The NCC is the federal planning and coordinating agency for the National Capital Region. As such, it has approval authority over some projects in the region.

Before approving a project, the NCC must determine whether or not the project is likely to have a negative impact on the surrounding environment. As set out in the Impact Assessment Act, the NCC must perform this impact assessment before the project can be approved.

Projects that need an assessment

Within the National Capital Region, projects that require assessment under the Impact Assessment Act include the following:

The assessment process

The NCC reviews project information, and then looks at how the project may affect the components described below.

  • Natural resources: Species at risk, wildlife, trees, plants, soil, air, groundwater and surface water.
  • Cultural resources: Structures, sites. or things of historical, archaeological, paleontological or architectural significance.
  • Social conditions: Community well-being, infrastructure and services, land and resource use, and recreational experience.
  • Economic conditions: Industry or livelihood (e.g. forestry, tourism, agriculture, fishing, hunting, trapping).
  • Human health: Noise, vibration, air emissions, lighting, spills and exposure to hazardous substances.
  • Indigenous rights: Physical and cultural heritage, use of lands and resources for traditional purposes, or anything significant to Indigenous peoples

As part of the assessment process, the NCC may be required to post certain projects on the Canadian Impact Assessment Registry. In these cases, the public may review these projects, and provide comments for a period of at least 30 days.

Project assessments on the Canadian Impact Assessment Registry

To comment on project assessments currently posted on the Canadian Impact Assessment Registry under review by the NCC:

  1. Visit the Canadian Impact Assessment Registry.
  2. To refine your search, select “National Capital Commission” as the authority.

More information

Looking for more information about the Impact Assessment Act and how it applies to the NCC? See “Projects on federal lands and outside Canada: Guidance document on Sections 81 to 91 of the Impact Assessment Act

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