habitat for populations of terrestrial vertebrates.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption, and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.2: Research Accelerating Innovation

Description: This Growing Forward 2 program is designed to address emerging science-based requirements of the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector by generating and providing access to scientific knowledge that helps the industry to: identify and mitigate risks to agriculture and agri-food production; enhance the safety of the food system; sustainably increase its productivity to improve its bottom line through more efficient use of inputs; enhance the resilience of the sector to a changing climate; and to capture market opportunities. Objectives of this program include: conduct innovative research to understand key challenges and opportunities facing the sector; transform scientific knowledge into agricultural products, processes and practices that improve competitiveness; promote research to understand the key environmental sustainability challenges facing Canadian farmers; encourage the transformation of scientific knowledge into agricultural practices that improve the environmental sustainability and profitability of farming operations; support scientific measurement and analysis of the environmental sustainability performance of the sector that will facilitate competitiveness; and work with industry to target Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada efforts towards key business risks and opportunities.

Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication 5.4.1
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
Agri-environmental indicators are available to assess and report on the sector's environmental and economic sustainability Regular reporting on the environmental sustainability of Canadian agriculture Full reporting of the Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture: Agri-environmental report series - Report #4 is planned for the 2015–16 fiscal year The Environmental Sustainability of Canadian Agriculture Report #4 was published on July 7, 2016

Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Goal 5: Biological Resources
Federal Sustainable Development Strategy Target 5.4: Sustainable Agriculture
Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication
5.4.2: Increase the awareness and adoption of sustainable agriculture practices that maintain or improve the quality of soil, water, air and biodiversity at farm and landscape levels by increasing the number of farms with an Environmental Farm Plan through Growing Forward 2 programs delivered by provinces and territories.

Links to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture:

  • Strategic Outcome 2: An innovative and sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector
    • Program 2.1: Science, Innovation, Adoption, and Sustainability
      • Sub-Program 2.1.6: Federal, Provincial and Territorial Cost-shared Environment

Description: This Growing Forward 2 program provides support for provincial and territorial activities aimed at supporting the Canadian agriculture, agri-food and agri-based sector and its businesses to assess and respond to priority environmental risks and manage the natural resource base sustainably. The programming is mainly designed to minimize and mitigate impacts and risks to the quality of soil, water, air, and biodiversity; supporting the long term health and sustainability of natural resources used for agricultural production and, the long-term economic and environmental viability of the agriculture industry.

Implementation Strategy: Advancing Knowledge and Communication 5.4
Expected Results Performance Indicators Performance Targets Actual Results
The sector is taking actions to minimize environmental risks and using inputs efficiently Cumulative number of Beneficial Management Practices implemented under Growing Forward 2 Federal-Provincial- Territorial Cost-shared programming 17,600 by March 31, 2019
(2013–2018)

4,579 Beneficial Management Practices have been reported for 2014-15, representing 26% of the cumulative performance target expected by March 31, 2019

Provincial and territorial annual performance data for 2015-16 are expected to be available in 2016-17

4. Theme IV: Targets and Implementation Strategies

Goal 6: Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Energy

Target 6.1: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction

The Government of Canada will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its buildings and fleets by 17% below 2005 levels by 2020.

Departmental Target: 10.1% below 2005 by 2020

Scope and Context: Targeted greenhouse gas emission sources include both facilities and fleet.

Link to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture: Program 3.1: Internal Services

Financial Performance Expectations: Investment will be made in capital projects with favourable financial payback and most affordable greenhouse gas reductions.

Performance Measurement

Expected result: Reduce the carbon footprint and energy consumption of federal operations.

Target 6.1 - Performance Indicator/Targeted Performance Level
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Updated greenhouse gas reduction implementation plan in place by March 31, 2015. Yes [Fleet plan updated February 2014 and revised April 2015, and building plan updated May 2014 and revised June 2015]
Greenhouse gas emissions kilotons of carbon dioxide equivalent (kt CO2 equivalent) in fiscal year 2005–06. 98.8 kt
Greenhouse gas emissions (kt CO2 equivalent) in fiscal year 2015–16, not accounting for renewable power emission credits, if applicable 86.1 kt
Renewable power emission credits applied in fiscal year 2015–16 (kt CO2 equivalent). -6.7 kt
Percentage change in greenhouse gas emissions from fiscal year 2005–06 to fiscal year 2015–16, inclusive of renewable power emission credits, if applicable. -19.6%
Adjustments made to base year greenhouse gas emissions [indicate if not applicable]. Not applicable

Strategies and/or Comments

  1. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s base year greenhouse gas emission levels were recalculated for the 2015–16 Report on Plans and Priorities (also previously recalculated in the 2013–14 Departmental Performance Report). As a result of periodic updates, the emissions factors for 2005 – the factors used for the calculation of fixed emissions – changed. Because of the 2014 change in the 2005 emissions factors, the base years for departments reporting on their facilities emissions required updating. As a result, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's base year greenhouse gas emissions were revised to 98.8 kt CO2 equivalent from 99.1 kt CO2 equivalent (originally 97.19 kt CO2 equivalent).
  2. The implementation plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions includes: conducting comprehensive building energy efficiency feasibility studies at candidate facilities with greenhouse gas reduction potential, and completion of retrofit projects; continued purchases of renewable power; fleet renewal with energy-efficient vehicles and implementation of plug-in electric vehicles and fleet reduction; and employee awareness.

Goal 7: Waste and Asset Management

Target 7.1: Real Property Environmental Performance

As of April 1, 2014, and pursuant to departmental Real Property Sustainability Frameworks, an industry‑recognized level of high-environmental performance will be achieved in Government of Canada real property projects and operations.

Scope and Context: Buildings over 1000 m2 owned by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada are mostly specialized buildings such as labs, greenhouses and barns and no appropriate industry-recognized assessment tools are available. The Department will continue to assess prioritized buildings using comprehensive, environmental aspect-specific studies conducted by third-party specialists with the continued goal to identify related environmental performance and opportunities for improvements.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada leases office accommodations through Public Works and Government Services Canada, and will support Public Works and Government Services' efforts at these buildings.

Link to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture: Program 3.1: Internal Services

Financial Performance Expectations: To be considered during the development of the Real Property Sustainability Framework

Performance Measurement

Expected result: An industry-recognized level of high-environmental performance will be achieved in Government of Canada real property projects and operations.

Target 7.1 - Performance Indicator/Targeted Performance Level
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Real Property Sustainability Framework in place to improve the management of energy, waste and water in departmental real property assets by March 31, 2015. Yes [January 27, 2015]
Total number of existing Crown-owned buildings (over 1000 m2) and new lease or lease renewal projects (over 1000 m2) where the Crown is the major lessee, as scoped in the Departmental Real Property Sustainability Framework, assessed for environmental performance using an industry-recognized assessment tool, and total associated floor space (m2). 0 Crown-owned buildings; 0 m2
0 new lease or lease renewal projects; 0 m2
Planned assessment tool to be used: not applicable
Total number of existing Crown-owned buildings, new construction, build-to-lease projects and major renovations projects as scoped in the Departmental Real Property Sustainability Framework, achieving an industry‑recognized level of high-environmental performance, and total associated floor space (m2). 0 Crown-owned buildings; 0 m2
0 new construction projects; 0 m2
0 build-to-lease projects; 0 m2
0 major renovation projects; 0 m2
Number of fit-up and refit projects as scoped in the Departmental Real Property Sustainability Framework, achieving an industry-recognized level of high-environmental performance. 0 fit-up and refit projects; 0 m2
Planned environmental performance level to be achieved: not applicable
Target 7.1 - Implementation Strategy Element or Best Practice/Targeted Performance Level
Implementation strategy element or best practice Performance level achieved
7.1.1.1. [Mandatory] Achieve a level of performance that meets or exceeds the custodian's current commitment(s) to sustainable buildings using industry-recognized assessment and verification tool(s). "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.1.1.4. Manage the collection, diversion and disposal of workplace waste in Crown-owned buildings in an environmentally responsible manner. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.1.1.5. Manage construction, renovation and demolition waste in Crown-owned buildings in an environmentally responsible manner. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.1.1.6. Develop an approach to improve performance of Crown-owned buildings via automation and commissioning. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.1.1.7. Develop an approach to training for building operators of Crown-owned buildings. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.1.1.9. Benchmark and report annually on the intensity of energy usage in Crown-owned office buildings using an industry-recognized tool. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
Best Practice
7.1.2. Real property managers and functional heads responsible for new construction, leases or existing building operations will have clauses related to environmental considerations incorporated into their performance evaluations.
"On track" to reach "Achieved" status

Target 7.2: Green Procurement

As of April 1, 2014, the Government of Canada will continue to take action to embed environmental considerations into public procurement, in accordance with the federal Policy on Green Procurement.

Scope and Context: The Department is focussing on three areas for greening its procurement: business travel, janitorial services and copy paper purchases.

Link to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture: Program 3.1: Internal Services

Financial Performance Expectations: Travel expenditures have decreased over the last few years, from approximately $20.6 million in 2008–09 to approximately $8.7 million in 2015–16.

Performance Measurement

Expected result: Environmentally responsible acquisition, use and disposal of goods and services.

Target 7.2 - Performance indicator / Performance level achieved
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Departmental approach to further the implementation of the Policy on Green Procurement in place as of April 1, 2014. Yes [April 1, 2014]
Number and percentage of procurement and/or materiel management specialists who completed the Canada School of Public Service Green Procurement course (C215) or equivalent, in fiscal year 2015–16. 33
73% of employees in the Purchasing and Supply group
Number and percentage of managers and functional heads of procurement and materiel whose performance evaluation includes support and contribution toward green procurement, in fiscal year 2015–16. 2 - Director, Materiel Management and Director, Integrated Services
100%

Departmental green procurement target: The Department will maintain until 2020–21 its greenhouse gas emissions from business-related travel to at least a 35% reduction relative to 2005–06.

Departmental Green Procurement Target
Performance indicator Performance level achieved

Emissions associated with business travel in kilotons of carbon dioxide equivalent (kt CO2 equivalent) in the year in question

Percentage reduction in business travel emissions relative to 2005–06 level of 9.1610.97 kt CO2 equivalent

Business travel is scoped to air travel only

Target statement updated in 2015–16 Report on Plans and Priorities to more clearly reflect the original intent

* In 2014–15 the method for calculating business travel emissions changed due to a change in service providers. Consequently, the emissions reported for the base year (2005–06) have been recalculated, from 10.97 kt CO2 equivalent to 9.16 kt CO2 equivalent, to allow for a "like-for-like" comparison.

3.29 kt

−65%

Departmental green procurement target: By March 31, 2017, 95% of copy paper purchases will contain a minimum of 30% recycled content and be certified to a recognized environmental standard to reduce the environmental impact of its production.

Departmental Green Procurement Target
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Dollar value or volume of copy paper purchases that meet the target objective relative to the total dollar value or volume of all copy paper purchases in the year in question 100%

Departmental green procurement target: As of April 1, 2015, 100% of all new contracts that include janitorial services will include the use of janitorial products that minimize the environmental impact.

Departmental Green Procurement Target
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Dollar value or number of contracts awarded that meet the target objective relative to the total dollar value or number of new contracts that include janitorial services for the year in question 100%
Departmental Green Procurement Target - Implementation strategy element or best practice / Performance level achieved
Implementation strategy element or best practice Performance level achieved
7.2.1.5. Leverage common-use procurement instruments where available and feasible. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status

Target 7.3: Sustainable Workplace Operations

As of April 1, 2015, the Government of Canada will update and adopt policies and practices to improve the sustainability of its workplace operations.

Scope and Context: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is focussing on sustainable workplace aspects that are expected to deliver the most significant environmental benefit with existing resources, as outlined with the implementation strategy elements below and scoped in the Department’s Sustainable Workplace Approach.

Link to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture: Program 3.1: Internal Services

Financial Performance Expectations: While not quantified, it is expected that these implementation strategy elements will contribute towards cost reductions.

Performance Measurement

Expected result: Departmental workplace operations have a reduced environmental impact.

Target 7.3 - Performance Indicator/Targeted Performance Level
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Approach to maintain or improve the sustainability of the departmental workplace in place as of March 31, 2015. Yes [January 27, 2015]
Target 7.3 - Implementation Strategy Element or Best Practice/Performance Target
Implementation strategy element or best practice Performance level achieved
7.3.1.1. Engage employees in greening government operations practices. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.3. Maintain or improve existing approaches to sustainable workplace practices (printer ratios, paper usage, and green meetings). "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.4. Minimize the ratio of information technology assets per employee. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.5. Select and operate information technology and office equipment in a manner that reduces energy consumption and material usage. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.6. Dispose of e-waste in an environmentally sound and secure manner. "On track" to reach "Exceeded" status
7.3.1.7. Reuse or recycle workplace materiel and assets in an environmentally sound and secure manner. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.8. Minimize all non-hazardous solid waste generated, and leverage service offerings to maximize the diversion of waste. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.9. Increase the population density in office buildings, and increase space utilization in special purpose buildings. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
7.3.1.10. Maintain or improve sustainable fleet management. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status

Goal 8: Water Management

Target 8.1: Water Management

As of April 1, 2014, the Government of Canada will take further action to improve water management within its real property portfolio.

Scope and Context: In the context of the Department's operations, water conservation is a low priority environmental area, and actions will be taken as opportunities arise.

Link to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Alignment Architecture: Program 3.1: Internal Services

Financial Performance Expectations: Potential cost savings for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's operations are limited.

Performance Measurement

Expected result: Water is managed sustainably in Government of Canada real property operations.

Target 8.1 - Performance Indicator/Targeted Performance Level
Performance indicator Performance level achieved
Approach to improving water management included in Real Property Sustainability Framework in place by March 31, 2015. Yes [January 27, 2015]
Amount and percentage of floor space in buildings over 1000 m2 that includes water metering, in fiscal year 2015–16 (where feasible). Crown, existing: data not feasibly available
New Crown, built-to-lease: not applicable
Major renovations: not applicable
Leases: data not feasibly available for leases of specialized facilities administered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Target 8.1 - Implementation Strategy Element or Best Practice/Performance Target
Implementation strategy element or best practice Performance level achieved
8.1.1.1. Conserve potable water. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status
8.1.1.4. Meter water usage in new projects. "On track" to reach "Achieved" status

5. Sustainable Development Management System

Departmental Sustainable Development Vision

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is committed to an economically and environmentally sustainable agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector. The Department's commitment to sustainable development flows from its mandate of helping the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products industries compete in domestic and international markets, deriving economic returns to the sector and the Canadian economy as a whole. Sustainable management of natural resources is a core requirement for an economically successful agricultural sector.

Managing Sustainable Development

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada activities extend across the value chain for food from farmers to processors to domestic and global markets. The Department invests in innovative research and development into new crop varieties, beneficial management practices and technologies that support sustainable agricultural production. Emerging economic opportunities, such as clean energy and consumer and market demand for environmental product attributes are also supported. Departmental efforts help address agri-environmental challenges such as water quality and water use, developing resilience to a changing climate, and maintaining ecosystem health.

Since jurisdiction over agriculture and natural resources in Canada is shared with provincial and territorial governments, programs and policies are based on partnerships between both levels of government. By considering the wide variety of environmental and socio-economic conditions across Canada, farm-level programs are uniquely tailored and delivered by provincial or territorial agencies.

6. Strategic Environmental Assessment

During the 2015–16 reporting cycle, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada considered the environmental effects of initiatives subject to the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals, as part of its decision-making processes. The Department applies Strategic Environmental Assessment to strategic proposals submitted to the Minister or Cabinet for approval that may result in important environmental effects, either positive or negative. The process generally comprises three steps, applied progressively as warranted, as follows:

  1. Initial Review – a review to determine whether there is any potential for environmental effects associated with the proposal or whether a previously conducted assessment still applies;
  2. Preliminary Scan – an assessment to determine whether important environmental effects, either positive or negative, would result from the implementation of the proposal; and
  3. Detailed Strategic Environmental Assessment – a more detailed analysis of environmental effects, including mitigation measures that could reduce or eliminate potential adverse effects or enhance potential environmental benefits.

Preliminary Scans and Detailed Strategic Environmental Assessments for policy, plan or program proposals include an analysis of the impacts of the given proposal on the environment, including on the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goals and targets. The results of departmental detailed assessments are made public when an initiative is announced. The purpose of the public statement is to demonstrate that the environmental effects, including the impacts on achieving the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goals and targets, of the approved policy, plan or program, have been appropriately considered during proposal development and decision making.

During 2015–16, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada achieved its Strategic Environmental Assessment commitments, including:

  • Fully complied with the Cabinet Directive in applying Strategic Environmental Assessment to strategic-level departmental policies, plans and program proposals;
  • Updated departmental guidance materials to ensure Strategic Environmental Assessment practices were in compliance with requirements of the Cabinet Directive;
  • Maintained a database to track and facilitate reporting on Strategic Environmental Assessments; and
  • Evaluated the impacts of strategic proposals on the established 2013–16 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goals and targets.

The Department applied the Cabinet Directive to 100% of strategic proposals put forward to cabinet in 2015–16. Of the Initial Reviews completed, four proposals went on to a Preliminary Scan level assessment. However, as the Department did not develop any proposals that warranted assessment beyond a Preliminary Scan, no public statements were issued in relation to Strategic Environmental Assessments.

In 2015, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada was one of four departments audited by the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development as part of the Report 3—Departmental Progress in Implementing Sustainable Development Strategies. The audit focussed on the Federal Government's commitment to strengthen consideration of the environment in its decision-making by more stringently applying the Cabinet Directive. The audit found that the Department had developed good guidance material and management practices for the application of Strategic Environmental Assessments to strategic proposals. In addition, the Department was found to have several strengths in applying the Cabinet Directive, including early consideration of Strategic Environmental Assessment in the decision-making process. The audit recommended the Department make improvements in some areas of its Strategic Environmental Assessment practice. As such, the Department continues to work towards improving the areas of its Strategic Environmental Assessments that were identified by the audit.

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