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Canadian Navigable Waters Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. N-22)

Act current to 2022-09-22 and last amended on 2019-10-04. Previous Versions

Studies and Collection of Information

Marginal note:Minister

 The Minister may undertake any study and collect any information that, in his or her opinion, is necessary for the purposes of the administration of this Act.

Indigenous Knowledge

Marginal note:Confidentiality

  •  (1) Any Indigenous knowledge that is provided to the Minister under this Act in confidence is confidential and must not knowingly be, or be permitted to be, disclosed without written consent.

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (2) Despite subsection (1), the Indigenous knowledge referred to in that subsection may be disclosed if

    • (a) it is publicly available;

    • (b) the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of procedural fairness and natural justice, or for use in legal proceedings; or

    • (c) the disclosure is authorized in the circumstances set out in the regulations made under paragraph 28(1)(g.2).

  • Marginal note:Consultation

    (2.1) Before disclosing Indigenous knowledge under paragraph 2(b) for the purposes of procedural fairness and natural justice, the Minister must consult the person or entity who provided the Indigenous knowledge and the person or entity to whom it is proposed to be disclosed about the scope of the proposed disclosure and potential conditions under subsection (3).

  • Marginal note:Further disclosure

    (3) The Minister may, having regard to the consultation referred to in subsection (2.1), impose conditions with respect to the disclosure of Indigenous knowledge by any person or entity to whom it is disclosed under paragraph (2)(b) for the purposes of procedural fairness and natural justice.

  • Marginal note:Duty to comply

    (4) The person or entity referred to in subsection (3) must comply with any conditions imposed by the Minister under that subsection.

  • Marginal note:Protection from civil proceeding or prosecution

    (5) Despite any other Act of Parliament, no civil or criminal proceedings lie against the Minister — or any person acting on behalf of, or under the direction of, him or her — and no proceedings lie against the Crown, for the disclosure in good faith of any Indigenous knowledge under this Act or for any consequences that flow from that disclosure.

Agreements and Arrangements

Marginal note:Agreements and arrangements

 The Minister may, with respect to his or her responsibilities under this Act, enter into agreements or arrangements for carrying out the purposes of this Act and authorize any other federal minister, person or organization with whom an agreement or arrangement is entered into to exercise the powers or perform the duties under this Act that are specified in the agreement or arrangement.

Marginal note:Agreement — cost recovery

  •  (1) The Minister may enter into an agreement with any person or organization respecting any matter for which a regulation made under paragraph 28(1)(b) could prescribe a fee.

  • Marginal note:Regulations — exemption

    (2) If both an agreement entered into under subsection (1) and a regulation made under paragraph 28(1)(b) relate to the same matter, the regulation does not apply to the person or organization that has entered into the agreement in respect of the matter for which payment is required under the agreement.

  • Marginal note:Recovery

    (3) When the Minister enters into an undertaking with respect to a matter for which payment of an amount is required from the other party under the terms of an agreement entered into under subsection (1), the undertaking is deemed, for the purposes of recovering that amount, not to be a duty of the Minister under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Debt due to Her Majesty

    (4) All amounts payable under an agreement entered into under subsection (1) and any interest payable on them constitute a debt due to Her Majesty in right of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Spending

    (5) The Minister may spend the amounts received under an agreement entered into under subsection (1) in the fiscal year in which they are received or in the next fiscal year.

  • 2017, c. 20, s. 314

Registry

Marginal note:Establishment

  •  (1) The Minister must establish and maintain a registry in which information that he or she specifies is deposited.

  • Marginal note:Access

    (2) The Minister must make the registry accessible to the public through the Internet and by any other means that he or she considers appropriate.

  • Marginal note:Types of documents in registry

    (3) The registry must contain only records or parts of a record

    • (a) that are publicly available; or

    • (b) that the Minister determines would be disclosed to the public in accordance with the Access to Information Act if a request were made in respect of that record under that Act, including any record that would be disclosed in the public interest under subsection 20(6) of that Act.

  • Marginal note:Protection from civil proceeding or prosecution

    (4) Despite any other Act of Parliament, no civil or criminal proceedings lie against the Minister, or any person acting on behalf of, or under the direction of, him or her or against the Crown, for the disclosure in good faith of any record or any part of a record under this Act or for any consequences that flow from that disclosure.

Regulations, Orders, Incorporation by Reference and Interim Orders

Regulations and Orders

Marginal note:Regulations by Governor in Council

  •  (1) The Governor in Council may, for the purposes of this Act, make regulations

    • (a) respecting time limits for issuing approvals or for refusing to do so;

    • (b) respecting fees, or the method of calculating fees, to be paid for any service provided or any right or privilege conferred by means of an approval, exemption or other authorization under this Act and respecting the payment of those fees;

    • (c) respecting the issuance, amendment, suspension and cancellation of approvals in relation to works;

    • (d) respecting the water levels and water flow necessary for navigation;

    • (e) respecting the construction, placement, alteration, rebuilding, removal, decommissioning, repair, maintenance, operation, use or safety of works in, on, over, under, through or across any navigable waters;

    • (e.1) prescribing periods for the purposes of subsections 10(3) and 10.1(1) and (3);

    • (f) respecting areas contiguous to works that are necessary for the safety of persons and navigation;

    • (f.1) respecting places in any navigable water where stone, gravel, earth, cinders, ashes or other material may be deposited and the deposit of such materials in such places;

    • (g) respecting notification requirements in the case of a change in owner of a work;

    • (g.1) excluding any body of water that the Governor in Council considers to be small from the definition navigable water in section 2;

    • (g.2) prescribing the circumstances in which the Indigenous knowledge that is provided to the Minister under this Act in confidence may be disclosed without written consent;

    • (h) excluding any thing from the definition obstruction in section 2;

    • (i) designating any provision of this Act, of the regulations or of an order as a provision whose contravention may be proceeded with as a violation in accordance with sections 39.1 to 39.26;

    • (j) establishing a penalty, or a range of penalties, in respect of each violation;

    • (k) establishing criteria to be considered in determining the amount of the penalty if a range of penalties is established;

    • (l) classifying each violation as a minor violation, a serious violation or a very serious violation;

    • (m) respecting the circumstances under which, the criteria by which and the manner in which the amount of a penalty may be increased or reduced in whole or in part;

    • (n) providing for a lesser amount that may be paid as complete satisfaction of a penalty if it is paid within the prescribed time and in the prescribed manner and providing, among other things, the circumstances in which the lesser amount may be set out in a notice of violation;

    • (o) prescribing anything that is to be prescribed under this Act; and

    • (p) for carrying out the purposes and provisions of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Minister’s power

    (2) The Minister may make an order

    • (a) designating any works that are likely to slightly interfere with navigation as minor works;

    • (b) designating any works that are likely to substantially interfere with navigation as major works;

    • (c) respecting the construction, placement, alteration, rebuilding, removal, decommissioning, repair, maintenance, operation, use or safety of works in, on, over, under, through or across any navigable waters; and

    • (d) respecting the registry established under section 27.2, including specifying records or information to be posted on the Internet site.

  • Marginal note:Classes

    (3) A regulation or order made under this section may establish classes and distinguish among those classes.

  • Marginal note:Conflict

    (4) If there is a conflict between a regulation made under paragraph (1)(e) and an order made under paragraph (2)(c), the regulation prevails.

  • (5) [Repealed, 2019, c. 28, s. 61]

  • R.S., 1985, c. N-22, s. 28
  • R.S., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.), s. 213
  • 2009, c. 2, s. 336
  • 2012, c. 31, s. 321
  • 2019, c. 28, s. 61

Marginal note:Addition to schedule

  •  (1) The Minister may, by order, amend the schedule by adding to it a reference to a navigable water after considering the following factors:

    • (a) whether the navigable water is on a nautical chart issued officially by or on the authority of the Canadian Hydrographic Service;

    • (b) the physical characteristics of the navigable water;

    • (c) whether the navigable water connects to other navigable waters and, if so, how it connects to them;

    • (d) the safety of navigation in the navigable water;

    • (e) the past, current or anticipated navigation in the navigable water;

    • (f) whether there are Indigenous peoples of Canada who navigate, have navigated or will likely navigate the navigable water in order to exercise rights recognized and affirmed by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982; and

    • (g) the cumulative impact of works on navigation in the navigable water.

  • Marginal note:Request — addition

    (2) Any person may request that the Minister add a reference to a navigable water to the schedule by submitting an application in the form and manner, and containing the information, specified by the Minister.

  • Marginal note:Other amendment of schedule

    (3) The Minister may, by order, amend the schedule by amending a reference to a navigable water and the Governor in Council may, by regulation, amend the schedule by deleting a reference to a navigable water.

Incorporation by Reference

Marginal note:Incorporation by reference

  •  (1) A regulation or order made under this Act may incorporate by reference any document, regardless of its source, either as it exists on a particular date or as it is amended from time to time.

  • Marginal note:Accessibility

    (2) The Minister shall ensure that any document that is incorporated by reference in the regulation or order is accessible.

  • Marginal note:Defence

    (3) A person is not liable to be found guilty of an offence for any contravention in respect of which a document that is incorporated by reference in the regulation or order is relevant unless, at the time of the alleged contravention, the document was accessible as required by subsection (2) or it was otherwise accessible to the person.

  • Marginal note:No registration or publication

    (4) For greater certainty, a document that is incorporated by reference in the regulation or order is not required to be transmitted for registration or published in the Canada Gazette by reason only that it is incorporated by reference.

  • R.S., 1985, c. N-22, s. 30
  • 2009, c. 2, s. 338
  • 2012, c. 31, s. 321

 [Repealed, 2009, c. 2, s. 339]

Interim Orders

Marginal note:Interim orders

  •  (1) The Minister may make an interim order that contains any provision that may be contained in a regulation made under this Act if the Minister believes that immediate action is required to deal with a significant risk, direct or indirect, to safety or security.

  • Marginal note:Cessation of effect

    (2) An interim order has effect from the time that it is made but ceases to have effect on the earliest of

    • (a) 14 days after it is made, unless it is approved by the Governor in Council,

    • (b) the day on which it is repealed,

    • (c) the day on which a regulation made under this Act, that has the same effect as the interim order, comes into force, and

    • (d) one year after the interim order is made or any shorter period that may be specified in the interim order.

  • Marginal note:Contravention of unpublished order

    (3) No person shall be convicted of an offence consisting of a contravention of an interim order that, at the time of the alleged contravention, had not been published in the Canada Gazette unless it is proved that, at the time of the alleged contravention, the person had been notified of the interim order or reasonable steps had been taken to bring the purport of the interim order to the notice of those persons likely to be affected by it.

  • Marginal note:Exemption from Statutory Instruments Act

    (4) An interim order

  • Marginal note:Deeming

    (5) For the purpose of any provision of this Act other than this section, any reference to regulations made under this Act is deemed to include interim orders, and any reference to a regulation made under a specified provision of this Act is deemed to include a reference to the portion of an interim order containing any provision that may be contained in a regulation made under the specified provision.

  • Marginal note:Tabling of order

    (6) A copy of each interim order must be tabled in each House of Parliament within 15 days after it is made.

  • Marginal note:House not sitting

    (7) In order to comply with subsection (6), the interim order may be sent to the Clerk of the House if the House is not sitting.

  • 2004, c. 15, s. 96
  • 2012, c. 31, s. 322
 
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