2018-19 Departmental Plan
- 2018-19 Departmental Plan (PDF Version, 495.85 Kb, 37 pages)
- Minister’s message
- Chief Executive Officer’s message
- Plans at a glance
- Planned results: what we want to achieve this year and beyond
- Spending and human resources
- Supplementary information
- Appendix: definitions
© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, as represented by the Chief Executive Officer of Parks Canada Agency, 2018
- Catalogue No.: R61-103E-PDF
- ISSN 2371-784X
Our 2018–19 Departmental Plan provides parliamentarians and Canadians information on what we do and the results we will achieve in the coming year. This plan continues to deliver on the commitments set out by the Prime Minister in the November 2015 Ministerial Mandate Letter. Parks Canada is integral to delivering on these commitments, and I am pleased by everything we have accomplished to date. Looking forward to 2018-19, Parks Canada’s primary emphasis will be on enhanced attention to ecological integrity as the first priority in all decision making in national parks.
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our generation. Canada’s protected areas play an important role in helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change by protecting and restoring healthy and resilient ecosystems, acting as carbon sinks, and contributing to the recovery of species at risk. The Government of Canada is committed to addressing climate change, growing the clean economy, and protecting at least 17 percent of Canada’s terrestrial and inland water and 10 percent of coastal and marine areas by 2020 through an ecologically representative and connected network of protected and conserved areas. In support of this commitment, Parks Canada is providing federal leadership towards implementing a spectrum of Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas in Canada while continuing to advance work on creating new national parks and national marine conservation areas, including the proposed Thaidene Nëné National Park Reserve in the Northwest Territories, the proposed national park reserve in the South Okanagan-Similkameen in British Columbia and Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area in Lancaster Sound in Nunavut.
In Canada’s national parks, strict development limits are safeguarding ecological integrity; the first priority in all aspects of their management. In our ongoing commitment to protecting Canada’s heritage places, we will continue to work on developing an action plan for Wood Buffalo National Park, guided by the World Heritage Committee’s recommendations in collaboration with Indigenous partners, other federal departments, provincial and territorial governments and key stakeholders. This unified approach will make use of the best available science and Indigenous knowledge to ensure this park remains a treasured place with Outstanding Universal Value for generations to come. We will also continue to collaborate with federal departments, Indigenous peoples and stakeholders to advance policy and management tools to ensure the effective conservation and management of national marine conservation areas.
No relationship is more important to Canada than the relationship with Indigenous peoples. Working with over 300 Indigenous communities and Indigenous organizations across the country, Parks Canada contributes in a variety of ways to meaningful and tangible reconciliation in its heritage places. On February 14, 2018, the Prime Minister reaffirmed the Government of Canada’s commitment and announced an engagement process to chart a path forward on the recognition and implementation of Indigenous rights in Canada. To this end, the Agency will continue to take steps to strengthen partnerships with Indigenous peoples at Parks Canada places to include Indigenous voices in storytelling and commemoration; support ongoing connections with traditionally used lands and waters; implement shared governance structures that reflect Indigenous responsibilities for traditional territories; and work to develop authentic Indigenous visitor experiences.
Parks Canada heritage places are a great way for Canadians to experience the outdoors and learn more about our environment and history. In 2017, millions of Canadians celebrated Canada 150 with free admission to Parks Canada places. In 2018 and beyond, the Government of Canada is celebrating families with free admission to all Parks Canada places for children under 18. In addition, through participation in the Cultural Access Pass program, new Canadian citizens have free access for one year to Parks Canada places. In 2018-19, Parks Canada will build on this collaboration to increase awareness of what Parks Canada has to offer and will engage with new Canadians by hosting citizenship ceremonies in national parks and national historic sites. These youth and new Canadian initiatives are helping to build the stewards of tomorrow.
By encouraging Canadians to visit their national parks and historic places, and providing them with the information and means to enjoy them, Parks Canada inspires more Canadians to experience nature and learn about our heritage. In 2017, Parks Canada expanded the popular Learn-to Camp program so that more low- to middle-income families could experience Canada’s outdoors. Throughout the year, Parks Canada hosted 30 overnight Learn-to Camp events as well as 500 other Learn-to events and activities across Canada. In 2018, Parks Canada will build on this success by providing even more opportunities for Canadians to discover camping and outdoor activities.
The Government will continue to invest in infrastructure work on heritage, visitor, waterway and highway assets located within national parks, historic sites, marine conservation areas and heritage canals across Canada. Through these investments, we will improve the safety and reliability of our infrastructure while facilitating higher quality experiences that enable Canadians to connect with this country’s incredible natural and cultural heritage places.
Parks Canada places hold a special place in my heart, as they do for so many Canadians, and I am honoured to be the Minister responsible for Parks Canada. National parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas represent the very best that Canada has to offer and tell stories of who we are, including the history, cultures, and contributions of Indigenous peoples. Together, we must make every effort to safeguard these treasured places for future generations.
original signed by
The Honourable Catherine McKenna, P.C., M.P.
Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada
Chief Executive Officer’s message
Parks Canada manages one of the finest, most extensive systems of protected natural and cultural heritage areas in the world. We do not, however, do it alone; we work with provinces, territories, Indigenous peoples, communities, partners, and stakeholders. A major theme for 2018-19 is collaboration and Parks Canada is committed to continuing to forge strong relationships to deliver on its core responsibility of protecting and presenting Canada’s natural and cultural heritage. In the coming year, we will focus our efforts on conservation, commemoration, reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, connecting to Canadians, and asset sustainability.
I want to ensure that Parks Canada remains a responsible steward, active leader and reliable partner in conservation. The Agency will continue to positively influence the development of global conservation policy through bilateral and multilateral mechanisms, including the World Heritage Convention, International Union for Conservation of Nature, Convention on Biological Diversity, North American Water and Power Alliance, and G7 Oceans. We will improve the ecological quality of our places by putting a special focus on actively restoring or stabilizing key ecosystems. We remain committed to the collective effort under way to grow and strengthen Canada’s conservation community toward protecting Canada’s globally significant biodiversity.
We will continue to advance the commemoration of national historic designations by making progress in delivering on the Government of Canada’s commemorative plaques acceleration strategy and by engaging Canadians from all walks of life in the identification and commemoration of the persons, places, and events that have shaped this land and its peoples.
Building on past successes, Parks Canada is contributing to the whole-of-government approach to reconciliation with Indigenous peoples by integrating reconciliation considerations into day-to-day decision-making, program development, and planning. Parks Canada will implement a new approach to history presentation that is audience-focused and ensures that Indigenous perspectives and contributions to Canada’s rich heritage are reflected. As the federal lead of the Indigenous Guardians Pilot Program, Parks Canada will foster collaboration with Indigenous communities across the country to promote Indigenous-led conservation and the use of Indigenous knowledge in environmental and cultural heritage decisions within traditional territories.
Inuit played a fundamental role in the search for and discovery of the historic wrecks of the lost Franklin Expedition, and will continue to be key partners in the conservation, protection, interpretation, and management of the Wrecks of HMS Erebus and HMS Terror National Historic Site. In 2017, for the first time ever, an Inuit Guardian initiative was established for the national historic site. The initiative was a remarkable success and I will be proud to share this work with Canadians in the coming year.
Parks Canada places form important cornerstones for Canada’s local, regional, and national tourism industry. An action item of Canada’s new Vision for Tourism is to distinguish Canada as a premier tourism destination through Canada’s national parks. In 2018, Parks Canada will launch a national advertising campaign to diversify and maintain visitation, and to promote conservation with the ultimate goal of inspiring the next generation of Canadians to be stewards of our country’s greatest heritage treasures.
Parks Canada will also continue to innovate, expand, and diversify the range of programs and services available at its heritage places. We will encourage more Canadians, including youth and newcomers, to experience the outdoors and learn about our collective history, while highlighting Parks Canada’s mandate to protect these places.
Parks Canada is entering its fourth year of implementing an unprecedented infrastructure investment of approximately $3.6 billion in improvements to cultural heritage, visitor experience, and waterway and highway assets across Canada. These investments are helping to protect and preserve our treasured places, while supporting local economies, contributing to growth in the tourism sector, and strengthening their appeal as destinations in Canada.
I continue to be impressed by team members across the country who serve as the stewards of Canada’s natural and cultural treasures. Each and every day, they exemplify Parks Canada’s core values of competence, respect and fairness. As a testament to this, Parks Canada recently placed first among federal departments and agencies (and 41st overall) on Forbes’ 2018 Canada’s Best Employers list. I look forward to the year ahead and the great things we will accomplish together.
original signed by
Chief Executive Officer, Parks Canada Agency
Plans at a glance
Priority: Natural heritage protection
Parks Canada will expand the systems of national parks and national marine conservation areas, contributing to the development of an ecologically connected and representative network of protected areas, and to the achievement of international conservation targets. Informed by best scientific evidence and Indigenous knowledge, Parks Canada will conserve and restore existing national parks and national marine conservation areas, including by bringing enhanced attention to ecological integrity as a first priority in all decision-making in national parks.
Priority: Cultural heritage protection
Parks Canada will ensure that places, persons and events of importance to Canadians are formally recognized, take measures to safeguard Canada’s historical and archaeological objects, cultural landscapes and archaeological sites and improve the condition of heritage structures.
Priority: Connecting to Canadians
Parks Canada welcomes all Canadians to visit, connect to and value their natural and cultural heritage. The Agency will encourage Canadians to experience national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas and to learn more about the environment and Canada’s heritage. The visitor experience will include a focus on connection to nature and history. Parks Canada will provide visitor experiences that attract a broader diversity of Canadians, including youth and urban Canadians. The Agency will continue to be a key player in supporting tourism in Canada and work with nearby communities to foster economic opportunities. In addition, Parks Canada will work with Indigenous communities on opportunities for interpretive and storytelling programs rooted in traditional activities and knowledge.
Priority: Asset sustainability
Parks Canada will continue to implement infrastructure projects to address deferred work and improve the condition of its contemporary assets and heritage structures. The Agency will also continue to make progress on a sustainable asset plan to protect cultural heritage and support program and service delivery for the long term.
For more information on the Parks Canada Agency’s plans, priorities and the planned results, see the
“Planned results” section of this report.
Planned results: what we want to achieve this year and beyond
Protecting and presenting Canada’s natural and cultural heritage
Establish national parks and national marine conservation areas; designate places, persons and events of national historic significance; protect and conserve natural and cultural heritage guided by science and Indigenous knowledge; provide opportunities to visit, experience and enjoy Canada’s natural and cultural heritage; work with the public, other federal departments, provinces, territories, Indigenous peoples, and stakeholders to carry out these responsibilities.
In carrying out its core responsibility, Parks Canada will advance three Departmental Results:
- Canada’s natural heritage is protected for future generations
- Canada’s cultural heritage is protected for future generations
- People connect to and experience Canada’s natural and cultural heritage in ways that are meaningful to them
Parks Canada is guided by four priorities to achieve Departmental Results:
- Natural Heritage Protection
- Cultural Heritage Protection
- Connecting to Canadians
- Asset Sustainability
In delivering on these results, Parks Canada contributes to the following government-wide priorities:
- A clean environment and a strong economy
- Open and transparent government
- Social inclusion and diversity
- Reconciliation with Indigenous peoples
- Develop Canada's National Parks system
- Develop Parks Canada programs and services so that more Canadians can experience our National Parks
- Make admission free for children under 18 and new citizens
- Expand Learn-to Camp programs
- Protect our National Parks by limiting development within them and help local eco-tourism industries (in collaboration with Innovation, Science and Economic Development under the Small Business and Tourism portfolio)
- Enhance protection of Canada's endangered species (in collaboration with Canadian Wildlife Services)
- Increase the proportion of Canada's marine and coastal areas that are protected to five percent by 2017, and ten percent by 2020 (in collaboration with Fisheries and Oceans and Canadian Wildlife Services)
Departmental Result 1: Canada’s natural heritage is protected for future generations
- In 2010, Canada agreed to conservation targets adopted under the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity to conserve at least 10 percent of coastal and marine areas and 17 percent of terrestrial areas and inland water through effectively managed networks of protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures by 2020
- The boundary for the proposed Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area, announced on August 14, 2017, contributed to the achievement of the Government of Canada’s commitment to protect five percent of Canada’s marine and coastal areas by 2017 and will be confirmed once an Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreement is finalized
- Continue to play an important role as the national lead for the Programme of Work on Protected Areas under the Convention on Biological Diversity in the Pathway to Canada Target 1 initiative.
- Support the recognition and implementation of a spectrum of Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas.
- Work to expand the national parks system and to protect marine and coastal areas as a contribution to the government’s commitment to Target 1 including:
- Thaidene Nëné National Park Reserve (located in the East Arm of the Great Slave Lake of the Northwest Territories): Confirm a final boundary, conclude negotiation of establishment agreements with the Government of the Northwest Territories and Łutsël K’e Dene First Nation, and an Impact and Benefit Agreement with the Northwest Territories Métis Nation, and draft legislation to formally protect the area under the Canada National Parks Act.
- South Okanagan-Similkameen National Park Reserve (Interior Dry Plateau natural region): Confirm a final boundary and governance approach for a national park reserve in collaboration with the British Columbia government and local First Nations, followed by negotiation of the relevant establishment agreement(s).
- Manitoba Lowlands National Park: Conclude the ongoing feasibility assessment for a proposed national park in the Interlake region.
- Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area (in Lancaster Sound in Nunavut): Conclude negotiations of an Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreement with the Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA).
- Last Ice (in Arctic Basin in Nunavut): Launch a feasibility assessment for a national marine conservation area.
- Proposed national marine conservation areas (Southern Strait of Georgia area of British Columbia and the Îles de la Madeleine located in the Gulf of St. Lawrence): Conclude existing and ongoing feasibility assessments.
- Other national marine conservation area proposals in unrepresented marine regions: Conclude feasibility assessments and determine final boundaries for new proposals including for a site in eastern James Bay, that both Parks Canada and the Cree Nation Government agree would represent this region and form the basis of a cooperative management arrangement, and for a site in western Hudson Bay. Work with the Nunatsiavut Government and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador on the Imappivut (Our Water) initiative regarding oceans management in northern Labrador within the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area. As Parks Canada and the Nunatsiavut Government have identified a potential national marine conservation area offshore of Torngat Mountains National Park, working on Imappivut may offer a means to initiate work on this marine proposal.
Examples of projects in 2018-19 include:
- Managing non-native European fallow deer for forest restoration in Gulf Islands National Park Reserve
- Increasing the population of the St. Lawrence Aster, a rare flower, in Kouchibouguac National Park
- Parks Canada is publishing the data used to assess ecological integrity on the Government of Canada’s Open Data portal to be transparent and accountable to Canadians
- Completed 76 recovery plans for species at risk
- Passed legislation making ecological integrity the first priority in the management of the Rouge National Urban Park
- Reprioritize the Conservation and Restoration Program to fund projects that focus on ecosystems that can be restored or stabilized as early as 2018-19. This program funds prescribed fire, species recovery and other types of restoration initiatives to make park ecosystems healthier. A science-based ecological integrity monitoring program is used to prioritize ecosystems to restore.
- Develop an action plan for Wood Buffalo National Park guided by the World Heritage Committee’s recommendations in collaboration with Indigenous partners, other federal departments, provincial and territorial governments and key stakeholders. This unified approach will make use of the best available science and Indigenous knowledge―ensuring the future of Wood Buffalo National Park remains a treasured place with Outstanding Universal Value for generations to come.
- Work with partner organizations and specialists to refine tools and approaches, including an adaptation framework, regional reports and workshops, to better understand and support climate change adaptation in parks and protected areas in Canada.
- Support the development of site-based action plans for species at risk in compliance with the Species at Risk Act and demonstrate federal leadership for land use management and species recovery through an active program of implementation and restoration.
- Continue to demonstrate national leadership in managing human/wildlife conflict, hyper abundant species, alien invasive species and wildfire.
- Continue to work with other federal departments, Indigenous peoples and stakeholders to advance policy and management tools to ensure the effective conservation and management of national marine conservation areas. Parks Canada will also continue to implement a pilot monitoring program enabling the Agency to better understand the state of the national marine conservation area system and more effectively manage these areas.
- Respond to new legislative direction for impact assessment in Canada and collaborate with other government departments in developing whole-of-government approaches to implementing this new legislation.
- Currently 20 heritage places have cooperative management arrangements where Indigenous partners play a decision-making role in the heritage place
- Aims to promote Indigenous-led conservation and Indigenous knowledge in decision-making in areas such as: wildlife, fisheries, forestry, mining and tourism
- Key objective is to support new and existing Guardian programs starting in summer 2018
- Advance cooperative management with Indigenous peoples at heritage places by establishing new cooperative management structures or transitioning existing relationship-building structures to bodies that provide Indigenous peoples with decision-making roles.
- Act as federal lead on the Indigenous Guardians Pilot Program, a five-year, $25 million program announced in Budget 2017 to support Indigenous Nations and communities in exercising their responsibilities within their traditional territories.
Departmental Result 2: Canada’s cultural heritage is protected for future generations
- Since 2016, 200 commemorative plaque unveiling ceremonies have taken place
- 8 new places added to Canada’s Tentative List for UNESCO World Heritage recognition as a result of submissions/applications by Canadians
- Replace Parks Canada’s National Historic Sites of Canada System Plan with a new framework and implement a new approach to history presentation at Parks Canada places.
- Continue the ambitious undertaking of accelerating the commemoration of national historic designations by carrying out 80 commemorative plaque unveiling ceremonies in 2018.
- Put forward two nominations for UNESCO World Heritage recognition in July 2018, including Pimachiowin Aki, a cultural landscape under Indigenous stewardship.
- Restoration of Dauphin Quay Wall―primary sea barrier―Fortress of Louisbourg NHS
- Rehabilitation and conservation work on the barracks―Fort Lennox NHS
- Restoration of the heritage character-defining elements of several federal heritage buildings―Riding Mountain NP
- Rehabilitation of the Dawson Former Territorial Courthouse―Klondike NHS
- Rehabilitation of rock masonry―Rideau Canal NHS Edmonds Lock/Weir
- Rehabilitation of several locks―Chambly Canal NHS
- Undertake various actions to better protect the heritage value of cultural resources in a sustainable manner including work to advance consolidating Parks Canada’s collection of historical and archaeological objects―one of the largest in North America―to a new purpose built collection facility in Gatineau, Quebec. This will ensure that the collection is safeguarded and accessible for present and future generations.
- Continue to develop a strategy for preventive conservation, a cost-effective, evidence-based and sustainable approach to identify and reduce potential hazards to cultural resources.
- Deploy a new marine research vessel, the David Thompson, to support underwater and terrestrial archaeology, ecological and climate change research in Canada’s coastal sites including the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror in 2018. In future, the vessel will also be used to return to the wreck of HMS Investigator and to carry out marine biology and survey projects in Lancaster Sound.
- Provide financial assistance to support the protection and presentation of nationally recognized heritage places not administered by the federal government through Parks Canada’s National Cost-Sharing Program for Heritage Places.
- Respond to the recommendations of the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development report “Preserving Canada’s Heritage: the Foundation for Tomorrow” on the conservation of built heritage in Canada.
- Continue to support the conservation of cultural heritage under the responsibility of other government departments through Parks Canada’s Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office. Parks Canada will continue to work closely with custodian departments to complete the increased number of reviews of interventions as a result of federal infrastructure projects currently underway across the government.
- Continue investments to improve the condition of heritage structures at heritage places including Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site, Fort Lennox National Historic Site, Riding Mountain National Park, Dawson Courthouse, Edmonds Lock/Weir on the Rideau Canal National Historic Site, and several locks on the Chambly Canal National Historic Site. As part of this work, Parks Canada’s heritage conservation professionals will continue to support the protection of cultural resources in infrastructure projects and conduct impact analysis to identify and mitigate potential threats.
- Work with the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada to respond to Call to Action 79 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. This includes working with Residential School Survivors, Indigenous organizations and the arts community to revise the policies, criteria, and practices of the National Program of Historical Commemoration to integrate Indigenous history, heritage values, and memory practices into Canada’s heritage and history.
- Update the strategic priorities for historical commemoration to reflect Canada's diversity with a focus on ensuring Indigenous perspectives and contributions to Canada's history are present and acknowledged.
Departmental Result 3: People connect to and experience Canada’s natural and cultural heritage in ways that are meaningful to them
- Over 8.5 million free Parks Canada Discovery Passes were distributed in 2017―90% went to Canadians
- Reached over 20 million people in 2017 by launching multiple social media campaigns― #showusyourpass and #parkschallenge
- Reached 100,000 followers on Instagram by the end of 2017―almost double the initial target
- New features and content will be added to the mobile app which was launched in 2017 and downloaded over 170,000 times
- Increased traffic to Parks Canada’s website by 54 percent from 2016 to 2017
- Reached over 70,000 Canadians in 2017 through the popular Learn-to Camp program
- New canopy and custom-designed accommodation products to be launched in 2018 in response to visitor needs and interests
- Parks Canada is working with the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada to promote and grow the authentic Indigenous experience offer in regions across the country. Through a spirit of collaboration, Indigenous communities share their stories in their own voices
- Reach more Canadians through digital channels (web, social media) to foster public understanding and encourage support for the Agency’s role in protecting and presenting Canada’s natural and cultural heritage.
- Continuously improve and enhance web presence to make it easier for visitors to interact with online content, plan their visit and learn about Canada’s natural and cultural heritage.
- Launch a national advertising campaign to diversify and maintain visitation and stimulate national pride in and protection of Canada’s heritage places.
- Working with partners, leverage the Government of Canada milestone anniversaries, such as the commemorations of the World Wars, the centennial anniversary of women’s federal suffrage, and the second annual Canada Historic Places Day, as a means to attract new audiences and to enhance Canadians’ connections to and understanding of Canada’s heritage.
- Starting in 2018 and beyond, provide free admission for children under 18 to Parks Canada places―helping to create a future generation of stewards for Canada’s natural and cultural heritage.
- Work with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and the Institute for Canadian Citizenship to raise awareness of Parks Canada’s places to better connect new citizens with Canada’s natural and cultural heritage. In 2018, the Agency will host more than 20 citizenship ceremonies in national parks and national historic sites and continue to offer free admission for one year to new Canadian citizens through the Cultural Access Pass program.
- 27.2 million visitors connected with Canada’s natural and cultural heritage in 2017―an increase of 11% from the previous year
- Visits to national historic sites increased by nearly 25% over the previous year
- A record number of visitors came to Parks Canada’s seven townsite communities in 2017
- More than 2.3 million Canadians subscribed to Parks Canada’s e-newsletter to be better informed for trip planning, contests and promotions
- On the advice of the Franklin Interim Advisory Committee, launched a new collaborative initiative in Nunavut to collect and share the oral histories of Inuit elders and other knowledge-holders related to the tragic 1845 Franklin Expedition
- Parks Canada contributes $3.3 billion to Canada’s gross domestic product and supports approximately 40,000 full-time equivalent jobs from coast to coast to coast
- Visitors to Canada are an important economic driver in urban, rural and remote areas. Parks Canada is present in over 400 communities throughout the country and collaborates with partners and stakeholders to promote Canada’s national parks and national historic sites as premier tourism destinations
- Continue to innovate, expand and diversify the range of programs and services available at Parks Canada heritage places to encourage more Canadians to experience the outdoors and learn about our history.
- Expand the popular Learn-to Camp program. The Agency will host 30 learn-to camp events as well as outreach events in urban centres to better equip Canadians with the tools to connect to and explore the outdoors.
- Diversify accommodation and interpretive offer to encourage exploration and learning at heritage places. Building on the success of 2017 and visitor feedback, online planning tools and reservation capabilities to support trip planning will be improved.
- Continue to share the compelling stories of the Franklin expedition with Canadians and the world. As one of the most important underwater archeological undertakings in Canadian history, there are many stories to be told, including encounters between Inuit and European explorers and the important role Inuit played in the discovery of HMS Erebus and HMS Terror.
- Continue to implement a new approach to history presentation at Parks Canada places under the new historical commemoration framework. This approach is audience focussed and multi-vocal, ensuring Indigenous perspectives and contributions to Canada's history are present and acknowledged.
- Continue to renew contemporary infrastructure that facilitates visitor access and use of heritage places to ensure quality and reliability of visitor offers and respond to changing demand and needs of Canadians. Projects include improvements to camping facilities in Pacific Rim National Park and Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site, improvements to visitor facilities in Lachine Canal National Historic Site and Nahanni National Park Reserve, and improvements to infrastructure that support visitor access in Jasper and Gros Morne national parks.
- Support Canada’s new Tourism Vision to grow Canada’s revenue through international tourism.
- Collaborate with federal partners to welcome growing numbers of Chinese visitors at many Parks Canada places in celebration of the 2018 Canada-China Year of Tourism, and implement a longer-term strategy for Chinese tourism, Canada’s fastest-growing international market.
- Continue to develop strategic partnerships for targeted collaborative activities that support its mandate, including: scientific and academic research; conservation efforts; promotional campaigns (including contests) and outreach activities to reach key audiences, and the delivery of products, experiences and learning tools to support enhanced visitor experiences.
- Continue work to support and facilitate Indigenous peoples’ uses of and connections to traditional territories. Parks Canada is seeking to advance formal agreements that support Indigenous traditional activities. This work supports implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
- Work with Indigenous partners on a national and local scale to advance Indigenous tourism in Canada. This will both increase visitor knowledge and appreciation of Indigenous cultures and contribute to economic prosperity.
|Departmental Results||Departmental Result Indicators||Target||Date to achieve target||2014–15 Actual results||2015–16 Actual results||2016–17 Actual results|
|Canada’s natural heritage is protected for future generations||Contribute to the 2020 Biodiversity Goals and Targets for Canada (Target 1 ‐Terrestrial): percentage of terrestrial regions represented in the national parks system||84%||March 31, 2020||77%||n/a||n/a|
|Contribute to the 2020 Biodiversity Goals and Targets for Canada (Target 1 ‐Marine): percentage of marine regions represented in the national marine conservation area system||31%||March 31, 2020||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Percentage of national park ecosystems where ecological integrity is maintained or improved||90%||March 31, 2019||n/a||90%||88%|
|Number of heritage places managed in a way consistent with the Government’s commitment to nation‐to nation, Inuit‐Crown and government-to-government relationships||23-25||March 31, 2020||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Canada’s cultural heritage is protected for future generations||Number of places, people and events of importance to Canadians that are formally recognized||3778||March 31, 2021||3691||3730||3758|
|Percentage of cultural resources in Parks Canada's care that are safeguarded||90%||March 31, 2022||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Percentage of heritage structures in poor condition that have improvedtable 2 note *||100%||March 31, 2020||n/a||14%
45 out of 328
80 out of 328
|People connect to and experience Canada’s natural and cultural heritage in ways that are meaningful to them||Maintain or increase the number of people that connect with nature at Parks Canada places||24.7M or greater||March 31, 2019||21.8M||23.3M||24.7M|
|Percentage of visitors to Parks Canada places that are new Canadians and young adults||14%||March 31, 2020||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Percentage of Canadians that support the protection and presentation of Parks Canada places||78% - 82%||March 31, 2019||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Number of places where Indigenous peoples use lands and waters according to their traditional and modern practices||TBD||TBD||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Percentage of contemporary infrastructure that facilitates visitor access and/or use of Parks Canada places in poor condition that have improvedtable 2 note *||100%||March 31, 2020||n/a||14%
223 out of 1594
447 out of 1594
Table 1 Note
- Table Note *
The baselines for heritage structures and for contemporary infrastructure were revised in 2016-17 to 422 and 2,942 respectively to reflect the number of assets that are currently assessed to be in poor or very poor condition.
Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
The increase in planned spending in 2019-20 is primarily due to increased funding to address the backlog of deferred work for heritage, visitor, highway and waterway built assets and to address pressures on the Agency’s high priority capital assets. The decrease in planned spending in 2020-21 is primarily due to the sunsetting of this funding.
Human resources (full-time equivalents)
Planned full-time equivalents
Planned full-time equivalents
Planned full-time equivalents
The decrease in full-time equivalents is primarily due to the sunsetting of funding to address the backlog of deferred work for heritage, visitor, highway and waterway built assets and funding for the expansion of the Agency’s Youth Employment Strategy to support the creation of new student positions.
Financial, human resources and performance information for Parks Canada’s Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.
Internal Services are those groups of related activities and resources that the federal government considers to be services in support of programs and/or required to meet corporate obligations of an organization. Internal Services refers to the activities and resources of the 10 distinct service categories that support Program delivery in the organization, regardless of the Internal Services delivery model in a department. The 10 service categories are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; and Acquisition Services.
Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
Human Resources (Full-time Equivalents)
Planned full-time equivalents
Planned full-time equivalents
Planned full-time equivalents
The decreases in both planned spending and in full-time equivalents are primarily due to the sunsetting of funding to address the backlog of deferred work for heritage, visitor, highway and waterway built assets.
- In 2017, visitors to Ottawa's Inspiration Village were able to test out several immersive and virtual journeys to Parks Canada places using Google Expeditions― a novel virtual reality learning product
- This innovative pilot project explored the potential for using the experience to reach more Canadians where they live and work as part of an urban outreach initiative
- Innovate through collaboration. Through Parks Canada’s Innovation Lab, the Agency is active in supporting solutions to improve the efficiency and quality of programs and services. In 2018-19, the Agency will develop and share innovative solutions to operational challenges and transformation initiatives.
- Support mental health and wellness. In support of workplace wellness, Parks Canada’s National Action Plan was created to address Agency-wide opportunities for improvement. In 2018-19, the Agency’s Mental Health and Wellness champion will continue to support initiatives to ensure the continuing health of team members.
- Create a pay transition team. Parks Canada has created a transition team to address issues related to the Phoenix pay system. The Agency will continue to support employees by helping to resolve pay related issues.
- Implement gender-based analysis plus (GBA+). In 2018-19, Parks Canada will develop a GBA+ Framework and subsequently formally integrate GBA+ into decision-making.
- Collaborate openly and digitally with partners and Canadians. In 2018-19, Parks Canada will roll out new tools to improve our services and support digital collaborations internally and with partners. These tools will help team members collaborate across Canada and benefit the partners we work with from coast to coast to coast.
- Enabling Parks Canada with a mobile workforce. In 2018-19, Parks Canada will offer new tools to enable our team members to benefit from cloud services. Parks Canada will also continue to equip team members with mobile-enabled applications to help them deliver our mandate.
- Connect with Canadians using Open Data. Parks Canada is supporting the Government of Canada’s Open Data priority. Parks Canada will develop a framework to help make Open Data a part of all areas of the Agency. In 2018-19, Open Data efforts will focus on enabling Parks Canada’s geomatic specialists.
- Using technology to continuously improve. Parks Canada is improving our network infrastructure and telecommunications. In 2018-19, Parks Canada is upgrading the Agency’s core internet capacity by 50 percent and modernizing phone services. These changes will enable our team members to deliver responsive, open services and programs to Canadians.
- Foster interdisciplinary collaboration. Realty Services has established a community of practice as a forum for promoting best practices, information sharing and learning. This community of practice will foster interdisciplinary approaches to real property management across Parks Canada Agency.
- Standardize and simplify directives. The suite of Realty Directives is being redrafted to ensure a standardized approach to the management and sound stewardship of Parks Canada’s land holdings.
Spending and human resources
Departmental spending trend graph
Long Description for Agency Spending Trend Graph
Agency Spending Trend Graph Fiscal year Total Voted Statutory 2015-16 1,036,130 838,386 197,744 2016-17 1,191,693 992,712 198,981 2017-18 1,385,521 1,254,401 131,120 2018-19 1,472,527 1,284,745 187,782 2019-20 1,584,117 1,396,350 187,767 2020-21 664,290 480,600 183,690
The increase in expenditures and planned spending over five years (2015-16 to 2019-20) is primarily due to infrastructure investments of approximately $3.6 billion enabling Parks Canada to rehabilitate a significant portion of its built asset inventory. Most of this funding sunsets in 2019-20, which explains the significant reduction in funding in 2020-21.
There is a significant reduction in forecasted 2017-18 statutory expenditures due to a decrease in the Agency's planned revenues. This reduction is the result of free entry to all visitors to national parks, national marine conservation areas and national historic sites in celebration of Canada 150. This reduction is offset by a corresponding increase in voted authorities in 2017-18.
Budgetary planning summary for Core Responsibilities and Internal Services (dollars)
|Core Responsibilities and Internal Services||2015–16 Expenditures||2016–17
|Protecting and Presenting Canada’s Natural and Cultural Heritage||894,750,846||1,037,923,019||1,232,543,746||1,317,818,048||1,317,818,048||1,431,921,249||535,450,133|
For fiscal years 2015-16 and 2016-17, the amounts represent the actual expenditures as reported in the Public Accounts. For fiscal year 2017-18 amounts represent the forecast spending which include planned budgetary and statutory expenditures as presented in the Main and Supplementary Estimates.
For the period 2018-19 to 2020-21, planned spending reflects approved funding by Treasury Board to support the Agency’s programs.
Planned human resources
Human resources planning summary for Core Responsibilities and Internal Services (full-time equivalents)
|Core Responsibilities and Internal Services||2015–16
|Protecting and Presenting Canada’s Natural and Cultural Heritage||3,613||3,907||4,289||4,019||3,940||3,523|
The increase in full-time equivalents in 2016-17 is primarily due to increased funding to address the backlog of deferred work for heritage, visitor, highway and waterway built assets as well as the expansion of the Agency’s Youth Employment Strategy to support the creation of new student positions.
The increase in full-time equivalents in 2017-18 is primarily due to in-year funding for developing programs and connecting Canadians to Canada’s heritage places in celebration of Canada 150, and the continued expansion of the Agency’s Youth Employment Strategy to support the creation of new student positions.
The decrease in full-time equivalents in 2018-19 through 2020-21 is primarily due to the sunsetting of funding to address the backlog of deferred work for heritage, visitor, highway and waterway built assets and funding for the expansion of the Agency’s Youth Employment Strategy to support the creation of new student positions.
Estimates by vote
For information on Parks Canada’s organizational appropriations, consult the 2018–19 Main Estimates.
Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations
The Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations provides a general overview of Parks Canada’s operations. The forecast of financial information on expenses and revenues is prepared on an accrual accounting basis to strengthen accountability and to improve transparency and financial management.
Because the Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations is prepared on an accrual accounting basis, and the forecast and planned spending amounts presented in other sections of the Departmental Plan are prepared on an expenditure basis, amounts may differ.
A more detailed Future-Oriented Statement of Operations and associated notes, including a reconciliation of the net cost of operations to the requested authorities, are available on Parks Canada’s website.
Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations for the year ended March 31, 2019 (dollars)
(2018–19 Planned results minus 2017–18 Forecast results)
|Net cost of operations before government funding and transfers||699,568,000||645,440,000||(54,128,000)|
The net cost of operations should decrease by $54.1 million in 2018-19 as a result of an expected increase in revenues following a year of free entry to all Parks Canada national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas to celebrate Canada 150.
Appropriate Minister: The Honourable Catherine McKenna, P.C., M.P.
Institutional Head: Daniel Watson, Chief Executive Officer
Ministerial Portfolio: Environment and Climate Change Canada
- Parks Canada Agency Act
- Canada National Parks Act
- Rouge National Urban Park Act
- Historic Sites and Monuments Act
- Canada National Marine Conservation Areas Act
- Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park Act
- Historic Canal Regulations pursuant to the Department of Transport Act
- Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act
- Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act
- Species at Risk Act
Year of incorporation/commencement: 1998
Raison d’être, mandate and role
“Raison d’être, mandate and role: who we are and what we do” is available on Parks Canada’s website.
Operating context and key risks
Information on operating context and key risks is available on Parks Canada’s website.
The Parks Canada Agency Departmental Results Framework and Program Inventory of record for 2018-19 are shown below:
Parks Canada has transitioned from the Strategic Outcome and Program Alignment Architecture to the new Department Results Framework (DRF), in line with the requirements under the Policy on Results. The new DRF improves Parks Canada’s ability to communicate a better results story and is reflective of how Parks Canada communicates with its partners, stakeholders and Canadians. Three Departmental Results, supported by 12 indicators, are used to reflect Parks Canada’s mandate to protect natural and cultural heritage, while providing meaningful experiences and building stewards for the future. As well, Parks Canada’s DRF is supported by a Program Inventory of five programs that reflect the Agency’s current program architecture.
Concordance between the Departmental Results Framework and the Program Inventory, 2018–19, and the Program Alignment Architecture, 2017–18
Core Responsibilities and Program Inventory
Lowest-level Program of the Program Alignment Architecture
|Percentage of lowest-level Program Alignment Architecture Program (Dollars) Corresponding to the Program in the Program Inventory|
|Core Responsibility 1: Protecting and Presenting Canada’s Natural and Cultural Heritage|
|Heritage Places Establishment Program||1.1.1 National Park Establishment||100|
|1.1.2 National Marine Conservation Area Establishment||100|
|1.1.3 National Historic Site Designation||100|
|1.1.4 Other Heritage Places Designation||100|
|Heritage Places Conservation Program||1.2.1 National Park Conservation||100|
|1.2.2 National Urban Park Conservation||100|
|1.2.3 National Marine Area Conservation||100|
|1.2.4 National Historic Site Conservation||100|
|1.2.5 Other Heritage Places Conservation||100|
|Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support Program||1.3.1 Heritage Places Promotion||100|
|1.3.2 Partnering and Participation||100|
|Visitor Experience Program||1.4.1 National Park Visitor Experience||100|
|1.4.2 National Urban Park Visitor Experience||100|
|1.4.3 National Marine Conservation Area Visitor Experience||100|
|1.4.4 National Historic Site Visitor Experience||100|
|1.4.5 Heritage Canal Visitor Experience||100|
|Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management Program||1.5.1 Townsite Management||100|
|1.5.2 Highway Management||100|
|1.5.3 Heritage Canal Management||100|
Supporting Information on the Program Inventory
Supporting information on planned expenditures, human resources, and results related to Parks Canada’s Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.
Supplementary information tables
The following supplementary information tables are available on Parks Canada’s website.
- Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy
- Details on transfer payment programs of $5 million or more
- Disclosure of transfer payment programs under $5 million
- Gender-based analysis plus
- Planned evaluation coverage over the next five fiscal years
- Upcoming internal audits for the coming fiscal year
Federal tax expenditures
The tax system can be used to achieve public policy objectives through the application of special measures such as low tax rates, exemptions, deductions, deferrals and credits. The Department of Finance Canada publishes cost estimates and projections for these measures each year in the Report on Federal Tax Expenditures. This report also provides detailed background information on tax expenditures, including descriptions, objectives, historical information and references to related federal spending programs. The tax measures presented in this report are the responsibility of the Minister of Finance.
Appendix A: Definitions
- appropriation (crédit)
- Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.
- budgetary expenditures (dépenses budgétaires)
- Operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.
- Core Responsibility (responsabilité essentielle)
- An enduring function or role performed by a department. The intentions of the department with respect to a Core Responsibility are reflected in one or more related Departmental Results that the department seeks to contribute to or influence.
- Departmental Plan (plan ministériel)
- A report on the plans and expected performance of appropriated departments over a three-year period. Departmental Plans are tabled in Parliament each spring.
- Departmental Result (résultat ministériel)
- Any change or changes that the department seeks to influence. A Departmental Result is often outside departments’ immediate control, but it should be influenced by Program-level outcomes.
- Departmental Result Indicator (indicateur de résultat ministériel)
- A factor or variable that provides a valid and reliable means to measure or describe progress on a Departmental Result.
- Departmental Results Framework (cadre ministériel des résultats)
- The department’s Core Responsibilities, Departmental Results and Departmental Result Indicators.
- Departmental Results Report (rapport sur les résultats ministériels)
- A report on the actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Departmental Plan.
- experimentation (expérimentation)
- Activities that seek to explore, test and compare the effects and impacts of policies, interventions and approaches, to inform evidence-based decision-making, by learning what works and what does not.
- full-time equivalent (équivalent temps plein)
- A measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person-year charge against a departmental budget. Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.
- gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) (analyse comparative entre les sexes plus [ACS+])
- An analytical process used to help identify the potential impacts of policies, Programs and services on diverse groups of women, men and gender-diverse people. The “plus” acknowledges that GBA goes beyond sex and gender differences to consider multiple identity factors that intersect to make people who they are (such as race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability).
- government-wide priorities (priorités pangouvernementales)
- For the purpose of the 2018–19 Departmental Plan, government-wide priorities refers to those high-level themes outlining the government’s agenda in the 2015 Speech from the Throne, namely: Growth for the Middle Class; Open and Transparent Government; A Clean Environment and a Strong Economy; Diversity is Canada's Strength; and Security and Opportunity.
- horizontal initiative (initiative horizontale)
- An initiative in which two or more federal organizations, through an approved funding agreement, work toward achieving clearly defined shared outcomes, and which has been designated (by Cabinet, a central agency, etc.) as a horizontal initiative for managing and reporting purposes.
- non-budgetary expenditures (dépenses non budgétaires)
- Net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.
- performance (rendement)
- What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve, and how well lessons learned have been identified.
- performance indicator (indicateur de rendement)
- A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.
- performance reporting (production de rapports sur le rendement)
- The process of communicating evidence-based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision making, accountability and transparency.
- planned spending (dépenses prévues)
- For Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports, planned spending refers to those amounts presented in the Main Estimates.
- A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports.
- plan (plan)
- The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.
- priority (priorité)
- A plan or project that an organization has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired Departmental Results.
- Program (programme)
- Individual or groups of services, activities or combinations thereof that are managed together within the department and focus on a specific set of outputs, outcomes or service levels.
- Program Alignment Architecture (architecture d’alignement des programmes) Footnote 1
- A structured inventory of an organization’s programs depicting the hierarchical relationship between programs and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.
- results (résultat)
- An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization’s influence.
- statutory expenditures (dépenses législatives)
- Expenditures that Parliament has approved through legislation other than appropriation acts. The legislation sets out the purpose of the expenditures and the terms and conditions under which they may be made.
- Strategic Outcome (résultat stratégique)
- A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization’s mandate, vision and core functions.
- sunset program (programme temporisé)
- A time-limited program that does not have an ongoing funding and policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made whether to continue the program. In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration.
- target (cible)
- A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.
- voted expenditures (dépenses votées)
- Expenditures that Parliament approves annually through an Appropriation Act. The Vote wording becomes the governing conditions under which these expenditures may be made.
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