Mandate of the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada

The Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (IAAC) is a federal body accountable to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change.

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Transcript: Discover the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada

Canada is rich in natural resources. Developed responsibly, these resources create good jobs and support strong communities and our high quality of life.

Major projects worth billions of dollars are planned across the country.

Hydro electric dams, pipelines, offshore oil and gas wells, marine shipping terminals, roads and mines—projects like these help keep Canada prosperous.

But without impact assessments, development can have serious negative effects on the environment and the way of life in nearby communities.

Before a major project begins, the Government of Canada consults with companies, experts, other governments, indigenous groups and local communities. The goal is to maximize the project's positive impacts and minimize any negative ones. The process is led by the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada.

Our job is to consider what people have to say about how major projects may be developed.

Not only do we lead on the assessment of environmental impacts…

But also economic impacts … socio-cultural impacts …

and health impacts.

We also ensure that when the federal government approves a project, the company complies with any of the conditions of approval.

Our work is guided by five principles:

Fostering reconciliation and partnership with Indigenous peoples.

Cooperating closely with other jurisdictions to achieve "one-project, one-assessment."

Basing decisions on scientific evidence and Indigenous knowledge.

Providing predictability, transparency and timeliness for proponents and investors.

And engaging meaningfully with the public—ensuring that everyone has their say.

To learn more about the Agency, or to comment on major projects undergoing an impact assessment …

please visit our website at

and follow us on social media.

The Impact Assessment Agency of Canada.

Have your say.

Who we are

We deliver high-quality impact assessments that contribute to informed decision-making on major projects in support of sustainable development.

Learn more about impact assessments.

What we do

Through the delivery of impact assessments, we serve Canadians by looking at both positive and negative environmental, economic, social, and health impacts of potential projects like mines, roads, and dams.

  • We lead and manage the impact assessment process for all federally designated major projects.
  • We lead Crown engagement and serve as the single point of contact for consultation and engagement with Indigenous peoples during impact assessments for designated projects.
  • We provide opportunities and funding to support public participation in impact assessments.
  • We work to ensure that mitigation measures are applied and are working as intended.
  • We promote uniformity and coordination of impact assessment practices across Canada through research, guidance and ongoing discussion with stakeholders and partners.
  • We work with a range of international jurisdictions and organizations to exchange best practices in impact assessment.

Come see our impact on Canada.

How we work

Through our seven offices, we lead all federal reviews of major resources projects.

We work with other bodies like the Canada Energy Regulator (formerly the National Energy Board), the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Offshore Boards and other federal departments and agencies.

We also work in cooperation with provinces and territories, Indigenous jurisdictions, environmental organizations and industry.

Learn more about our partners.

When we began

In 1994, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency was established to prepare for the implementation of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 1992 (CEAA 1992), which came into effect in early 1995.

In 2019, the Impact Assessment Act was enacted which created the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and repealed the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012.

Learn more about milestones in the history of assessments.

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