Learn about the City's environmental policies and regulations
Our environmental policies and regulations highlight our commitment to protecting environmentally sensitive areas (ESA) and maintaining healthy ecosystems. Any development on or near ecologically sensitive sites must comply with these policies. Work near streams, wetlands or lakes may need to go through the City's Environmental Review Committee (ERC) process.
Explore examples of successful eco-system restoration on development sites.
Strategic planning for eco-system protection
- The Environmental Sustainability Strategy emphasizes the importance of eco-systems for human well-being and prosperity and commits to taking an eco-system approach to decision making.
- The environment section in the Official Community Plan identifies some key ESAs as green zones and outlines an Environmental Policy Framework that includes the protection of environmentally sensitive areas (ESAs).
- Since the 1970s, the City has had an open watercourse policy that preserves a network of more than 90 streams contained within our 3 main watersheds. Examples of a few completed watershed plans:
Development planning and review
- ERC reviews development proposals for compliance with City policies for eco-system protection, including the Streamside Protection and Enhancement Areas Bylaw.
- Refer to our guide for developing near streams in Burnaby to plan your development project.
- The Watercourse Bylaw prohibits fouling or impeding any watercourse or drainage system.
- The Total Stormwater Management Approach Policy establishes on-site retention, infiltration and treatment of stormwater for new development and redevelopment to protect downstream watercourses.
- Landscaping for single and two-family dwellings guides the creation of 'soft landscaping' to help rainwater soak into the ground and preserve downstream watercourses.