DORVAL – 2023-06-27 – Transport Canada has determined that the project "Replacement of the defensive system at Pier 2 and 11 at the Port of Cap-aux-Meules, Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Quebec" is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects.

This determination was based on the following factors:

  • impact on the rights of Indigenous peoples;
  • Indigenous knowledge;
  • community knowledge;
  • comments received from the public; and
  • technically and economically feasible mitigation measures.

The mitigation measures considered for this determination are as follows:

Accidents and malfunctions:

  • An effective emergency plan in the event of an environmental incident, spill or fire relating to the characteristics and constraints of the project site and its environment must be prepared by the contractor and sent to all persons concerned, including the departmental representative.
  • The environmental emergency plan must contain the names of the persons and authorities to be contacted, as well as the measures to be implemented in the event of a spill.   This emergency plan must be submitted to Transport Canada at least five (5) business days before the start of the work.
  • All personnel at the work site will need to be fully trained in spill emergency response procedures, methods and use of relevant equipment and materials.
  • Respect a minimum distance of 30 metres from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to refuel, park machinery and store petroleum products. If this distance cannot be maintained, the contractor will be required to install an adequate secondary containment system to contain a potential spill.
  • Oils, lubricants, fuel and chemicals will be stored in a designated protected area on impermeable slabs.
  • Maintain complete emergency response kits (absorbent products, leak bags, stoppers, gloves, etc.) at all times near the work area to contain any spills. Secondary emergency kits may be required at some points on the jobsite.
  • Report immediately any accidental spill to the person responsible for the emergency plan of the project who will ensure that the authorities concerned are contacted without delay, that the affected area is contained, cleaned up and managed, in accordance with the laws and regulations in force, contaminated soil as well as residual soil left in place, petroleum residues and other hazardous residual materials,  if applicable.
  • In the event of an accidental spill of oil or other hazardous materials, it must be reported immediately to the following departmental official and authorities:
    • Environment Canada, National Environmental Emergencies Centre: 1-866-283-2333.
    • MELCCFP, Urgence-environnement: 1-866-694-5454.
    • Canadian Coast Guard, Alert and Warning Network: 1-800-363-4735
    • Site supervisor

Machinery and equipment:

  • Keep machinery and equipment used during work in good working order, clean and free from leakage of oil, gasoline or any other liquid that may pollute the environment and stop engines when not in use.
  • Use biodegradable hydraulic oil in machinery (hydraulic shovels) that will work within 30 metres of any body of water to reduce potential impacts on the environment.
  • Perform maintenance and refueling of vehicles and equipment 30 metres from a watercourse or wetland to reduce potential impacts on the environment.
  • Maintain and refuel vehicles and equipment on watertight surfaces to contain leaks and spills.
  • Minimize the number of hydrocarbon tanks for refueling machinery.
  • Fit, according to the regulations in force, fixed tanks, above ground, and able to passively collect and contain 150% of the nominal capacity, and equip them with a double wall with manhole to regularly check for the presence of a possible leak.


  • Ensure that water that has been in contact with unhardened or partially hardened concrete or cement (such as cleaning water from concrete mixers and other equipment) is not discharged into the aquatic environment.
  • Equipment that drips or runs off from cast-in-place concrete and concrete mixers must be trapped on-site by interception ditches, settling ponds, impoundments or other facilities.  The sediment must be able to settle and reach a neutral pH before the clarified water is released into the drainage system or can flow into the soil.
  • Carry out concrete work in such a way as to prevent the concrete and the particles it contains from reaching the aquatic environment.
  • Debris and concrete dust resulting from the work must be removed so that the material does not enter the aquatic environment. Any unused aggregate and concrete debris must be removed and the surface restored to its original condition once the work is completed.
  • Ensure that poured concrete is protected from rain during concrete work at all times.
  • It is prohibited to dispose of waste materials, volatiles or any type of contaminant by discharging them into aquatic environments, storm or sanitary sewers or the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Any waste or contaminant accidentally introduced into the environment, including the aquatic environment, must be removed as soon as possible.
  • Measures must be taken to avoid the dispersion of sediments during the work. If sediment dispersion is observed, work should be stopped immediately. Corrective measures will have to be proposed to the departmental representative. Their implementation will have to be done before the resumption of work.

Waste and hazardous materials disposal management

  • Provide a hazardous materials management plan (storage, transportation, disposal, recovery, control and decontamination measures).
  • Provide a plan for the management of construction waste by promoting its reuse and/or recycling. If they need to be disposed of, dispose of them at an authorized site.
  • Debris will need to be picked up as it is and has been placed in the appropriate containers to prevent its dispersion into the environment.
  • Remove from the site, throughout the work, unused materials, waste, debris of all kinds or other residual materials and dispose of them on an authorized site, in accordance with applicable regulations.
  • The Contractor must comply with all applicable regulations concerning the transportation, storage, handling and disposal of hazardous materials and hazardous waste.

Fish and Habitat:

  • Do not circulate machinery on the seabed.
  • For work carried out above the level of the high tidal high tide (GMSMP), implement effective measures to limit the input of sediment from the site to the aquatic environment and ensure their maintenance (e.g. sediment barrier, berms, sediment trap, sedimentation pond, temporary stabilization of slopes, diversion of water to vegetated areas). The measures must remain effective during the temporary closure of the site and during periods of floods or heavy rains.
  • When weather conditions deteriorate (e.g. high winds, storms, etc.), stop work to prevent the dispersion of material resuspended by the work.
  • No cleaning of equipment in the water of the Gulf of St. Lawrence will be permitted.
  • Implement a residual materials management system that takes into account their nature and provides containers appropriate to their nature.
  • Do not discharge any debris into the aquatic environment. All accidentally introduced debris must be removed as soon as possible.

Air quality

  • Limit dust emission by using dust suppressants, if necessary. Products must meet BNQ NQ 2410-300 "Dust suppressants for unpaved roads and other similar surfaces".
  • Ensure that the vehicles and equipment used are kept in perfect working order (e.g. exhaust system).
  • Turn off engines from unused construction equipment as soon as possible.
  • Optimize maneuvers to minimize the duration of operations.

Protection of avian fauna

  • The Contractor must take reasonable steps to comply with laws and regulations relating to the presence of migratory birds, including, but not limited to, the Species at Risk Act, the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 and the Migratory Birds Regulations. Some measures to minimize impacts on birds include:
    • Minimize encroachment into the natural environment.
    • Particular care should be taken to avoid disturbing or destroying any migratory bird nest.
    • Avoid approaching or disturbing any bird or a bird's nest if observed during the work.
  • Before work begins, check for waterfowl nesting on the structures where the work will take place. If nest(s) are found, notify the departmental representative immediately before commencing work.
  • If a nest containing migratory bird eggs or chicks is discovered near or in the work area, stop all noisy activities near the nesting site, protect the nest(s) with a protection zone. Immediately contact the departmental representative who will contact ECCC's Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS) to ensure the correct actions are taken.
  • On water or on land, stay at a sufficient distance so as not to disturb nesting birds. Signs that birds have been disturbed include an upright posture when brooding the nest, increased vocalization, and adult birds leaving their nests.
  • Avoid producing high-pitched or loud noises, honking or whistling, and constantly keep the engine at the same noise level.

Invasive alien species

*applicable only if equipment comes into contact with the aquatic environment

  • Provide proof of the origin of the equipment that will come into contact with the aquatic environment and demonstrate that it is free from invasive alien species.
  • Use clean marine equipment stored on land prior to completion of the work.
  • If the equipment is already in the water, provide written proof to the departmental representative that the equipment has remained in the Estuary or Gulf of St. Lawrence for the past 12 months or more and that it is free of EEE just before mobilizing it to the work site.
  • In the event that the inspection report confirms the presence of invasive species, the Contractor is required to replace the Equipment or carry out, at the Contractor's expense, a complete cleaning of the Equipment. The description of the cleaning work carried out will have to be included in the new inspection report (after cleaning) with all the relevant information mentioned above.

Health and safety

  • Maintain an adequate communication system between work managers and users and plan
  • The organization and mobilization of the site are planned in collaboration with port users to ensure smooth running of activities and minimize inconvenience for users.
  • Put in place a safety program specifying the signage that will be put in place and the restrictions on traffic in the various work sites.
  • Continuously monitor the cleanliness of the two access streets and clean them with a mechanical broom, when required.
  • Ensure continuous monitoring of vehicle movements associated with the construction site to avoid any encroachment on adjacent uses.
  • Restrict vehicular traffic and parking to authorized lanes and work areas.

Sound environment

  • Comply with current municipal noise by-laws and adjust machinery operations accordingly, if applicable.
  • Attempt to limit trucking and shut down machinery and equipment engines when not in use.
  • Use machinery and equipment in good working order to minimize noise.
  • Optimize maneuvers to minimize the duration of operations.
  • Take the necessary precautions to minimize the overall noise level.

Document Reference Number: 2

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