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NRCan/GSC 2011 update for CCCESD. November 17, 2011. NRCan’s Mandate, Vision, and Strategic Outcomes …. Mandate Enhance the responsible development and use of Canada’s natural resources and the competitiveness of Canada’s natural resource products Vision

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NRCan’s Mandate, Vision, and Strategic Outcomes …
  • Mandate
  • Enhance the responsible development and use of Canada’s natural resources and the competitiveness of Canada’s natural resource products
  • Vision
  • Improve the quality of life of Canadians by creating a sustainable resource advantage
  • Strategic Outcomes
  • … to respond to economic and environmental imperatives driving the natural resource sectors
nrcan s priorities continue to support government s agenda
NRCan’s priorities continue to support Government’s agenda

“We must combine the best of our intellectual and natural resourcesto create jobs, growth and opportunity” Speech from the Throne, March 2010

earth science sector helping build the nation s foundation
EARTH SCIENCE SECTORHelping build the nation’s foundation …

The Earth Sciences Sector’s (ESS) responsibilities can be traced back to before Confederation and are deeply rooted in Canada’s history – from opening the frontier to defining the nation’s territory:

  • Geological Survey of Canada – founded in 1842
  • Surveyor General for Canada – established in 1871
  • National Atlas of Canada – first published in 1906

Today ESS builds on that legacy, developing and using S&T to support competitiveness and stewardship:

  • Attracting investment in energy and minerals through resource assessments
  • Mitigating impacts and risks to ecosystems
  • Informing land-use decisions, regulatory effectiveness
  • Supporting public safety and sovereignty
  • Enabling innovation and competitiveness through the provision of sophisticated tools, technologies, data and analysis

Canada at Confederation 1867

The Minister is responsible for the scientific examination and survey of the geological structure and mineralogy of Canada and to prepare and publish maps, data, etc. to illustrate the reports of investigations and surveys -- Resources and Technical Surveys Act.

Observing Canada from Space

governing requires knowing your territory
A View Along the 49th Parallel in the Kootenay RangeGoverning requires knowing your territory …

For today’s borders…

  • The Surveyor General for Canada under the International Boundary Commission Act works with the U.S. to jointly maintain the international boundary line and vista
  • under the Canada Lands Surveys Act provides legal surveys on Canada Lands to support property transactions and land development, devolution of the territories and implementation of Aboriginal land claim agreements

…and tomorrow’s boundaries

  • Canada is collecting scientific data to define the outer limits of its continental shelf under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), an area equivalent in size to Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta combined

For observing landmass and environment in real time, and over time …

  • The Canadian Centre for Remote Sensing uses satellite imagery, remote sensing and other innovative and sophisticated tools and technologies to advance our understanding and knowledge of the Canadian landmass, including the offshore
  • The Mapping Information Branch leads in the development and application of tools and technologies to advance our knowledge and use of digital spatial data and information

Property Boundaries

Satellite Receiving Station

and the geology of its landmass
… and the geology of its landmass …

The Geological Survey of Canada (GSC) undertakes the scientific examination and survey of the geological structure and mineralogy of Canada to support the sustainable development of the nation’s natural resources …

Geological Map of Canada

… and understand and mitigate the risks of resource development on the environment to build social license and inform regulatory decisions.

and working with all levels of government
Federal Responsibility
  • Management of Canada Lands and issues of national interest:
  • Sovereignty and Governance:
  • Maintain the Canada-U.S. border
  • Legal surveys on Canada Lands
  • Support Natural Resource Development:
  • Geoscience of Canada’s landmass and offshore of a national and regional nature
  • Informed decision-making (e.g. land use; regulations; environmental stewardship, etc.):
  • National geospatial databases, standards, policies and networks to link to provincial and territorial data systems
  • Federal Leadership:
  • National leadership on geoscience/geomatics issues
  • Coordination with international geoscience/geomatics agencies
… and working with all levels of government
  • Provincial Responsibility
  • Management of natural resources and issues of provincial interest:
  • Legal surveys on provincial lands
  • Geoscience within provincial boundaries to manage natural resource development
  • Provincial geospatial databases and networks
  • Provincial leadership and coordination with local governments
  • Shared Responsibility
  • Management of common data and information and issues of interprovincial or regional interest:
  • Common jurisdictional boundaries (e.g. Interprovincial Boundary Commissions)
  • Intergovernmental Geoscience and Geomatics Accords; governments have agreed to share available data
Geological Survey of Canada: Canada’s National Geoscience Agency since 1842
  • GSC-Pacific
  • Total of 490 staff, in seven locations across Canada
  • Canada-Nunavut Geoscience Office
  • GSC-Québec
  • GSC-Atlantic
  • GSC-Central
  • GSC-Northern
  • Hazard Info Service
  • GSC-Calgary


gsc what we do


GSC: What We Do

Map the geology of the North to modern standards (GEM)

Complete mapping of the continental shelf to provide

sound scientific support for Canada’s UNCLOS submission

Advancing Sustainable Resource Development in the North



Develop new exploration methodologies for finding deep, hidden mineral deposits near existing mining infrastructure (TGI-4)

Enabling Competitive

Resource Sectors




Complete mapping of 30 key regional aquifers

Provide geoscience knowledge to:

  • identify and explore feasibility of new energy sources
  • understand and sustainably develop the offshore
  • minimize environmental impacts of resource development
  • assess resource potential to inform land-use decisions
  • understand climate change impacts, and promote adaptation

Economic Affairs: A Clean and Healthy Environment




Social Affairs: A Safe and Secure Canada


Support emergency response to natural hazards with emergency information services



Geomapping for Energy and Minerals

  • GEM is a major initiative of the Government of Canada’s Northern Strategy.
  • $100 million over 5 years to lay the knowledge foundation for economic development in the North (2008-2013).
  • Filling prioritized knowledge gaps in the public geoscience knowledge base that is required by the private sector to make strategic exploration investment decisions in new energy and mineral resources in the North.
  • Projects focused in the North, however up to 25% can be spent in the northern parts of the Provinces on a cost-shared basis.
  • Helps enable Northerners to make informed decisions about their future economy and society, delivers fundamental public geoscience knowledge that supports evidenced-based land use decision-making.
GEM Accomplishments to date

To date, the GEM program has completed:

  • 4 successful field seasons with 20 projects in three territories and the northern parts of six provinces;
  • 24 regional geophysical surveys have been completed;
  • 424 open file releases of new geoscience maps have been published;
  • more than 377 presentations have been delivered at venues frequented by industry, government, and NGOs;
  • GEM results have influenced private-sector investment decisions across the north for gold and other precious metals, diamonds, nickel, rare earths, iron, uranium, and petroleum resources.
Targeted Geoscience Initiative 4 Geoscience for enhanced effectiveness of deep exploration

A collaborative federal geoscience program which will provide industry with the next generation of geoscience knowledge and innovative techniques allowing more effective targeting of buried mineral deposits.

tgi 4 framework
TGI-4 Framework
  • Develop more robust exploration vectors that can more effectively identify fertile mineral systems
  • Develop new knowledge and techniques to better model and detect Canada’s major mineral systems;
  • Train students to increase the number of highly qualified personnel available to the mineral industry.
Increasing depth of cover

Source: Hronsky March 2007

Ore system approach to project definition
  • Targeted Ore Systems:
  • Intrusion-related (Cu-Mo, Cu-Au, Mo-W, Sn-In)
  • Ni-Cu-(PGE)-Cr
  • Pb-Zn SEDEX
  • Polymetallic VMS
  • Lode Gold
  • Uranium
  • Specialty Metals
  • Method Development

Preparing highly qualified personnel…

  • Through its bursary program and associations with universities, GSC is contributing to the preparation of the next generation of highly qualified personnel (HQP).
  • GEM:38 students on their way to complete their graduate degrees with northern experience.
  • GEM:50 undergraduate students have also been trained.
  • Early evidence suggests industry is welcoming these young scientists. collaborating with universities

gem grants and contributions
GEM Grants and Contributions
  • Total available Grants and Contributions funds under GEM (5 years): 2,45 million$, 80% approx. currently committed.
  • New series of G&Cs, focused on developing knowledge transfer tools to actively communicate GEM knowledge and GEM data to Northern communities.
  • Call for Letter of Intents currently posted on-line, submission deadline of November 22, 2011 for G&Cs.
  • Open to non-profit organizations and educational institutions.
  • Website:
tgi 4 grants and contributions
TGI-4 Grants and Contributions
  • Grant and Contributions Program- total envelope of $1.8M; eligibility: University/College research staff
  • Contributions
    • Core activities focussed on ore systems
    • Duration: multi-year, leveraged
    • Solicited and unsolicited proposals received; preparing to award first contribution agreements
  • Grants
    • Aligned with TGI4 framework
    • Duration: up to 4 years (FY 2011-12 to FY 2014-15)Annual Funding Limit: not to exceed $40KDeadlines: Letter of Intent – October 15th, 2011; next round early 2012
  • website:
  • CCCESD the forum for cultivating our relationship
  • Areas of mutual interest and collaboration
  • Mechanisms for collaboration
    • Current
    • Future opportunities
  • We interact at different levels…