Start a Natural Resource Major Project

Natural resource major projects use a coordinated approach to manage the multiple government permits, approvals, and authorizations required for each project.

On this page:

The process

A major natural resource project needs multiple applications and permits. Companies need to work closely with FrontCounter BC, natural resource ministries, and a major project team representative to coordinate the permits they need before they can start development.

Applications and proposals for most natural resource major projects are submitted to FrontCounter BC where the team assesses project type, size and complexity.

Applications and proposals for LNG projects are submitted to the B.C. Oil & Gas Commission.

Phase

Activities

Investigation
  • Assess the feasibility of a site for the proposed purpose
  • Determine existing interests in the land
  • Identify values and conduct baseline studies on many of those values
  • This may require separate authorizations (i.e. Crown land authorization)

Pre-application

  • Provide an overview of project activities
  • Scope proposed project to determine potential conflicts, required permits and tenures
  • Identify application package requirements and submission
  • Identify and engage First Nations involved
  • Outline project-specific process and timelines

Submission and screening

  • Proponent submits application package
  • Government screens application package to ensure all requirements and submission standards are met

Review and recommendation

  • Formal technical review of submitted application package
  • Identification and resolution of technical issues related to the proposed project (e.g. overlapping tenures, mitigation)
  • Engagement and consultation with First Nations
  • Coordinated consultation with all levels of government
  • Public review and comment (as required)

Decision

  • Decision package preparation; authorization documents are drafted and submitted
  • Provincial statutory decision makers adjudicate the applications submitted by the proponent
  • Statutory decision makers can approve application(s) with conditions, disallow application(s), or request further information

Implementation and closeout

  • Coordinated reviews of all monitoring and reporting requirements
  • Ensure project aligns with required conditions
  • Coordinate compliance and enforcement of authorizations

Environmental Assessment Review

Projects usually need to complete an environmental assessment and receive a certificate before permitting can begin. This doesn’t include permits required for the initial investigation phase

For more information visit the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office website.

Concurrent permitting

To get necessary approvals quicker, proponents can apply through the Environmental Assessment Office for a concurrent review of authorizations while the environmental assessment review is underway. In the absence of an Environmental Assessment Certificate, project teams will need to provide plenty of detailed information to ministries to base their decisions on and issue permits.

Review the Concurrent Approval Regulation.