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Navigation Coordination Committee


Navigation Coordination Committee

A number of studies were carried out by various stakeholders involved with the St. Lawrence Plan between 1988 and 1998 regarding the environmental impact of commercial navigation and recreational boating. The Navigation Coordination Committee (NCC) was eventually formed in 1998 and is composed of representatives of the marine industry, environmental stakeholders, governments and the general public.

In 2004, the NCC issued its first Sustainable Navigation Strategy for the St. Lawrence. This document identifies a number of priority issues and sets out approximately 10 basic principles serving as guidelines for the committee's actions. An initial action plan for these issues was completed in 2010. The establishment of a dredging activity planning registry, enactment of voluntary measures to reduce vessel speeds in areas sensitive to erosion and a study on the impact of climate change on marine transportation are examples of projects successfully developed within the framework of this first action plan.

Subsequently, a second Sustainable Navigation Strategy has been published (2012-2017).

The nine issues providing the framework of this second Sustainable Navigation Strategy are :

  1. Consensus building – A perequisite
  2. Implementation of integrated management of dredging and sediments
  3. Evaluation of adaptation options for navigation with respect to fluctuating water levels
  4. Relative effect of the wake produced by ships and pleasure craft, one of the elements of the phenomenon of erosion examined in some sectors of the St.Lawrence
  5. Improvement of the management of sewage discharges and cargo residues for all types of ships and craft
  6. Reduction of risks of introduction and spread of exotic organisms by ballast water for all types of ships and pleasure craft
  7. Hazardous product and oil spill prevention and response
  8. Development of marine transportation in relation to its environmental and social benefits
  9. Protection of marine mammals

These issues will serve in identifying the objectives and projects to be collectively implemented by the NCC members. Some of these projects will be incorporated into the program of joint actions.

Committee on integrated management of dredging and sediment

Dredging and sediment management have been the priority issues associated with navigation on the St. Lawrence since the establishment of the NCC. A sub-committee on integrated management of dredging and sediment (CGIDS) was eventually formed to address these issues.

The CGIDS is mandated to improve the management of dredging activities in the aim of providing for adequate protection of ecosystems and public health while also allowing the development of navigation on the St. Lawrence River. To this end, it:

  • adds to scientific knowledge through applied research projects to support management of activities relating to dredging and restoration of sites with contaminated sediment;
  • develops tools and guides for various stakeholders involved in the design, planning, execution, assessment and monitoring of work relating to dredging and restoration of sites with contaminated sediment;
  • promotes cooperation and facilitates federal and provincial environmental assessment processes applicable to projects (e.g., assessment of fish habitat loss); and
  • enhances public consultation and participation processes as part of project review while also helping to build consensus among the various stakeholders involved in dredging and sediment management activities.

NCC Composition


Tourisme QuébecUsers

Port of Montréal Administration
Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiquesSt. Lawrence Ship operators
Ministère des transports, de la Mobilité durable et de l’Électrification des transports du Québec*Association maritime du Québec
Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du QuébecCorporation of Lower St. Lawrence Pilots
Fisheries and Oceans CanadaCorporation of Central St. Lawrence Pilots
Environment and Climate Change CanadaPower & Sail Squadron
Transport Canada*Quebec Sailing Federation

Environmental Groups
Les Amis de la vallée du Saint-LaurentShipping Federation of Canada

Stratégies Saint-Laurent


Réseau d'observation de mammifères marins (ROMM)

Green Marine

* Co-chair

CGIDS Composition



Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques du Québec*

  • Direction générale de l’évaluation environnementale et stratégique
  • Direction du suivi de l’état de l’environnement
  • Centre d’expertise en analyse environnementale

Port of Montréal Administration

Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

  • Fisheries Protection Program

Environment and Climate Change Canada*

  • Environmental Protection Operations Directorate
    • Environmental Assessment
    • Expert Support
    • Contaminated Sites
Environmental Groups

Stratégies Saint-Laurent

Transport Canada
Public Works and Government Services Canada
Canadian Coast Guard

* Co-lead