Race Rocks Public Advisory Board Meeting #2 at Pearson College, Metchosin, November 26, 2009: Minutes
|Doug Biffard||BC Parks|
|Chris Blondeau||Pearson College|
|Chris Bos||Sports Fish Advisory Board|
|Erin Bradley||Ogden Point Dive Centre/Dive Community|
|Ryan Murphy||Pearson College|
|Rosaline Canessa||Research Community|
|James Dale||Wildlife Viewing Community|
|Tom Gillespie||Friends of Ecological Reserves|
|Garry Fletcher||Race Rocks Ecological Reserve Ecowarden|
|Duane Freeman||Department of National Defence|
|Veronica Lo||Canadian Parks and Wilderness Committee|
|Angus Matthews||Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre|
|Martin Paish||Oak Bay Marina Group / Pedder Bay Marina|
|Aaron Reith||First Nations Liaison|
|Richard Taggart||Sports Fish Advisory Board|
|Tom Tomascik||Parks Canada|
- Welcome and Introductions.
- Adoption of previous minutes.
- Update of Action Items.
- Terms of Reference.
- Socio-economic Overview and Assessment Report & Values Input Table.
- Values Input Table (continued).
- Ecosystem Assessment. See 2001 report online:
- Next Steps.
1. Welcome and Introductions
10:10 Introduction and welcome by Chris Blondeau
10:13 Agenda review and introductions: Kevin
2. Adoption of previous minutes
The posting of minutes was discussed. DFO consultation secretariat website is where DFO would post minutes, agendas, etc. It was asked if they could also be posted on www.racerocks.com, and it was agreed that they could be posted in both places.
It was suggested page numbers be added to minutes documents.
There was also a request to revise the previous meeting minutes with respect to the discussion of DND contribution to the values input table, to reflect DND long term outlook and efforts toward sustainability.
Action Item: Duane Freeman will provide comments on the minutes
Action Item: DFO add page numbers to meeting minutes
Action Item: Once meeting minutes are finalized, they will be posted to the DFO website, cc’d to the rest of the RRPAB to distribute as appropriate.
It was noted that while there is a MPA page within the Oceans website, it is currently under construction and it would be more timely for DFO to provide the minutes to the consultation secretariat for posting at their site.
3. Review of Action Items
Kevin presented updates on the action items from last meeting.
DFO: change the powerpoint slide to reflect that the failure occurred in Ottawa
RRAB members: review and provide necessary edits/additions to the draft SECOA
The SECOA was added to this meeting’s agenda to obtain comments from the group.
DFO: powerpoint slide changed to Socio Economic OVERVIEW
Mike Waters: provide a DND danger template to add to Glen’s boundary slides
Duane Freeman will follow up.
DFO: add the multibeam data to the boundary map and send to RRPAB members.
The boundary map with multibeam data was circulated to RRPAB members, and it was displayed during this meeting as well.
RRPAB members: reassess the values from the previous process and provide edits.
Values list has not been revisited, as it was determined that discussion would be more useful once we are discussing conservation objectives.
RRPAB members: review and comment on the draft Terms of Reference.
Terms of Reference have been added to this meeting’s agenda for review and comment.
RRPAB members: provide / share links to their organization’s vision documents
Documents have been received from the Friends of Ecological Reserve and Pearson College. The Sports Fish Advisory Board is in the process of finalizing their vision documents and will circulate as soon as they are done.
RRAB members: agree on next meeting date.
A question was posed whether the First Nations had been invited to participate. It was responded that they had, but they had other commitments to attend to.
Kevin further discussed other tasks carried out since the previous meeting.
A presentation made by Glen Rasmussen to the Sports Fish Advisory Board was summarised. Kevin invited other RRPAB members to identify other opportunities for DFO to introduce the Race Rocks initiative as appropriate.
Kevin introduced a potential boundary reconfiguration, based on a RHQ review of the boundary suggestions as presented by Glen in the last meeting. It was suggested that the west side of the proposed boundary be reconfigured to include a small outcropping that is currently included in the Ecological Reserve boundary, but would have been left out of the proposed MPA boundary. This creates a polygon that is slightly more complex, and it is slightly larger.
There was discussion about how users would be able to distinguish the new boundary, as it is not depth based. The suggestion was made that there be a supplement that provided a “layman’s” approximation of the coordinate-based boundary. It was noted that the current Rockfish Conservation Area is contour-based, and fairly well understood in the boating community. It would have to be made very clear that the supplement was only an approximation and that the onus was on the user to ensure that they were aware of their position relative to the legally designated boundary. Marker buoys were discussed but rejected as they end up underwater at high tide, and may put a boat in peril if an operator tied to the buoy did not release in time. It was recognised that whatever boundary is selected there will be a need to develop a practical method of identification/awareness for different users. A suggestion was an outreach initiative similar to that for the RCAs which included books, supplemental guide and DVDs.
The boundary reconfiguration, as presented, was deemed acceptable by RRPAB members. It was noted that the SFAB has been instrumental in showing stewardship for the area, first by voluntarily recognizing a suggested boundary, and then by making compromises to arrive at an acceptable new boundary proposal.
There was discussion about the ability to revisit the boundary selection should new data be available in the future. Several noted the importance of available management actions being responsive to new information, and a potentially changing ecosystem, to ensure that the protected area remains relevant and effective. Others stressed that it is also critical to have consistency: a mutually-understood and endorsed clear plan forward, where the rules remain the same from one year to the next. Both values are important. Ecosystem based management is an approach that is endorsed federally and provincially and adaptive management is one principle of EBM. However, consideration of changes to previously agreed-upon decisions would require a re-evaluation of the impacts. Kevin noted that the proposed new boundary builds from the consensus achieved through previous consultations, including the MPA and RCA, and any major alteration to that boundary would require a new consultation process, including the evaluation and balance of socioeconomic, cultural and scientific values.
It was requested that buffer zones be considered for Race Rocks, as they have been used elsewhere. Kevin noted that the boundary of the buffer zone would be considered the outer boundary of the MPA, thus constituting a major change to the MPA boundary. In other MPAs an “in the vicinity of” clause has been applied but may be problematic.
Doug Biffard noted that at the management plan stage, once the regulations are finalized, there is the possibility to engage other agencies and coordinate their jurisdiction to respect the conservation objectives of the MPA. This may be the most effective way to influence activities in nearby areas that may have an impact on Race Rocks.
4. Terms of Reference
Kevin requested final comments on the Terms of Reference. Comments supplied by email in advance of the meeting were limited to a suggestion that the ToR remain consistent with that of the previous MPA proces. We need to finalise comments in order to have the document approved in DFO and posted to the consultation secretariat website.
A question was raised regarding the timeline: the Terms of Reference indicates a target of March 31, 2010. What happens if we overshoot the timeline?
Kevin noted that the timeline is a target, and we wish to focus on achieving the target, understanding that there can be unavoidable delays. The target is also intended to emphasise the length of commitment required from the RRPAB.
Suggestion: Section 4: In the final bullet remove “Board members can speak on behalf of the Board not on the behalf of individual members”, and keep the first sentence.
Action Item: DFO: Revise the final bullet to read: “refer media contacts regarding the activities of the Board to the Chair/facilitator”.
Suggestion: add to the purpose section text that reflects “at the completion of designation this advisory board will be disbanded and a management board will be developed. A new Terms of Reference will be developed to advise on management of the Race Rocks MPA” Potentially add the word “interim” management board, if appropriate.
A question was raised regarding the post-designation management board – is there a requirement to have a public interface?
Kevin responded that there is no requirement but the Act enables advisory bodies for public input where appropriate. Also, the management board would comprise representatives of interested parties, and the RRPAB can make recommendations to be considered post-designation.
Action Item: DFO: strike the comments (track changes) from the Terms of Reference
There was discussion about the appropriate way to address a dissenting view, should the occasion arise where consensus is not reached. Currently the Terms of Reference outlines the responsibility of members to attempt to reach consensus, and to clearly identify why they oppose and provide alternative solutions. It was determined that the responsibilities as written were appropriate, and that a statement be added under meetings that along with the final recommendation ALL opinions will be clearly recorded, including any members who were unable to endorse the final decision, in the event of non-consensus.
Action Item: DFO: add a sentence in the Meetings section that ALL opinions, including dissenting opinions and the reason why, will be recorded along with the final decision, in the event of a non-consensus decision.
A lack of clarity was identified with respect to section 8: timeline and section 7: deliverables. The language in the timeline statement currently directs to ‘tasks’ however there are no specific tasks listed. Also section 7 is a long list of deliverables and it is unclear if the RRPAB is to accomplish all of them. The clarification was that most are nearly complete, what is required at this time is to update the work from the previous round.
There was however commitment expressed around the table to achieving consensus. The varying viewpoints are important to capture both for DFO to assess how those views were considered and for stakeholder constituents to readily identify how their input was discussed.
Action Item: DFO: change the word ‘tasks’ to ‘objectives’ in section 8: timeline.
There was discussion to clarify what group, agency or association was represented by each member of the RRPAB. It was determined that Garry Fletcher, as the Ecowarden of Race Rocks, would be considered a conservation stewardship representative.
Discussion regarding the responsibilities of each representative included the suggestion that representatives be mindful that they are speaking for a group. This will likely require that the representatives do some coordination of messaging within their group (consitituency) prior to providing advice at the RRPAB. Examples included the Georgia Strait Alliance rep polling other ENGOs to make sure that there was a collective message.
There was also a recommendation that commercial fishing interests be represented at the RRPAB. BC Seafood Alliance was suggested.
Action Item: DFO to initiate invitation to commercial fishing sector.
Suggestion was made that Aaron Reith be considered as a government rep, as he is the First Nations liaison. It was determined that Aaron’s liaison role is critical, but not appropriately described as speaking for the First Nations governments. DFO and First Nations are in discussions to come to agreement on an appropriate relationship arrangement. First Nations can be invited to participate but ultimately must decide for themselves how best they engage.
Action Item: Aaron Reith to pass on the invitation to First Nations to consider participation on the RRPAB.
Clarification was sought re: which First Nations are currently engaged. Kevin responded that the T’Souke, Songhees, and Beecher Bay First Nations are currently actively engaged to develop relations between First Nations and DFO for Race Rocks. Other discussions are also being pursued with the Esquimault First Nations to discuss their interests as well.
There was a question regarding potential for a public open house – there are plans for a public open house in the consultation plan.
Action Item: DFO: revise the membership list to reflect the guidance of the RRPAB, email to RRPAB to confirm accuracy, changes as follows:
Chris Bos: replace “President” with “Local Chair”, SFAB
Aaron Reith: remove personal address and add email address
Tom Tomascik: address is incorrect, office in Vancouver
Transport Canada: in brackets “shipping” is identified. Shipping and air traffic are both concerns.
Rosaline Canessa: research – needs to be added
Transport Canada’s participation on the RRPAB was requested.
Kevin stressed that it is critical that we know what sector or group each person represents.
A suggested alternate for the Georgia Strait Alliance was Christianne Wilhelmson.
Action Item: RRPAB: each rep indicate one designated alternate.
Action Item: RRPAB approve membership list
Action Item: DFO remove addresses and post membership list on the consultation website.
Action Item: DFO to follow up with interdepartmental committees to stress the importance of having Transport Canada participation.
Action Item: DFO to investigate lower than 300m flights over race rocks as part of the DFO creel survey.
Action Item: DFO: the Terms of Reference Section 4: participants will be edited to reflect categories of representation rather than individual organizations.
Action Item: DFO: add categories: Research (includes academic and other research)
Stewardship (includes outreach and stewardship)
5. Socioeconomic Overview and Assessment and Values Input Table
Values Input Table
Objective: identify gaps and fill them if possible, or identify what groups may be missing to complete the table.
It was noted that further input from Federal partners was missing
Action Item: DFO to ask for Federal agency input to the table.
Action Item: Duane Freeman to provide DND input to the table
Action Item: Rosaline Canessa to provide Research input
Action Item: Veronica Lo to consult with other ENGOs and resubmit ENGO input
Action Item: Tom to brief Mike Fenger and ensure he connects with Veronica
Action Item: DFO: delete CRD and Metchosin rows as Race Rocks is not in the jurisdiction of either.
Action Item: DFO to contact Jacques Martin, president of Underwater Archeological Society for input into the table
Action Item: RRPAB: provide revised table entries 2 weeks prior to next meeting (early Jan)
Action Item: RRPAB: review completed values input table prior to next meeting.
Action Item: RRPAB: finalise values input table at next meeting.
Discussion regarding appropriate level of detail, and opinions within the table. The best choice is to have the comments in the table represent agreement within the represented group. If there are opposing inputs, they may all be included. It was also suggested that the values input table be made public as soon as possible.
There was general agreement for the suggestion that the outreach representatives could widely broadcast a request for input on their section, then compile a general submission, while other groups should expect that the information they provide for the table will be available to the public, but will not be open for public review and comment. Input that is best kept private if sensitive in nature can be provided to DFO as a supplement to the table.
Action Item: DFO: once RRPAB approves values input table circulate table to RRPAB members to distribute as appropriate.
It was noted that some information on the non-sectoral activities influencing Race Rocks as identified on the table can be found in existing reports.
Action Item: DFO to follow up on the non-sectoral activity entries.
Action Item: DFO to remove the underwater demo row, as this relates to DND activities which are represented in their own row of the table.
A query was raised regarding DFO’s ability to provide protection for Race Rocks beyond the water column. Kevin responded that the Oceans Act is not just DFO, it is a Federal agency Act, and that is why it is important for DFO to work through the regional processes to engage Federal partners. The Oceans Act as a federal tool provides DFO with the ability to coordinate with Federal partners to provide protection to an area that goes beyond that which is the strict jurisdiction of DFO. In the case of Race Rocks, the expressed intention of the Province of BC and DFO to work together to provide complementary protection strengthens the ability to ensure protection from rocks to seabed and in between.
A request was made to discuss next meeting’s agenda and provide time to discuss management measures. Kevin responded that one change to the MPA designation approach since the first Race Rocks initiative is the separation of pre and post designation work. Conservation objectives are drafted and approved pre-designation; these set the foundation for what needs to be protected and form the basis for post-designation management planning. Regulations identify prohibitions and exemptions based on what would be considered consistent with the conservation objectives. Management planning, to the detail of specific management actions, occurs post-designation, guided by the regulatory intent, the regulation and the conservation objectives. There was frustration expressed with the inability of the pre-designation process to develop specific management actions. It was noted that the RRPAB can make recommendations, as they did last time, for what they would like to see happen at the management planning stage. It was suggested that one recommendation should be to have the management plan from 10 years ago be reviewed prior to developing a new management plan.
It was also suggested that at the stage of developing conservation objectives a meeting facilitator may be useful. Also, timelines for each meeting section, deadlines for providing comments or materials, and objectives for each section would help.
Another suggestion was that RRPAB participants review other protected area initiatives, e.g. Parks Canada NMCAs and Environment Canada WMAs – their benefits and limitations – to compare with what is achievable through an Oceans Act MPA.
There was also a request for DFO to provide expenditure disclosure by the next meeting, for expenditures on Oceans Act MPAs nationwide, and in the Race Rocks process since 1999. There was discussion regarding whether or not this request falls within the scope of the RRPAB’s Terms of Reference, resulting in no consensus on this recommendation at this time.
Action Item: DFO: poll RRPAB members via Doodle to determine next meeting.
Summary of Action Items:
|Duane Freeman||send language cc the RRPAB to revise minutes|
|DFO||add page numbers to meeting minutes|
|DFO||Once meeting minutes are finalized, they will be posted to the DFO website, cc’d to RRPAB to distribute as appropriate.|
|DFO||Revise the final bullet to “refer media contacts regarding the activities of the Board to the Chair/facilitator”.|
|DFO||strike the comments (track changes) from the Terms of Reference|
|DFO||add a sentence in the Meetings section that ALL opinions, including dissenting opinions and the reason why, will be recorded along with the final decision, in the event of a non-consensus decision.|
|DFO||change the word ‘tasks’ to ‘objectives’ in section 8 timeline.|
|DFO||initiate invitation to commercial fishing sector.|
|Aaron Reith||invite First Nations Chiefs and council to consider a representative on the RRPAB.|
|DFO||revise the membership list to reflect the guidance of the RRPAB, email to RRPAB to confirm accuracy.Chris Bos, Aaron Reith, Tom Tomaschik, TC, Rosalyn|
|RRPAB||each rep indicate one designate.|
|RRPAB||approve membership list|
|DFO||remove addresses and post membership list on the consultation website.|
|DFO||follow up with interdepartmental committees to stress the importance of having Transport Canada participation.|
|DFO||investigate lower than 300m flights over race rocks as part of the DFO creel survey.|
|DFO||edit the Terms of Reference Section 4 participants to reflect categories of representation rather than individual organizations.|
|DFO||Add categories:Research (includes academic and other research)Stewardship (includes outreach and stewardship)|
|DFO||ask for Federal agency input to the table.|
|Duane Freeman||provide DND input to the table|
|Veronica Lo||consult with other ENGOs and resubmit ENGO input|
|Rosalyn Canessa||provide Research input|
|Tom||brief Mike Fenger and ensure he connects with Veronica|
|DFO||delete CRD and Metchosin rows as Race Rocks is not in the jurisdiction of either.|
|DFO||contact Jacques Martin, president of Underwater Archeological Society for input into the table|
|RRPAB||provide revised table entries 2 weeks prior to next meeting (early Jan)|
|RRPAB||review completed values input table prior to next meeting.|
|RRPAB||finalise values input table at next meeting.|
|DFO||once RRPAB approves values input table circulate table to RRPAB members to distribute as appropriate.|
|DFO||follow up on the non-sectoral activity entries.|
|DFO||remove the underwater demo row, as it refers to DND activities that are to be captured within their submission.|
|DFO||poll RRPAB members via Doodle to determine next meeting.|