Follow-up Information: ECCC and the Prairie Provinces Water Board - Lake Diefenbaker Irrigation Expansion Project

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I would like to further follow-up with you and inform the Agency that ECCC and the Prairie Provinces Water Board ( (PPWB) has some overlapping interest in water quantity and quality at the provincial borders. The PPWB administers the Master Agreement on Apportionment which ensures that transboundary waters of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba are protected and equitably apportioned.


ECCC has been advised that an environmental assessment of the Lake Diefenbaker Irrigation Expansion Projects would ensure a wide range of issues are considered and likely result in a more robust project. The project may be located in one jurisdiction, but it is within a larger transboundary watershed.


ECCC has been notified that the PPWB typically does not participate in designation requests, and does not yet have a position on this project, nor plans for technical assessments.  The PPWB is still considering the implications of this project and are having discussion related to the project water supply requirements, downstream water quality, and climate change/future drought impacts on surface and groundwater supplies.


Prairie Provinces Water Board

The PPWB is a long-standing Fed-Prov governance body which helps facilitate collaborative water management in the Prairie region. Canada (ECCC and AAFC) and the Provinces of AB, SK and MB are members. A Master Agreement on Apportionment (signed in 1969) sets the requirements and responsibilities, and central to this agreement is ensuring that apportionment is met annually (each province must pass an agreed-upon amount of water to the downstream jurisdiction), and that transboundary water quality monitoring and reporting are done each year.  The PPWB role is principally to administer the Master Agreement on Apportionment (MAA). PPWB technical assessments can be done if a member jurisdiction has concerns that a proposed project will jeopardize the MAA requirements and/or have impacts downstream.  



Please contact me if you have questions or would like to discuss this further.



Christopher Aguirre


A/Senior Environmental Assessment Officer, Environmental Protection Branch

Environment and Climate Change Canada / Government of Canada ( / Telephone: <personal information removed>


A/Agente principal de l’évaluation environnementales, Direction générale de la protection de l’environnement

Environnement et Changement Climatique Canada / Gouvernment du Canada ( / Telephone: <personal information removed>

Submitted by
Administrator on behalf of Environment and Climate Change Canada
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