The Ontario Association for Impact Assessment (OAIA), a forum for exchanging information and promoting best practice in impact assessment in Ontario, is organizing its annual conference. The conference will take place on Thursday, October 14 & Friday, October 15, 2010 at Tabaret Hall, University of Ottawa and is entitled: Revisiting Federal Environmental Assessment Policy and Practice.

With the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act undergoing Parliamentary review this year, it is time to take stock, identify what is working well and what needs to be improved in federal environmental practice. At this year’s Annual Conference, we will examine the policy landscape with a view to identifying policy and practice recommendations that OAIA could eventually present to the Parliamentary Review. We are inviting various perspectives on selected issues about environmental assessment practice to provide insight on relevant considerations and options. The two day conference will cater to a broad audience with Day One focusing on broad policy issues related to federal EA. Day Two is aimed at practitioners and will feature a series of panel discussions on topics such as regional EA, approaches to stakeholder involvement, outcomes-based EA and adaptive management. The annual conference also provides students a chance to present posters on EA practice.
The 2010 conference examined the future of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and and how the practice works today and how it may change in the future. The conference was filled with experts from across Ottawa and Ontario who informed us about Environmental Assessment practice, Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and provided professional insights into the work of EA practitioners.

Our attendees were unanimous in their support. Here are some of their remarks:
  • Interesting comments from government, ENGO’s and consultants.
  • Great price, many good speakers, well organized, thematic.
  • It was a diverse, dynamic, and interactive conference. A lot of useful information, important to understand general picture of the CEAA and Federal government activities.
  • I appreciated the focus made on SEA and it’s alignment with the Federal Sustainability Development Strategy..
  • The timing of the conference was perfect for allowing discussion. The selection of topics and speakers for panels was superb. Great printed materials.
  • The way that the conference program set-up (brief talks/discussion/breaks) was very effective in keeping the crowd interested.
Speakers at our conference each received a certificate noting that a donation was made in their honour to Ecology Ottawa. For more information on Ecology Ottawa go to: http://www.ecologyottawa.ca/
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