Supplementary Information Tables 2018-2019

  • List of supplementary information tables for the 2018–19 DRR

    • Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy
    • Details on transfer payment programs of $5 million or more
    • Gender-based analysis plus
    • Horizontal initiatives – not applicable
    • Response to parliamentary committees and external audits
    • Status report on projects operating with specific Treasury Board approval – not applicable
    • Status report on transformational and major Crown projects – not applicable
    • Up front multi year funding – not applicable

Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy

1. Context for the Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy

The 2016–2019 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS):

  • sets out the Government of Canada’s sustainable development priorities
  • establishes goals and targets
  • identifies actions to achieve them, as required by the Federal Sustainable Development Act

In keeping with the objectives of the act to make environmental decision-making more transparent and accountable to Parliament, Polar Knowledge Canada (POLAR) supports reporting on the implementation of the FSDS.

As an agency that is not named in Schedule I of the Financial Administration Act (FAA) or in the Schedule of the Federal Sustainable Development Act (FSDA), POLAR is not required to complete the Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy Supplementary Tables. However, due to their commitment to sustainability, POLAR will begin developing a Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy, or equivalent document, in fiscal year 2020-21 and will report on the status of that document in the 2020-21 Departmental Results Report.

2. Sustainable development in Polar Knowledge Canada

Once POLAR completes its Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy, or equivalent document, the supplementary information table presenting available results for the departmental action[s] pertinent to the goals established will be posted on POLAR’s website.

3. Departmental performance by FSDS goal

As noted above, POLAR will begin developing a Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy, including information on Green Procurement, in fiscal year 2020-21 and will report on the status of that document in the 2020-21 Departmental Results Report. As an agency that is bound by the Policy on Green Procurement (i.e., those departments and agencies as defined in section 2 of the FAA), POLAR is required to provide information on actions that “Support the transition to a low-carbon economy through green procurement” in order to comply with the reporting requirements of this Policy. Information on actions and targets will be updated on POLAR’s website when available.

FSDS goal: low-carbon government

FSDS target(s) FSDS contributing action(s) Corresponding departmental action(s) Support for United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (UN SDG) target Starting point(s), target(s) and performance indicator(s) for departmental actions Results achieved
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from federal government buildings and fleets by 40% below 2005 levels by 2030, with an aspiration to achieve it by 2025 Support the transition to a low-carbon economy through green procurement
  • POLAR uses Public Services and Procurement Canada’s consolidated procurement instruments, which include environmental considerations and enable Departments and Agencies to purchase more environmentally preferable goods and services.
12.7 To be determined. Not yet available.

4. Report on integrating sustainable development

During the 2018–19 reporting cycle, Polar Knowledge Canada considered the environmental effects of a proposal that was subject to the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals, as part of its decision-making processes. Through the Strategic Environmental Assessment process, POLAR’s proposed activities were found to have positive effects on progress toward achieving all the 2016 to 2019 FSDS goals and targets, including:

  • Effective action on climate change
  • Low-carbon government
  • Clean growth
  • Modern and resilient infrastructure
  • Clean energy
  • Healthy coasts and oceans
  • Pristine lakes and rivers
  • Sustainably managed lands and forests
  • Healthy wildlife populations
  • Clean drinking water
  • Sustainable food
  • Connecting Canadians with nature
  • Safe and healthy communities

POLAR’s assessment also showed that the agency will support many of the Sustainable Development Goals that Canada, and 192 other UN member states, adopted through the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Specifically, the CHARS campus has been designed to meet gold certification in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), even though this designation is normally and more easily applied to southern environments. By working to achieve this certification, the campus includes features such as:

  • bike racks
  • low-flow fixtures
  • ongoing monitoring of building systems
  • wastewater and waste management
  • managing light pollution
  • energy reduction
  • maintaining high level of air quality

Details on transfer payment programs of $5 million or more


Departments and agencies must complete the table below for each transfer payment program (TPP), including each statutory TPP, that has total spending of $5 million or more during the reporting year. Up front multi year funding that is $10 million or less and provided under a TPP with terms and conditions should also be included in this table (see subsection 6.6.3 of the Directive on Transfer Payments).

General information

Name of transfer payment program Transfer Payments to support the advancement of Northern Science and Technology.
Start date June 2015
End date Ongoing
Type of transfer payment Grant and Contribution
Type of appropriation Estimates
Fiscal year for terms and conditions 2015–16
Link to the department’s Program Inventory Polar Science and Knowledge
Description Polar Knowledge Canada (POLAR) supports research projects within its Science and Technology Program, which aims to create a strong research presence in Canada’s Arctic through POLAR. The program builds a knowledge base to support effective solutions to Arctic issues, northern policy and research development, and advances Canada’s position as a leading Arctic nation.
Results achieved

In FY2018-19, transfer payments totalling $8,950,857 supported 40 contribution agreements; 7 grant agreements, and 37 NSTP grant agreements, totalling 84 funding agreements projects taking place in Canada’s North which directly support one or more of the following four (4) strategic priorities under this Program:

  1. Baseline information to prepare for northern sustainability;
  2. Predicting the impacts of changing ice, permafrost, and snow on shipping, infrastructure, and communities;
  3. Alternative and renewable energy for the north; and,
  4. Catalysing improved design, construction and maintenance of northern built infrastructure.

Through this funding, POLAR enabled various academic institutions, Indigenous organizations, northern communities and other not-for-profit organizations to carry out projects that encompassed the following key elements:

  • Respectful incorporation of both science and Indigenous Knowledge (IK) in project design, research and knowledge dissemination;
  • Leadership and involvement of Northerners, including communities and Indigenous peoples;
  • Integration of training and capacity building at the local or community-level; and,
  • A coordinated, collaborative and interdisciplinary approach.

The following are examples of specific project results:

POLAR’s financial support has contributed to the graduation of Nunavummiut enrolled in the Nunavut Arctic College’s Environmental Technology Program, preparing them for science and technology careers, and has also supported projects which allowed Canadian researcher participation in the National Aeronautics and Space Agency’s (NASA) Arctic Boreal Vulnerability Experiment (ABoVE) initiative, which is supporting research for evidence-based decision-making regarding climate change adaptation in Canada’s western Arctic boreal region.

Findings of audits completed in 2018–19 No audits were completed in FY2018-19.
Findings of evaluations completed in 2018–19 An evaluation is not currently planned to be undertaken by POLAR.
Engagement of applicants and recipients in 2018–19 Open calls for proposals which are posted on POLAR’s website as well as targeted calls for proposals are utilized to solicit proposals from potential applicants. In-person or teleconference meetings with recipients promote ongoing collaboration and also provide opportunities to discuss project progress. POLAR monitors recipient compliance with the terms of active funding agreements through in-depth review of financial and project progress reports that are submitted in accordance with the approved project reporting plan.

Financial information (dollars)

Type of transfer payment 2016–17 Actual spending 2017–18 Actual spending 2018–19 Planned spending 2018–19 Total authorities available for use 2018–19 Actual spending (authorities used) Variance (2018–19 actual minus 2018–19 planned)
Total grants 87,305 10,000 159,458 10,000 10,000 (149,458)
Total contributions 5,627,081 9,152,366 4,388,255 7,194,858 7,194,858 2,806,603
Total other types of transfer payments 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total program 5,714,386 9,162,366 4,547,713 7,204,858 7,204,858 2,657,145
Explanation of variances POLAR has prepared a Supplementary Estimates as the means to transfer $149 thousand from one grant program to another. In addition, a transfer of $2.8 million was done from the O&M funds to the contribution funds to fulfill POLAR commitments.

Gender-based analysis plus

General information

Governance structures POLAR does not currently have a GBA+ implementation plan in place, however, GBA+ information was compiled in FY2018-19 as part of a funding proposal.
Human resources Not-applicable – Although consideration is given to GBA+ as outlined below, as a micro-organization POLAR does not currently have the capacity to dedicate a resource to GBA+ specific activities.
Major initiatives: results achieved

In 2018-19, POLAR committed to use GBA+ information, data and trends to inform POLAR activities in support of departmental results. Specifically, in order to increase Indigenous participation in their activities, in 2018-19 POLAR committed to perform the following activities:

  • Provide in-kind and financial support to research projects that include Indigenous and local knowledge, and encourage and facilitate engagement between researchers at the CHARS campus and community decision-makers; and,
  • Support data and information management systems to document Indigenous knowledge to support local and integrated decision-making.

In order to increase the number of youth (including Indigenous youth) pursuing polar science and technology-related careers, POLAR has committed to:

  • Providing support for science camps in northern communities, visiting scientist presentations, as well as educational tools (such as maps of the polar regions) to support curriculum development: and,
  • Support early career personnel in preparing for future science and technology-related careers, including supporting participation in science conferences and employment at the CHARS campus to assist POLAR researchers.
Reporting capacity and data

POLAR’s single program “Polar Science and Knowledge” has two departmental result commitments with indicators that support the GBA+:

  • With respect to the Departmental Result that “Canada’s Arctic science includes Indigenous and local knowledge,” in 2018-19, POLAR committed to begin measuring the percentage of Arctic research projects led or supported by POLAR that include Indigenous or local knowledge and to establish a baseline and target for this indicator.
  • With respect to the Departmental Result that “the next generation of Canadian polar researchers is developed,” in 2018-19, POLAR committed to measuring the number of youth involved in activities led or supported by Polar Knowledge Canada and to establish a baseline and target for this indicator.

Response to parliamentary committees and external audits

Response to parliamentary committees

There were no parliamentary committee reports requiring a response in 2018–19.

Response to audits conducted by the Office of the Auditor General of Canada (including audits conducted by the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development)

There were no audits in 2018–19 requiring a response.

Response to audits conducted by the Public Service Commission of Canada or the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages

There were no audits in 2018–19 requiring a response.

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