2 Roles and Responsibilities

2.1 Background

This section describes the organization, roles and responsibilities of the Canadian Coast Guard, headquarters, and its relationship with the Environmental Response program. It also makes reference to the primary working relationships between the Environmental Response program and the internal and external support agencies that assist the Canadian Coast Guard in the delivery of its mandate.

2.2 Canadian Coast Guard Headquarters

The National Strategies Directorate is responsible for identifying the overall program requirements and strategic direction for the Environmental Response program.

Incident Management, Operations, Canadian Coast Guard Headquarters, is responsible for implementing the program requirements identified by National Strategies, as well as guidelines and systems required to support the application of this Plan through the National Environmental Response Program Office.

The Canadian Coast Guard has developed an Environmental Response Concept of Operations, which is a framework for a revised and improved program. These improvements will be implemented by Incident Management, Operations, Canadian Coast Guard Headquarters with support from the Canadian Coast Guard Regions.

The Manager of Environmental Response will liaise with the Regions on a regular basis to discuss matters relating to the Environmental Response program. Furthermore, Incident Management, Operations, Canadian Coast Guard Headquarters, coordinates the implementation of the National Environmental Response Team and the provision of assistance to other countries.

The National Command Centre acts as a formal liaison between the Regional Operations Centres and Canadian Coast Guard Senior Management by way of communication and support. During routine business or in the event of an emergency, Regional Superintendents or their teams have the option to call the National Command Centre for support. National Command Centre duties include, but are not limited to, supporting marine emergencies to the designated personnel in the Canadian Coast Guard, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Government Operations Centre, all implicated Federal Operations Centres and providing daily operations briefings to the Commissioner and Senior Management.

The National Command Centre also provides operational support to Canadian Coast Guard Regions in the event of an emergency and is the main contact point for escalating a response to the national level, should the need arise. In these situations, the Regional Operation Centres will provide support to the Regional Incident Management Team. At the time of writing, the Canadian Coast Guard, National Command Centre operates during regular working hours and has a Duty Officer on call 24 hours a day. In the event of an emergency, the National Command Centre can be activated to operate 24 hours a day. In the upcoming months, the National Command Centre will attain 24/7 capability.

2.3 Canadian Coast Guard-Environmental Response Regions

The Environmental Response Regions are responsible for the operational delivery of the program by responding to marine pollution incidents as the Incident Commander for the federal government, with support by other programs identified in the Environmental Response Concept of Operations, within their respective Canadian Coast Guard Region. They are also responsible for ensuring that regional plans, personnel, equipment and procedures are in place and ready for a response.

Regional personnel will liaise with Incident Management, Operations, Canadian Coast Guard Headquarters, on the development of national policies, directives, guidelines and systems to support the application of this Plan.

2.4 Internal Support Agencies

There are various legislation, agreements and customs that establish operational liaisons between the Environmental Response program and its internal support agencies. For the purposes of this plan, internal support agencies are defined as programs and services within the Government of Canada that actively support Canadian Coast Guard preparedness and response activities. Please refer to Annex B1 Internal Support Agencies for a list of internal support agencies.

2.5 External Support Agencies

There are various legislation, agreements and customs that establish operational liaisons between the Canadian Coast Guard and various external agencies in response to marine pollution incidents. For the purposes of this Plan, external support agencies are defined as those government departments or agencies, excluding the Government of Canada, that actively support preparedness and response activities. Please refer to Annex B2 External Support Agencies for a list of external support agencies.

2.6 External Resources

External resources can be engaged by the Environmental Response program for preparedness activities or for support in conducting marine pollution response operations. Services that could be obtained include:

  • initial response to a marine pollution incident;
  • sustained response to a marine pollution incident;
  • facilities for the handling, transportation, and storage of the pollutant; and
  • providing resources where appropriate (e.g. personnel, equipment, vessels of opportunity).

External resources generally fall under the following two categories:

  1. Contractors: Private companies offering various support services may be contracted by the Canadian Coast Guard to either respond or augment the response to a marine pollution incident. All standard contracting rules shall apply in a non-emergency situation when contracting a private company. In an emergency situation, the Canadian Coast Guard may use its emergency contracting authority to enter into a contract with a private company.
  2. Response Organizations: Response Organizations may be contracted by Canadian Coast Guard personnel to either respond or augment the response to a marine pollution incident in Canadian waters. All standard contracting rules shall apply when contracting a Response Organization. In an emergency situation, the Canadian Coast Guard may use its emergency contracting authority to enter into a contract with a Response Organization.

The following Response Organizations are currently certified by Transport Canada:

Point Tupper Marine Services Ltd.
Point Tupper Terminal
4090 Port Malcolm Rd.
Point Tupper, N.S.  B9A 1Z5

Eastern Canada Response Corporation
1201-275 Slater St.
Ottawa, Ont.  K1P 5H9

Atlantic Emergency Response Team Inc.
250 Bayside Dr.
Saint John, N.B.  E2J 5C1

Western Canada Marine Response Corporation
201 Kensington Ave.
Burnaby, B.C.  V5B 4B2

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