The WQB seeks reassurance that the purpose of the
ments is not necessarily delisting an impaired use or an Area
Agreement will not be compromised by the material
of Concern. Canada should articulate a delisting process
presented in the U.S. and the Ontario Guidance. The
similar to that presented in the U.S. Guidance, including the
roles and responsibilities of federal and provincial officials
documents should contain clear statements to the effect
that locally derived delisting targets are at least as stringent
as the Agreement requirements and that satisfaction with
the agreed-upon local end conditions do not compromise
Agreement Requirements and Locally Defined Goals
the Agreement purpose. Such clarification and consistency
The Canadian and U.S. documents provide for local
will help ensure a common understanding and avoid
flexibility, and the U.S. Guidance specifically notes that it is
potential future interpretation problems.
not prescriptive. The documents discuss achievement of
locally defined goals that are linked to local sources, as
Binational Guidance and Public Reporting
opposed to sources outside the Area of Concern. When
such locally defined goals are met and local sources that
The Parties may wish to consider development of a single
contribute to the impairment are controlled to the extent
binational guidance document, applicable to all Areas of
feasible, then there are grounds for consideration of
Concern. They may also wish to consider preparation,
when appropriate, of separate documents, designed for
public release, that clearly describe the process, criteria,
The WQB is concerned that some wording in the docu-
and rationale for delisting a specific impaired beneficial use
in an Area of Concern or for concluding when a specific
ments is open to interpretation. For example, locally
Area of Concern warrants redesignation as an Area of
defined goals could be interpreted as less than full restora-
Recovery / recovery stage.
tion of beneficial uses, and that less than full achievement
of the purpose of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement
Surveillance and Monitoring
is acceptable. For example, the U.S. Guidance states that It
is recognized and permissible to determine that a beneficial
It is not clear in either the Canadian or the U.S. documents
use cannot be fully restored and delisting occurs when
that surveillance and monitoring have been undertaken to
locally derived targets are met.
confirm that beneficial uses have been restored, as called
for in Remedial Action Plan Stage 3, and delisting can be
Such decisions can be judgmental. For example, both the
U.S. Guidance and the COA Guidance present a criterion
that Remedial Action Plan implementation is complete when
all reasonable and practical implementation has occurred.
The U.S. Guidance continues, such decisions are reached
Unlike the U.S. Guidance, the Canadian documents do not
when the RAP Implementation Group and the local public
discuss a process for binational Areas of Concern.
are satisfied with current conditions and local recovery.
The U.S. Guidance allows for the delisting of sub-water-
Conversely, the locally defined goals and requirements for
public satisfaction may be more stringent than the Annex 2
sheds before delisting an entire Area of Concern. Canada
should consider such an approach.
The U.S. Guidance defines the IJC role through consulta-
tion with the director of the Great Lakes Regional Office.
The WQB seeks reassurance that the purpose of
Consultation with Commissioners may be more appropri-
the Agreement will not be compromised by the
material presented in the U.S. and the Ontario
The Canadian and U.S. documents would benefit from
Guidance. The documents should contain clear
editing to improve clarity, ensure internal consistency, and
statements to the effect that locally derived delisting
correct errors of spelling, fact, and quotations.
targets are at least as stringent as the Agreement
requirements and that satisfaction with the agreed-
Advice of the International Joint Commission
upon local end conditions do not compromise the
In response to the WQBs advice, by letters dated March 19,
2002, the IJC sent the following observations and advice to
the Parties and to Ontario.