Pesticide research and monitoring: Memorandum of Understanding between Environment Canada, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Health Canada

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Memorandum of understanding between Environment Canada, Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Natural Resources Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada pertaining to pesticide research and monitoring.

1.0 Purpose

1.1 The purpose of this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and Appendix 1 is to record agreement on principles and the intent to establish mechanisms that facilitate the exchange of science based information and advice, and to promote strong working relationships among six federal partners: Health Canada (HC), the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Environment Canada (EC), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Fisheries and Oceans . Canada (DFO), and Natural Resources Canada (NRCan). This MOU will promote and foster closer cooperation between the federal research and regulatory communities working on pest control products and pest management issues including other areas of mutual interest such as risk assessment approaches, risk mitigation, and sustainable pest management. This cooperation will contribute to strengthening the science-based decision making in the registration, re-evaluation, and overall regulation of pesticides.

2.0 Background

2.1 Whereas, the Treasury Board Secretariat approved the Building Public Confidence in Pesticide Regulation and Improving Access to Pest Management Products Initiative (the BPC Initiative) with long-term goals of increasing public and stakeholder confidence in the pesticide regulatory system, protecting health and environment, and increasing the competitiveness of the agri-food and forestry sectors.

2.2 Whereas, in the 2007 Formative Evaluation of the BPC Initiative, a recommendation was put forward to draft a Memorandum of Understanding that will focus on identifying needs, prioritizing and coordinating pesticide research, and monitoring plans to facilitate the timely transfer of results between the Participants to support decision making.

2.3 Whereas, EC's mandate is to preserve and enhance the quality of the natural environment, including water, air and soil quality; conserve Canada's renewable resources, including migratory birds and other non-domestic flora and fauna; conserve and protect Canada's water resources; and coordinate environmental policies and programs for the federal government. As part of this mandate, it conducts research on the presence and effects of pesticides in the environment.

2.4 Whereas, AAFC's mandate is to provide information, research and technology, and policies and programs to achieve security of the food system, health of the environment and innovation for growth. It conducts research to reduce the negative impact of agricultural practices, including pest control activities, on the health of water, soil, air and bio-diversity. This includes: development of reduced risk alternative pest control technologies such as biological

controls; biopesticides; resistant germplasm, cultivars and varieties; methods for pest detection, monitoring and surveillance; identification, biology, etiology and ecology of pest and natural enemies. AAFC also conducts research to support the introduction of minor-use pesticides that pose a reduced risk to the environment and develops and implements commodity-based risk reduction strategies for the agriculture and agri-food sector.

2.5 Whereas, DFO is responsible for developing and implementing policies and programs in support of Canada's scientific, ecological, social and economic interests in oceans and fresh waters . .Inpart, DFO's research provides the scientific foundation for sound decision making ori the sustainable use and the conservation and protection of fish, fish habitat and aquatic ecosystems by understanding how marine, estuarine and freshwater ecosystems_ function and how they are affected by human activities. DFO's pesticide program enables the department to better fulfil its responsibility to conserve and protect Canada's fisheries resources by providing the scientific results and conclusions of its research to the pesticide regulatory authorities.

2.6 . Whereas, the mandate of the Canadian Forest Service of NRCan is the promotion of the sustainable development of Canada's forests and Canada's forest industry. Within this mandate, the Canadian Forest Service develops and facilitates the use of reduced risk pesticides, including biological pesticides for forestry, and develops and transfers to operational use integrated forest pest management strategies and alternative pest management methods.

2.7 Whereas, the CFIA delivers federal inspection services related to food, animal health and plant protection. The CFIA strives: to protect Canadians from preventable health risks; to protect consumers through a fair and effective food, animal and plant regulatory regime that supports competitive domestic and international markets; to sustain the plant and animal resource base; and, to contribute to the security of Canada's food supply and agricultural base. It monitors and enforces pesticide residue limits in foods, feed and fertilizers, and pesticide guarantees in fertilizer-pesticide combinations.

2.8 Whereas, the broad mandate of HC is to help Canadians maintain and improve their health. Insofar as pest control products are concerned, the Pest Management Regulatory Agency's (PMRA) primary objective is to protect human health and the environment by minimizing the risks associated with pest control products in an open and transparent manner, while enabling access to pest management tools and sustainable pest management strategies. Consistent with this objective, the PMRA seeks to encourage the development and implementation of innovative, sustainable pest management strategies by facilitating access to pest control products that pose lower risks and by other appropriate measures such as the development of drinking water guidelines, research on food and integrating the principles of sustainability into Canada's pest management regulatory regime.

2.9 NOW THEFORE the Participants have arrived at the following understanding:

3.0 Definitions

3.1 "Confidential Information" for the purposes of this MOU and .Appendix 1 means all scientific, technical, business, financial, legal, marketing or strategic information, including without limitation, information that is non-public, confidential, privileged or proprietary in nature in whatever form, which is disclosed orally, in writing, during discussions, meetings, demonstrations, correspondence or otherwise or any part or portion thereof pursuant to this MOU.

4.0 Principles

4.1 The Participants, in carrying out their respective mandates, will cooperate and support each other in meeting their respective responsibilities in relation to environmental conservation and protection, protection of animal and human health and sustainable development, and in other areas of mutual interest. In doing so, the Participants will consider their respective environmental conservation and protection policies and measures with a view to enhancing convergence and compatibility.

4.2 The provisions of this MOU are not to be interpreted in such a way that would:

4.3 The Participants, when appropriate, will advise each other on policies, programs and legislation that may affect the mandate of the other.

4.4 The Participants will foster strong working relations that support and promote scientifically sound decisions by establishing and maintaining an effective process to share information as permitted by law, and exchange knowledge through interdepartmental working groups.

5.0 Objective

5.1 The objectives of this MOU are to foster strong working relationships and to facilitate the exchange of information and advice concerning pesticides and pest management that will enhance the effectiveness of programs, services, and decisions delivered by the six federal partners.

6.0 Implementation

6.1 In pursuing the objectives of this MOU, HC, CFIA, AAFC, EC, DFO, and NRCan will:

6.2 Create a positive climate and venues for research and monitoring collaboration to ensure the timely input of research and monitoring data in support of the regulation of pesticides and pest management practices;

6.3 Develop annually, an integrated work plan for research and monitoring which will outline planned activities and associated outputs as well as identify Participants responsible for completing planned activities;

6.4 Finalize and implement a single performance measurement framework as indicated in the · Management Action Plan under the BPC Formative Evaluation;

6.5 Share, with the other Participants, respective priorities for pesticide research and monitoring activities and, where possible, partake in the joint identification of priorities for research and monitoring activities that focus on regulatory needs;

6.6 Provide a platform to share research and monitoring information related to pest control products and pest management issues as well as other areas of mutual interest, subject to the terms and conditions of agreements between a Participant and third parties;

6.7 Provide liaison among Participants;

6.8 Where possible, contribute expertise and scientific advice to Participants via interdepartmental scientific review committees;

6.9 Where possible, provide each other advance notice of the public release of documents or information pertaining to issues of common interest specific to pest control products and sustainable pest management strategies;

6.10 Establish a Committee of Senior Managers, designated as the 6NR Working Group, at the Director or Director General level (or their delegate) from each of the Participants to monitor progress and discuss future strategies for the conduct of cross-government pesticide research and monitoring and linkages to pesticide regulation.

7.0 Accountability

7.1 Accountability for the implementation of this MOU will rest with the members of the 6NR Working Group (i.e., the relevant Directors General of the PMRA, the NRCan Canadian Forest Service, EC, AAFC, DFO, the Director, Food Safety Division of the CFIA and the Executive Director, Plant Products Directorate of the CFIA). The primary point of contact under this MOU, who shall be responsible for its administration, is the Director General of the Environmental Assessment Directorate, PMRA, HC.

8.0 Terms of the MOU

8.1 This MOU will come into effect on the date of the last signature.

8.2 This MOU may be amended with the prior mutual written consent of all Participants.

8.3 The Participants will review this MOU after 12 months of signing to determine its adequacy and propose any changes it considers appropriate.

8.4 This MOU will remain in effect for a period of five (5) years from the effective date. The obligations and responsibilities of the Participants respecting the confidentiality of any Confidential Information shall continue so long as the Confidential Information is not disclosed to the public.

8.5 Either Participant may withdraw, at any time, upon presentation of three months written notice.

8.6 This MOU may be terminated at any time, with the prior mutual written consent of all Participants.

8.7 Where an issue, question or dispute arises between the Participants, the Participants agree that

  1. the Participants shall first attempt to resolve any such issue, question, difference or dispute through good faith discussions and negotiations at the 6NR working group level;
  2. if issues, questions, differences or disputes are unresolved, they will be referred to the Assistant Deputy Minister level for final resolution.

Signed:

Approved for Environment Canada

By:

Date:

Approved for Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

By (Program Branch):
Date:

By (Research Branch):
Date:

Approved for Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Date:

Approved for Natural Resources Canada

By:

Date:

Approved for Health Canada

By:

Date:

Approved for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency

By (Food Safety Division):
Date:

By (Plant Products Directorate):
Date:

Appendix 1: Exchange of information and confidentiality

1.1 Subject to the relevant privacy legislation and to common law principles and to the restrictions set out in this Appendix, the Participants, at their sole and unfettered discretion, will share information related to pest control products and pest management issues including other areas of mutual interest such as risk assessment approaches, risk mitigation and sustainable pest management.

1.2 Nothing in this MOU requires the Participants to disclose to one another any Confidential Information under the control of the Participants. The Participants also recognize and acknowledge that by the nature of their respective operations, they will be involved, not only with each other, but also with various third parties (e.g. including, other government departments and agencies, industry, universities, provincial and international affiliates) in research, development and technology transfer in various areas, and that as a result of such involvement, Confidential Information may be either generated or obtained from third parties.

1.3 Each Participant may place restrictions, limitations, and conditions that it deems appropriate upon Confidential Information it elects to disclose to the other Participants. Participants sharing Confidential Information must identify, when it is shared, that it is confidential and must specify its authorized use and/or the restrictions, limitations, conditions of its use.

1.4 Confidential Information disclosed to the PMRA is provided with the understanding that,

1.5 Subject to Section 1.3 of this Appendix, the Participants shall use reasonable efforts and take such action as may be appropriate to prevent the unauthorized use and disclosure. of, and to keep confidential, all Confidential Information, including without limitation:

  1. disclosing only to those employees, servants and agents of the Participants who have a need to know for the purposes of this MOU, are subject to a contractual duty of confidentiality no less onerous than that found in this MOU, and are properly instructed to maintain the Confidential Information in confidence. The Participants agree to verify that their employees, servants and agents comply with the terms of this MQU; and.
  2. safeguard against theft, damage or access by unauthorized persons.

1.6 Notwithstanding Sections 1.3 & 1.4 of this Appendix, the Participants recognize that

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Confidential Information disclosed by the CFIA to the other Participants shall be kept confidential and can only be subsequently disclosed with the prior authorization of the CFIA.

1.7 Notwithstanding any of the foregoing, the terms and conditions of this MOU shall not apply to Confidential Information that:

  1. at the time of its disclosure or after becomes part of the public domain other than as a consequence of a Participant's breach of this MOU;
  2. was known or otherwise available to the Participants prior to the Confidential Information's disclosure by the Disclosing Party under this MOU; or
  3. was disclosed by a third party to the Participants, after the disclosure of the Confidential Information by the Disclosing Participant, if such third party's disclosure neither violates any obligation of the third party to the Disclosing Party nor is a consequence of a Party's breach of this MOU.

1.8 Nothing in this MOU shall be interpreted in any way whatsoever so as to prevent the Participants from disclosing any information, arising from, related to, concerning or received from other Participants under the MOU, including Confidential Information, that the Participants may be authorized or required to disclose under pertinent Canadian legislation, administrative process or court order. The Participants shall immediately notify the Disclosing Participant prior to any disclosure, if legally possible.

Signed:

Approved for Environment Canada

By:

Jacinthe Leclerc

A/Director General

Environment Canada

Water Science and Technology

Date: February 21, 2008

Approved for Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

By:

Richard Butts A/Director General

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Environmental Health

Date:

Approved for Fisheries and Oceans Canada

By:

Sylvain Paradis Director General

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Ecosystem Science

Date:

Approved for Natural Resources Canada

By:

Mary Mes-Hartree A/Director General Natural Resources Canada Canadian Forest Service

Science and Programs Branch

Date:

Approved for Health Canada

By:

Peter Delorme

A/Director General

Environmental Assessment Directorate Pest Management Regulatory Agency

Date:

Approved for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency

By:

Ms. Debra Bryanton, Executive Director

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Food Safety Directorate

Date:

By:

Glyn Chancey, A/Executive Director

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Plant Products Directorate

Date:

Signed:

Approved for Environment Canada

By:

Fred Wrona A/Director General Environment Canada

Water Science and Technology

Date:

Approved for Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

By:

Richard Butts A/Director General

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Environmental Health

Date: 07/12/06

Approved for Fisheries and Oceans Canada

By:

Sylvain Paradis Director General

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Ecosystem Science

Date:

Approved for Natural Resources Canada

By:

Mary Mes-Hartree A/Director General Natural Resources Canada Canadian Forest Service

Science and Programs Branch

Date:

Signed:

Approved for Environment Canada

By:

Fred Rona

A/Director General

Environment Canada

Water Science and Technology

Date:

Approved for Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

By:

Richard Butts

A/Director General

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Environnental Health

Date:

Approved for Fisheries and Oceans Canada

By:

Sylvain Paradis

Director General

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Ecosystem Science

Date: December 7, 2017

Approved for Natural Resources Canada

By:

Mary Mes-Hartree A/Director General

Natural Resources Canada Canadian Forest Service Science and Programs Branch

Date:

Approved for Health Canada

By:

Peter Delorme A/Director General

Envirom11ental Assessment Directorate Pest Management Regulatory Agency

Date:

Approved for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency

By:

Ms. Debra Bryanton, Executive Director

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Food Safety Directorate

Date:

By:

Glyn Chancey,

A/Executive Director

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Plant Products Directorate

Date:

Signed:

Approved for Environment Canada

By:

Fred Rona A/Director General Environment Canada

Water Science and Technology

Date:

Approved for Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

By:

Richard Butts A/Director General

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Environmental Health

Date:

Approved for Fisheries and Oceans Canada

By:

Sylvain Paradis Director General

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Ecosystem Science

Date:

Approved for Natural Resources Canada

By:

Mary Mes-Hartree

A/Director General

Natural Resources Canada Canadian Forest Service Science and Programs Branch

Date:

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