MEMBERS UPDATE – Winter 2021
Message from the President
One year into the Covid-19 pandemic, the CSAP Society has fared very well and we remain a strong community. Operations have been notably resilient, as have our committees, thanks to our pool of highly qualified member volunteers. Our financial position remains strong, although submissions and revenues are [unsurprisingly] down this year. Many thanks again to Executive Director Catherine Schachtel and team, Nelly Pomareda and Anna Popova, for keeping the operations running smoothly. For the rest of us, our members and their companies have adapted in a similar fashion. We don’t need our offices as much as we thought we did but we miss being around our teams and clients.
Stage 13 amendments to the CSR, effective this month, have been a challenge for the Society, our members and stakeholders. CSAP is collecting data from our members and stakeholders on the effects of the changes. If you are experiencing issues please let us know email@example.com . We are sharing our findings with the Ministry and maintaining an open dialogue. There are many challenges to work through and communicate. I encourage you all to sign up for the webinars available through ENV on the revised protocols and Stage 14 CSR Amendments (Soil Relocation). Sign up for the webinars can be found here https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/air-land-water/site-remediation/site-remediation-news. CSPA also has a web page dedicated to helping members navigate the new ENV website. https://csapsociety.bc.ca/csr-stage-13-amendments-feb-1st-2021/
All the best,
Amendments to the site identification process under the Environmental Management Act (EMA) and Contaminated Sites Regulation (CSR) came into effect on February 1, 2021. Additionally, ten protocols have been revised as part of this amendment and the content from several guidance documents and fact sheets has been converted to webpages or included in the relevant protocols (e.g. Performance Verifications Plans). The ministry recommends that APs familiarize themselves with the changes and the implications that they have on their work. As part of the implementation plan the ministry is working on a series of webinars to be offered in late February-March 2021 to all stakeholders. The webinars will further educate practitioners on the amendments to the site identification process set out in EMA and the CSR and changes to the Director’s protocols. The ministry recommends that APs attend the webinars to improve their understanding of the contaminated sites legal regime.
Stage 14 CSR Amendments – The Intentions Paper for proposed regulatory amendments to the soil relocation process to support Bill 3 has been posted for comment here. The ministry encourages APs to provide any feedback they have to firstname.lastname@example.org using the comments form by 5 pm on March 15th, 2021. Webinars outlining the CSR Stage 14 amendments for soil relocation took place on February 18, 2021 at 11:00 am and February 25, 2021 at 2:00 pm. Recordings of these webinars will be available at a later date. Visit the ministry’s ‘Site remediation news’ webpage for information on how to register for the webinars.
Professional Reliance Operations Update – The majority of the provisions under the Professional Governance Act (PGA) were enacted by the provincial government on February 5th, 2021. Schedules to the PGA replace the legislation that previously governed professionals who are registrants of the following regulatory bodies:
- Association of BC Forest Professionals (ABCFP)
- Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of BC (ASTTBC)
- BC Institute of Agrologists (BCIA)
- College of Applied Biology (CAB)
- Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC, known as Engineers and Geoscientists BC (EGBC).
These regulatory bodies have updated their existing bylaws to align with the requirements of the PGA. APs are advised to check with their professional associations for further details on the PGA updates.
A summary of previous Ministry Clarifications is available here.
PAC is working with BC ENV to confirm the best path forward on submissions made after the CSR Stage 13 Amendments came into effect on February 1, 2021. This includes possibly streamlining P6 Preapprovals for Wide Area Fill and Flow Through/To sites and clarifying any P12 issues as it may relate to managing ‘High Risk’ sites. PAC will not have all of the answers that may arise out of current Performance Assessment, but CSAP and BC ENV are committed to working together to help expedite submissions in light of the recent regulatory changes. Prior to making a submission, members should familiarize themselves with the changes and seek opinion from colleagues is support of key decisions on the need for P6 Preapprovals or BC ENV involvement.
The Administrative Screener reminds you that a new SoSC fillable PDF has been released by ENV and must be used by Submitting AP’s. In addition, new SRCR, NoOM and NOIR have also been released and are fillable PDF and are also required for regulatory submissions. Members are reminded to visit the CSAP and ENV websites to download these forms.
Instruments have recently been seen which reference “Regional Background” in Schedule C of the Instrument. Submitting AP’s are reminded that the correct terminology is “Local Background” as referenced in Section 6(2)l of the EMA. Only in P4 does doe these substances get referenced as regional and in Section 2 states” “This protocol provides regional background concentration estimates for specified inorganic substances in soil in British Columbia as well as procedures for establishing local background concentrations in soil on a site-specific basis for use under the Contaminated Sites Regulation.
Forms for AP Submissions
AP’s are reminded that current forms must be used in submissions. Please check the ENV website to ensure you are using the most recent SoSC, SCRC, NoOM, NOIR and others. Older version of the forms submitted to ENV prior to Feb 1st are acceptable however the latest version of the SoSC must be used.
The instrument templates are currently under revision and are anticipated to be released in the Spring so please watch the CSAP Website
The TRC has been working on the following projects over the past three months:
CSAP Guidance for Assessment of Soil Vapor and Ambient Air Phase 3 – A competitive RFP process was run in late Fall 2020 and resulted in the awarding of the next phase of the soil vapor guidance to the team of Millennium EMS Solutions and Hers Environmental. Phase 3 of the vapor guidance will focus on five topics:
- Collecting samples representative of future conditions
- Sampling methodology/procedures (e.g., flow rates, purge volumes)
- Waste oil vapor PCOCs and their refinement
- Implementation of biodegradation attenuation adjustment divisor (BAAD)
- Sampling to determine preferential pathways in utility corridors
The draft report will be completed by May 2021, with the final report expected to be completed by the Fall.
Review of 10 Draft ENV Protocols – The TRC engaged 18 Approved Professionals with a wide variety of experience from 12 firms to complete technical reviews of the draft Protocols on behalf of the CSAP Society. The review comments provided are available in the Member Services on the CSAP website. ENV responses to comments have not been issued yet, but are forthcoming.
Review of ENV Soil Relocation Intention Paper – As part of the upcoming Stage 14 amendments to the CSR, ENV is proposing significant changes to the soil relocation process and recently released an intentions paper outlining the changes. The TRC has organized a review of the Soil Relocation Intention paper. Comments are due to ENV by 15 March and will be posted to the CSAP website when completed.
Arsenic in soil background assessment –As a result of the Stage 10 Amendments, practitioners identified that arsenic in soil is a challenge to manage at their sites. This issue was communicated to ENV and they asked CSAP to collect some more information on the issue. Over the summer the TRC polled our members to collect some more information and the results were shared with ENV. The next step is a workshop with ENV and a few CSAP members to discuss the information and identify next steps. The workshop that was originally scheduled for the fall was delayed due to the election but is now rescheduled for early March.
As a final note, the TRC is involved in helping administer the CSAP scholarships. CSAP awards three scholarships annually to graduates studying in the area of contaminated site investigation and remediation. The deadline to apply is 31 March. If you know of a suitable applicant, please direct them to our website here to find out more information and download the application. Scholarships will be awarded in May and announced at our Spring AGM.
If you have any suggestions for a topic that the TRC could tackle, please contact Christine Thomas, Chair of the TRC.
Salute to retiring CSAP member
We wish you all the best. Thank you for your time in CSAP.
Request for Examination Development Volunteers
The Membership Committee invites interested AP’s to put their name forward to volunteer as part of the examination process. The exam development panel will be selected based on experience and a range of locations and company affiliations.
Exam Developer: The time commitment is as follows:
- New volunteers 2-hours webinar on March 19.
[2 billable hour]
- Write 2 exam questions by Friday April 16th, write 3 exam question by Friday June This is a firm deadline; no extensions will be made.
[10 billable hours]
- Attend a 2.5-hour writing workshop on Tue April 27 (Numerical); Wed April 28 (Regulatory), and; Thu April 29 (Risk).
[2.5 billable hours]
- Peer review of questions
- Attend a 1.5-day exam development workshop on September: 14 & 15 (Numerical); 16 & 17 (Regulatory), and; 20 & 21 (Risk).
[13 billable hours]
Request for Experience Reviewers
The Membership Committee invites interested AP’s to put their name forward to review new candidate’s’ work experience and provide a recommendation.
We encourage past and present Exam Developers volunteers to be Experience Reviewers too.
Experience Reviewer: The time commitment is as follows:
- Experience Reviewers are paired to review each candidate’s experience presentation
[maximum 4 billable hours per review]
- CSAP encourages the reviewers to request further information to the candidates if necessary, and to interview them in case they still have doubts and the documents do not suffice for the application resolution
[billable time dependent on case-by-case basis]
- Provide experience review results
Due date July 16th
Please indicate clearly which category of Experience Reviewer or Exam Developer (Numerical, Regulatory, Risk) you are interested in by emailing back to email@example.com
To remain a CSAP member in good-standing
- Enter mandatory professional development hours through the CSAP Member Services platform by Dec 31st every year. There are two ways to enter PD hours:
Great job everyone for entering their PD hours for 2020! The on-line manager is continually being updated to make this process easier. We are working on it!
- Pay annual CSAP Membership fees (invoices will be issued in April, fix deadline for payment is June 30th late fee will be charged after that day);
- Provide proof of and maintain liability insurance (when insurance expires);
- Provide proof of good standing with parent professional organization; AND
- If your membership is up for renewal, submit one recommendation for a legal instrument through CSAP must have been submitted over the last three-year period.
An AP will not be allowed to practice as an AP unless ALL of these requirements are met.
CSAP hosted a Special Webinar on Feb 9th on Review of Professional Practice and New Regulation of Firms with special guest speaker Stuart Nash of the Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbian (EGBC) and AP Vijay Kallur. There are plenty of changes on the way at EGBC that will affect many APs. If you missed this important webinar, please view the recording at your leisure by clicking here:
You’ll also find recordings of past webinars:
- P22 and TG4 Soil Vapour
- PREPARING A CSAP SUBMISSION
- OMNIBUS STANDARDS REVIEW: REAL DATA – REAL RESULTS
- SLRA and GROUNDWATER MODELS
- PA and DETAILED SCREENING – Lessons Learned
- DETAILED ADMINISTRATIVE SCREENING
- TG4 and Trench Worker Attenuation Factors
You probably have heard about upcoming ENV webinars on topics related to the Stage 13 CSR Amendments effective February 1, 2021 and the proposed Stage 14 Amendments. We encourage you to register for these webinars at https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/air-land-water/site-remediation/site-remediation-news and find out the latest from ENV. If you have any questions or comments on these webinars or issues you would like to see addressed by the webinars, we’d be happy to forward them on to ENV.
And YES, we are working on new webinars on topics and will be setting these up after the ENV series is complete.
If you have an idea for a webinar, please send it along to CSAP!
Annual General Meeting
Planning is underway for CSAP’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held virtually on June 9 & 10 am 2021. This promises to another good one, and will include presentations on on-going CSAP initiatives and ministry updates. We are pleased to announce that Scott Orth will be one of our speakers at the AGM. Scott will be sharing tools and skills to help people stay resilient through these ongoing challenging times. His talk promises to be an engaging mix of neuroscience, mindfulness and Stoic philosophy, all aimed at providing you with practical, no-nonsense tools that work. Scott’s early career was as a hydrogeologist and included a number of years doing contaminated sites work. Today he is a mindfulness coach and trainer and the owner of Mindful Wisdom Inc. He gives busy professionals the tools they need to focus on what matters most and live the life they want. He does this by teaching them strategies to respond to the challenges in their day more mindfully, allowing them to be more focused, productive and happier. In case you missed it, here is a link to a recent article by Scott entitled No Bad Days! Just Good Choices and Better Habits. You can find additional articles on his website blog
Indigenous Awareness Training – BCIA
- A new requirement effective January 1 for all Professional Agrologists.
- All members will need to complete an approved course by December 31, 2022, a list of them can be found at the following link: https://www.bcia.com/news/indigenous-awareness-training-requirement
- There are numerous courses that satisfy the requirement with a variety of options (i.e. single day Zoom, online modules, multi-day courses, etc.).
Professional Governance Act Overview – EGBC
- A one-hour webinar reviewing the new PGA that came into effect on February 1. Webinar is scheduled for March 8.
- There is no cost to attend, however, you must register for an account with EGBC prior to registering for the webinar.
Modeling Groundwater Flow and Contaminant Transport at Mine Sites – EGBC
- This is a one-day webinar focusing on acid rock drainage and its impacts on groundwater and surface water.
- Webinar is on April 27 and seats are limited to 25 people. Cost is $329 / $379 depending on when you register.
Contaminated Site Fundamentals – GeoEnviroPro
- A seven-module course on the fundamentals of contaminated sites science, engineering and regulation. A Certificate of Course Completion is available after finishing the modules.
- Cost depends on how many modules a person registers for, $250 – $895, with a discount available for GeoEnviroPro members.
- Course begins on April 6 and completes on April 30.
Delineation, Remediation and Risk Management of Petroleum Hydrocarbon Impacts on Soil and Groundwater – EPIC Training
- Two-day online course focusing on investigation and remediation techniques for petroleum hydrocarbon impacts as well as a brief overview of risk assessment options.
- April 29-30, Cost $1,295.
Environmental Bioremediation – EPIC Training
- A web series including four webinars on various aspects of both in situ and ex situ bioremediation techniques and considerations.
- Hosted virtually May 25 – 28. Cost $560.
Basic Statistics for Environmental Professionals – Northwest Environmental Training Centre
- A three-day course focusing on the principles of statistics as applied to analysis of environmental data.
- Takes place online on March 30, April 1 and 6. Second course offering is April 27, 29 and May 4. Cost is $695 USD.
Clean-Up Information website – https://clu-in.org/default.cfm
- Sponsored by the US EPA. Hosts free weekly webinars focusing on contaminated sites-related subjects
- Some appear to be very US-focused from regulatory perspectives but still many technically-focused webinars and has archives of past presentations for free viewing.
- Has a searchable archive of free webinars (just requires some basic information from participant)
- Mostly focused around products and case studies of various remediation sites.
- Free weekly webinars on various topics.
- Also able to access past presentations for a subscription fee.
Putting the E in ESG – how will ESG affect the way you do business? Tony Crossman, CSAP Director
Although the pandemic has focused our attention on health issues, one issue that I emerging as a leading issue is ESG; and the environmental hot issue for ESG is climate change. It’s important to know what it is, where this is going and how this may affect you.
What is ESG? Environmental, Social and Governance, more commonly known as “ESG”, or responsible or sustainable investing, refers to a set of criteria that investors use to evaluate companies that they are looking to invest in. Environmental criteria can include things such as a company’s energy use, waste, pollution and natural resource use. The criteria can also be used to evaluate environmental risks that a company may face and how the company is managing those risks. For example, issues relating to the company’s ownership of contaminated land, how it disposes of hazardous waste or manages toxic emissions, and risks the company may face due to climate change.
Why does it matter? Investors are increasingly using ESG as a tool to evaluate the risks of investing in a company.
What is happening? Public companies are required to disclose all material information affecting their business; and environmental information may be material. In a review of disclosure, it was found that Canadian companies use boilerplate language or have minimal environmental information. The failure to disclose environmental risks has prompted legal action for better disclosure.
What is the hot environmental issue for ESG? Climate change has been identified as the most significant material environmental risk for many businesses. As the former Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, Mark Carney, was quoted as saying: “We can’t self-isolate from climate change.”
The Canadian Securities Administrators (the “CSA”), recently issued a staff notice on “Reporting of Climate Change related Risks” which reinforces and expands upon the guidance provided in CSA Staff Notice 51-333 “Environmental Reporting Guidance”. These material risks relate to both physical risk (such as extreme weather events or rising sea levels), and material risk the business faces in the transition to a low-carbon economy (including reputational risk, policy risk, regulatory risk and market risk, among others). In response, many companies are going beyond what is required by the law, and many are committing to net-zero emissions as a way to lead by example. This, in turn, may mean capital expenditures to reduce emissions and move to a low carbon economy (through process, technology, innovation), adaptations to changing conditions (eg sea level rise), requiring suppliers to make similar commitments, and buying offsets or credits.
What does the future hold? Looking forward, we are likely to see this reporting become more standardized, more regularly required (whether by shareholders or regulators); increased shareholder activism; and generally, ESG playing a more significant role and driver in business decisions.
The BC Environmental Laboratory Technical Advisory Committee Update, Cindy Ott CSAP representative
The BC Environmental Laboratory Technical Advisory Committee (BCELTAC) Bio accessibility Subcommittee is in the final stages of completing a round robin study to determine oral bio accessibility of arsenic and lead in two standard reference materials (SRMs) using an in vitro bio accessibility assay (IVBA). The IVBA is an approach for providing data for eventual estimation of the oral relative bioavailability (RBA) of these metals for use in human health risk assessment. The overall purpose of this study is to determine the suitability and acceptability of the samples as SRMs as part of a validated IVBA method for arsenic and lead for eventual inclusion by BC ENV in the BC Environmental Laboratory Manual. In a future phase of study, soil samples from contaminated sites in British Columbia will be evaluated (BCELTAC and the CSAP Society will be reaching out for volunteer submission of samples). Many thanks to Ross Wilson the CSAP representative on the sub committee.
There are new lab methods posted on the ENV website. APs may be interested in the following methods have undergone a public review process and are awaiting director’s approval.
- Silica Gel Cleanup of Extractable Petroleum Hydrocarbons – Prescriptive(PDF)
- Tetraethyl Lead in Water – PBM(PDF)
- Tetraethyllead in Soil – PBM(PDF)
Also, the following method has been posted for review and may not be used for numeric submissions but there may be projects where it may be used for risk-based submissions:
Business Council of BC Q3 B.C. Economic Review and Outlook
Economic Outlook https://bcbc.com/reports-and-research/the-race-between-the-virus-and-the-vaccines
ENV on the revised protocols and Stage 14 CSR Amendments (Soil Relocation) webinars