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Is your property in the EDPA in Saanich?

You may have heard abou the EDPA, the Environmental Development Permit Area in the news or from neighbours if you live in Saanich. The EDPA has been in place since 2012 to protect and restore rare ecosystems and vital habitat. The three objectives of the EDPA are to,

  1. Protect biodiversity,
  2. Mitigate damage during construction 
  3. Restore degraded ecosystems.

The EDPA is made up of :

  • An Atlas to id where the Environmentally Significant Areas (ESAs) and their buffers are located.
  • A long list of exemptions to maintain & use your property
  • A set of guidelines to ensure that development in the buffers does not harm the ESA
  • A requirement for restoration where improvements to habitat would be beneficial as part of a development application

Some interesting facts:

  • 52% of the EDPA is located on public land (mostly parks)
  • 5% of private properties are within or partially within the EDPA
  • 40% of ESAs are not protected by the EDPA
  • Only 8 EDPA applications are received annually
  • Only 5% of the original extent of Garry Oak Ecosystems remain in Saanich
  • Many municipalities have an EDPA to protect the environment

The EDPA protects:

  • Bald Eagle and Great Blue Heron nests-they are used year after year
  • Sensitive ecosystems-the rarest and most significant natural areas
  • Wetlands and Watercourses- isolated from fish but provide habitat
  • Marine Backshore-“riparian” habitat that connects the land to the sea
  • Habitat of Rare and Endangered plants, animals and ecosystems

For all the details on the EDPA please see www.saanich.ca/edpa
If you are buying or selling in Saanich, be sure to check the map provided on the website to see if the property of interest is in any of these areas.