Energy, Mines and Resources

Risk Management

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Risk Management

The use of risk management decision-making is an essential part of the Fish Habitat Management System.

The System is modeled on a national Risk Management Framework developed by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.  In the Yukon context, that means that the System will look at the sensitivity of the habitat as well as the type and potential severity of effects of the placer activity proposed.  It will then determine the impacts of the operation and assess the risks.

The Risk Management Framework has two main components: the Pathway of Effects and the Fish Habitat Risk Assessment Matrix.

The Pathway of Effects describes all possible placer mining activities and all their possible negative effects on the aquatic environment.  It links these activities to mitigative measures designed to avoid the effects.  These measures would include relocation or re-design of a project.

The mitigative measures may mean that the potentially negative effects do not occur.  If this is the case, managers may make these measures a condition of the operator's license or authorization.

If there are still negative effects that can't be entirely eliminated, they must be assessed using the second component mentioned above, the Fish Habitat Risk Assessment Matrix.

The Matrix maps the sensitivity of the fish habitat against the potential severity of the negative effects from the proposed activity and sets out the regulatory requirements for each type of case.  In general, the rules for activities in more sensitive habitats will be more restrictive than those for a similar activity in a less sensitive habitat.

Risk Assessment Matrix

For the System, risk assessment matrices have been designed to cover four general categories:

  1. Sediment discharges
  2. Stream channel diversions
  3. Water acquisition
  4. Instream works.