Municipal Affairs and Environment

Federal Provincial Programs

Canada – Newfoundland and Labrador Water Quality Monitoring Agreement

  • administers, plans and operates both the Federal-Provincial Water Quality Monitoring Agreement (WQMA) and Real Time Water Quality Network.
  • maintains an ambient water quality database
  • conducts intensive surveys on an annual basis
  • ships water quality samples to the Federal environmental lab for laboratory analysis
  • maintains a site documentation database for WQMA stations
  • The Protocols Manual for Water Quality Monitoring Agreement (WQMA) Sampling in Newfoundland and Labrador outlines the protocols used by the province for water, sediment and biological sampling. The protocols described in this manual PDF are derived from the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME) Protocols Manual for Water Quality Sampling in Canada (2011). Though emphasis in this manual is placed upon collection of routine core ambient water samples, other sampling programs which fall under the mandate of the WQMA, or are conducted by WQMA staff, are also included.
  • jointly maintains the CANAL website that allows for public access to ambient water quality data with Environment Canada
  • produces contour maps for all water quality parameters sampled under WQMA
  • monitors trend analysis for NL ambient water bodies
  • produces interpretive reports on baseline water quality, variability and trends. Tools developed for this purpose include the Canadian Water Quality Index Calculator
  • monitors blue-green algae in ponds that are of noted concern to the public sector.

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Canada - Newfoundland Water Quantity Surveys Agreement

In 1975, the Government of Canada represented by the Minister of Environment and the Government of Province of Newfoundland and Labrador represented by the Minister of Environment signed a co-operative cost-shared agreement for water quantity surveys. The purpose of this agreement is to secure coordinated and standardized basic data to facilitate resource planning and management in general and the design and implementation of projects related to navigation, hydro-electric development, irrigation, drainage, flood control, recreation, domestic and industrial water supply and other purposes.

This cost shared agreement has allowed two levels of government to work cooperatively in the area of water quantity surveys.

A total of 65 stations are currently operated under the agreement. Of these 65 stations, 18 are designated as federal, 31 as federal-provincial and 16 as provincial. Sixty of these station provide coverage for the Island and the remaining five for Labrador. Twenty-Two additional stations are also operated under agreements with various agencies, mainly hydro and mining companies.

An additional fourteen contributing stations are operated by hydro and power companies. These are regulated stations and are used for the operation of hydro power plant reservoirs.

All stations are equipped with digital data loggers and satellite transmission, and provide real time data.

The Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment has developed and maintains a software (ADRS - Automatic Data Retrieval System) to access real time data.


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Canada - Newfoundland Climate Stations and Programs Agreement

In 1986, the Government of Canada represented by the Minister of Environment and the Government of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador represented by the Minister of Environment signed an agreement to formalize co-operative climate programs which have been in operation for many years under various informal arrangements between the federal meteorological service and the Province for obtaining climate data. In 1986, the Federal government's requirement for climate data was approximately sufficient to meet the federal need for regional and national scale data. Additional climate stations were needed by the Province for site specific natural resource development, flood damage reduction, pollution control and other provincial socio-economic programs.

As of March 31, 2005, there were 69 climate stations in operation under this agreement. These stations were grouped into 4 schedules: Schedule A1 - Climate stations established and operated by Canada as part of the Federal Climate Network, Schedule A2 - Climate stations established as a result of informal federal-provincial cooperation and operated by Canada as part of the Federal Climate Network, Schedule B - Climate stations required by the Province, and Schedule C - Climate stations and programs established to meet federal-provincial requirements for climate data. The number of station in each schedule is as follows: A1 - 28, A2 - 25, B - 12, and C - 4. Six climate stations are equipped with satellite telemetry for real time reporting of precipitation, air temperature and other climatic parameters. There are a significant number of stations which are operated outside of the Climate Agreement but still provide a climate message for the national archive. These stations include federal meteorological stations and stations established as a result of cooperation with other parties.

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