ARCHIVED - Explanatory Note
Repeal of the Emerald Ash Border Infested Places Order

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Description

Efforts to control the spread of the emerald ash borer (EAB) within Canada are currently managed by the Emerald Ash Borer Infested Places Order made by the Minister under the Plant Protection Act. The Ministerial Order (MO) defines areas of EAB infestation and restricts the movement of ash trees, nursery stock, logs, lumber, wood packaging or dunnage, wood or bark, wood chips or bark chips, as well as firewood of all species (regulated articles) outside an area of infestation. The MO is updated each year to recognize pest detections from annual national surveys.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) initially attempted eradication efforts for EAB, however these efforts are no longer considered feasible given the rate of spread of this pest. There is growing scientific evidence in Canada and the U.S. that EAB cannot be eradicated and the CFIA has shifted its focus from eradication, to management to “slow the spread”. EAB is now considered an established pest in the current regulated areas. The CFIA adopted a complimentary 'slow-the-spread' management strategy in 2006. Continued regulation of EAB is required and a more effective tool is now required.

As EAB continues to spread in Canada, periodic renewal of the MO is required to declare new areas of EAB infestation and to implement new restrictions to control its spread. As further spread of EAB is anticipated, a more flexible regulatory tool is required to allow for the ability to respond to new EAB finds in a prompt and efficient manner and to manage and control the spread of EAB. This approach will also provide for more flexibility to consider possible collaborative approaches to managing EAB in the future. The Plant Protection Regulations (PPR) are being concurrently amended to add EAB to Schedule II of regulated pests which will provide an enhanced level of regulatory control as the CFIA will be able to amend the list of regulated areas as new finds are discovered. With the addition of EAB to Schedule II of the PPR, periodic renewal of the MO is no longer required and therefore requires repeal.

By making adjustments to the management of EAB, the CFIA will be in a better position to redirect resources quickly to respond to any new or emerging plant health issues, such as a new plant pest. 

Alternatives

The PPR are being amended to add EAB to Schedule II of regulated pests as part of the CFIA's necessary response to Government of Canada's (GoC) Budget commitments to streamline services and adjust pest-response strategies. Accordingly, there is no longer a need for the MO, so it is being repealed. No other alternatives were considered, as full deregulation is currently not appropriate.

Benefits and Costs

Minimal savings may be attributed to the CFIA or GoC by reducing the need to issue individual Notices of Prohibition of Movement in the interim of new measures being put into place, and by eliminating the need for periodic renewal of the MO.

No additional regulatory burden, compliance or administrative costs will be incurred by industry or stakeholders as a result of this repeal.

Consultation

Although this amendment is a direct response to the GoC's Budget commitment, the CFIA had conducted previous consultations with industry and stakeholder groups concerning a revision to the MO to account for new EAB finds and a possible amendment to the PPR.

Direct reference to amending the PPR had been made to some partners and stakeholders with no noted opposition. Stakeholders did voice the desire for the CFIA to develop new, more effective administrative options to support its mandate, including possible amendments to Schedule II to the PPR to allow for a quicker, effective response to EAB finds.

The CFIA will inform partners and stakeholders of the change in regulations for the EAB with subsequent communications materials.

Compliance and Enforcement

Upon the repeal of the MO, there is no anticipated impact on compliance and enforcement in movement restrictions given that the regulatory measures and response will be equivalent with the addition of EAB to Schedule II to the PPR. The CFIA will continue its surveillance, regulatory, enforcement and communications activities across Canada.

The addition of EAB to Schedule II to the PPR does not add any additional restrictions or regulatory burden and simply mirrors the restrictions contained in the MO in a more permanent and responsive manner.

Contact

Mireille Marcotte, Ph.D
A/Chief Forest Pests, Forest Resources
Plant Biosecurity and Forestry Division
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
59 Camelot Drive
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0Y9
Tel.: 613-773-7270
Fax: 613-773-7204
Email: Mireille.Marcotte@inspection.gc.ca

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