Compendium of U.S. - Canada Emergency Management Assistance Mechanisms

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National-level acts, agreements, frameworks, guidance, plans, and procedures for response operations, communication and coordination, preparedness, and recovery

June 2012

Message from the Co-Chairs of the Federal-to-Federal Assistance and Information Exchange Working Group

On October 20, 2009, the United States and Canada held the first meeting of the Consultative Group established under the U.S.-Canada Agreement on Emergency Management Cooperation. This agreement provides a framework for the U.S. and Canada to cooperate in planning for and responding to natural and man-made incidents, emergencies, and disasters. At the meeting, the Consultative Group established four working groups, including one on Federal-to-Federal assistance and information exchange.

As a deliverable, the working group proposed to develop this Compendium of U.S.-Canada Emergency Assistance Mechanisms summarizing national-level acts, agreements, frameworks, guidance, plans, and procedures for emergency response operations, communication and coordination, preparedness, and recovery.

The purpose of this Compendium is:

The Co-Chairs would like to thank the Consultative Group members and other colleagues who have contributed to the development of this Compendium. In particular, the Co-Chairs express their gratitude to Candice Abinanti of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Lisa Khouri of Public Safety Canada for their work and dedication in drafting this document.

Information contained herein may not account for more detailed operating plans, procedures, etc. under the mechanisms identified, and the Federal-to-Federal Assistance and Information Exchange Working Group welcomes suggestions for additions and improvements to this Compendium. This Compendium should be regarded as a work in progress, and suggestions may be sent to fema-international@dhs.gov or emcg-gcgu@ps-sp.gc.ca .

Federal-to-Federal Assistance and Information Exchange Working Group
U.S-Canada Consultative Group for Emergency Management Cooperation

National-level Acts, Agreements, Frameworks, Guidance, Plans, and Procedures

Summaries of the following national-level acts, agreements, frameworks, guidance, plans, and procedures for response operations, communication and coordination, preparedness, and recovery were compiled primarily through online and archival research and discussions with international and interagency colleagues. Fields of information captured for each are explained below.

Canada – U.S. Joint Marine Pollution Contingency Plan (JCP) (the "Marine" Plan)

Date Established

1983, with updates in 1984, 1986, 1990, and 2003

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

Marine pollution incidents threatening the inland or coastal waters of both countries

Scope/Function(s)

Provides a framework for Canada-U.S. cooperation in response to marine pollution incidents threatening the inland or coastal waters of both countries, or major incidents in one country where the assistance of the neighboring country is required.  Implementation of the plan is the joint responsibility of the CCG and the USCG.  The Plan is tested every two years through exercises. This plan divides the international boundary into five Regional planning areas and includes Regional Annexes that define the jurisdiction, roles and response procedures of regulatory and support agencies within each.  Each Regional Annex also covers such topics as communications, reporting systems and points of contact. Provisions and procedures referenced in the plan and its geographic annexes are intended to supplement each country's national response system and provide a "bridge" between the two systems. The plan addresses planning and preparedness, including exercises and training, operational concepts, including notification and coordinated response, funding, and reporting (Environment Canada, 2010).

Web Link

http://www.ccg-gcc.gc.ca/folios/00025/docs/canadaus_pub-eng.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

CCG (Canadian Coast Guard)
USCG (United States Coast Guard)

Activation & Implementation

Section 403 of the Marine Plan indicates that "In the event of a harmful substance incident, a coordinated response may be activated or deactivated by verbal agreement between the CCG On-scene Commander and USCG On-scene Coordinator." Activation and deactivation are followed by written confirmation for which a sample form is provided.

Geographic Annexes to the Marine Plan must include specific notification, activation and deactivation procedures. Geographic annexes to the Marine Plan must also include specific information on the response inventory available, a logistics plan, the integration of volunteers, a salvage and rescue resources inventory, and acceptable methods for disposal and decontamination.

Communication & Coordination

Liaison officers may be designated to facilitate information flow and support direct communications. Appendices to the Marine Plan provide national, geographic, and regional contacts. Geographic annexes to the Marine Plan must include specific procedures for customs and immigration clearances, a communications plan, a joint response team contact list, and public information coordination procedures.

Administration & Liability

Funding is the responsibility of each Party and addressed in section 800 of the Marine Plan.

Canada – U.S. Joint Inland Pollution Contingency Plan (the "Inland" Plan)

Date Established

1985, with updates in 1994 and 2009

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

Polluting incidents threatening 15.5 miles (25 kilometers) of the inland boundary on either side.

Scope/Function(s)

Provides for a cooperative mechanism for preparedness for and response to polluting incidents that cause, or may cause, damage to the environment along the inland boundary or may constitute a threat to public safety, security, health, welfare, or property. The Inland Plan may also facilitate the provision of assistance when only one country is affected, but the polluting incident is of such magnitude to justify a request for assistance from the other country.

The Inland Plan divides the international boundary into five Regional planning areas and includes Regional Annexes that include, among other matters, the definition of the jurisdiction, roles, and response procedures of regulatory and support agencies within specific regions of each country. Each Regional Annex may also cover such topics as notification procedures, response operations and coordination with all levels of government, industry, non-governmental organizations, customs and immigration, health and safety, and updating and exercising schedule among other topics. The current five Regional planning areas are:

  1. The combined inland boundary of the Yukon Territory and British Columbia with Montana, Alaska, Washington, Idaho -- CANUSWEST;
  2. The combined inland boundary of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba with Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota -- CANUSPLAIN;
  3. The combined inland boundary of Ontario with New York, Minnesota, Michigan -- CANUSCENT;
  4. The combined inland boundary of Quebec with Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New York -- CANUSQUE; and
  5. The combined inland boundary of New Brunswick with Maine -- CANUSEAST.

Web Link

http://www.epa.gov/oem/docs/er/us_can_jcp_eng.pdf
http://www.ec.gc.ca/ee-ue/default.asp?lang=en&n=deb16a21

Lead Organization(s)

EPA (Environmental Protection Agency)
EC (Environment Canada)

Activation & Implementation

Section 501 of the Inland Plan may be activated by the Regional Joint Response Team (RJRT) Co-chair from the country of origin of the significant polluting incident, after consultation with and consent from the RJRT Co-chair from the other country and both International Joint Advisory Team (IJAT) Co-chairs.  This activation would take place if the polluting incident is accompanied by a substantial threat of the spread of a pollutant into the inland boundary of the other country or such spreading has already occurred, or if the polluting incident is of sufficient magnitude to justify a request for assistance from the other country.  The appropriate RJRT Co-chair may activate the Inland Plan through a telephone message. The telephone message is to be followed by a written activation message (fax or email). The standard format for the written activation message as well as the activation diagram can be found in Appendix F.

Communication & Coordination

Upon receipt of an Inland Plan activation message, the IJAT Co-chairs are to notify their respective foreign relations departments that a significant polluting incident has occurred or has the potential to occur.  The Inland Plan applies to all polluting incidents along the inland boundary that have the potential for transboundary effects, and provides for a bi-national coordination mechanism to ensure appropriate and effective cooperative preparedness and response measures between Canada and the United States with respect to significant polluting incidents along the inland boundary.  In addition, it addresses notification, activation, and deactivation procedures. Sections 600 and 700 address situation reports and public information. A diagram of the Binational Concept of Operations can be found in Appendix B.

Administration & Liability

Procedures for customs and immigration clearances for response resources are outlined in each Inland Plan Regional Annex.

Canada/United States Reciprocal Forest Fire Fighting Arrangement (Public Law 101-11 (HR 829) and accompanying operating plan

Date Established

May 7, 1982

Type

Arrangement in the form of an exchange of notes and accompanying operating plan

Hazard Type

Wildland fire

Scope/Function(s)

To facilitate mutual assistance in wildland fire between Canada and the U.S.

Web Link

http://www.nifc.gov/nicc/mobguide/, see National Mobilization Guide, Chapter 40: Cooperation

Lead Organization(s)

U.S. Coordinating Authority:

Canadian Coordinating Authority:

Activation & Implementation

Requests for assistance under the operating plan are carried out through the countries respective Coordinating Authorities, the NICC and CIFFC.

Communication & Coordination

The operating plan addresses requests for assistance, designating officials, information to supply to Customs & Immigration Points of Entry (POE), and information to include in situation reporting. The operating plan also includes a "Directory of Designated Officials," updated annually.

Administration & Liability

The operating plan provides specific guidance on invoicing, payment, and reimbursement. The arrangement's diplomatic notes explicitly identify responsible parties for damages, losses, injury compensation and death benefits. Sec. 3.(2)(B) of the U.S. Wildfire Suppression Assistance Act requires agreements "include waiver by each party to the agreement of all claims against every other party to the agreement for compensation for any loss, damage, personal injury, or death occurring in consequence of the performance of such agreement."

Authority

In the U.S., Pub. L. 101-11, the Wildfire Suppression Assistance Act, permanently authorized the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Interior to enter into agreements with foreign fire organizations for assistance in wildfire protection.

Canada-U.S. Civil Assistance Plan (CAP)

Date Established

February 14, 2008 (renewed January 26, 2012)

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Section 1.a. of the CAP states its purpose "is to provide a framework for the military of one nation to provide support to the military of the other nation while in the performance of civil support operations to the primary agency (e.g., floods, forest fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, and effects of a terrorist attack)." Furthermore, "When approved, military forces from one nation augment the other nation's forces in civil support operations…"

Web Link

http://www.northcom.mil/news/2008/CAP%20-%20For%20Public%20Posting%20-%2028%20May%2008.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

Canada Command
U.S. Northern Command

Activation & Implementation

The CAP would be activated and implemented upon direction by the Government of Canada and the U.S. President or Secretary of Defense.

Annex A addresses requests for assistance and task organization. Annex C provides a concept of operations detailing phases and triggers and major actions for the phases. Annex D addresses the concept of logistics support, including levels of supplies.

Communication & Coordination

Section 1.b. of the CAP identifies "The Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT), acting on behalf of the Government of Canada (GoC), and the US Department of State (DOS), acting on behalf of the United States Government (USG), will, upon receipt of a formal request for, or offer of mutual assistance, coordinate an agreed upon bilateral response that may include military support."

Annex F provides a public affairs concept of operation, while annex J describes command relationships and lines. Annex K addresses communications and information systems. Geospatial information and services are addressed in annex M.

Administration & Liability

Annex A addresses task organization including tactical control of supporting forces. Annex C addresses operations.

Canada-United States Joint Radiological Emergency Response Plan (JRERP)

Date Established

July 27, 1996

The plan was developed under the umbrella of the 1986 Agreement between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada on Cooperation in Comprehensive Civil Emergency Planning and Management

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

Radiological emergency

Scope/Function(s)

Establishes the basis for cooperative measures to deal with a potential or actual peacetime radiological event involving Canada, the United States, or both countries. The plan is to be utilized should a potential or actual radiological event occur that can affect both countries, or occurs in one country and the magnitude requires the affected country to request assistance from the other.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

DHS/FEMA (Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency)
PS Canada (Public Safety Canada)

Activation & Implementation

Activated by mutual agreement through the exchange of Activation Messages when a radiological event presents an actual or potential threat, there is a likelihood that support resources will be required from the neighboring country, or a coordinated response and joint public messaging is needed. Appendices contain alerting, activation, and de-activation templates.

Communication & Coordination

Establishes alerting procedures, a framework of cooperative measures to reduce the threat posed to public health and safety, property, and the environment, and facilitate coordination between the Federal governments of each country to provide support to affected States and Provinces.

Appendix D of the plan identifies joint procedures between the two countries for radioactive plume trajectory and dispersion modeling.

Administration & Liability

Lead organizations are responsible for ensuring the plan is kept current.

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Co-Operation Among the Department of National Defence Canada, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans of Canada, the United States Coast Guard, the United States Air Force, the United Kingdom Maritime and Coast Guard Agency, the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Division of the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions, and the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence Concerning Search and Rescue

Date Established

Various dates, 1999

Type

Agreement

Hazard Type

Maritime or aeronautical incidents

Scope/Function(s)

The MOU establishes a framework for cooperation among the Participants for the provision of search and rescue (SAR) services in response to a maritime or aeronautical incident within the Participant's search and rescue region. A Participant may enter onto or over the territory of another Participant country for the purpose of rendering emergency rescue assistance to persons, vessels, or aircraft. Notification of such entry must be made as soon as practicable.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

USCG
U.S. Air Force
Department of National Defence Canada
Department of Fisheries and Oceans of Canada
U.K. Maritime and Coast Guard Agency
U.K. Civil Aviation Division of the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions
U.K. Ministry of Defence

Activation & Implementation

Operational MOUs and procedures among the Participants exist under this MOU. SAR operations are carried out in accordance with relevant SAR manuals and recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Organisation and the International Maritime Organisation.

Communication & Coordination

Cooperation is addressed in section six of the MOU and includes providing services in support of SAR operations, developing procedures, techniques, equipment, facilities, and information systems, and joint training and exercising.

Administration & Liability

Each Participant funds its own expenses for activities pertinent to this MOU.

Assistance to save lives and reduce suffering is provided regardless of the nationality or immigration status of persons requiring rescue.

Memorandum of Understanding on the Facilitation of Vital Civil Cross Border Transport under the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's (NATO) Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) and approved by the Senior Civil Emergency Planning Committee (SCEPC)

Date Established

The MOU came into effect for Canada on the date of signature,
June 18, 2009, and for the U.S. on June 17, 2009.

Type

Agreement

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Participants agree to facilitate vital civil cross border transport and transit in accordance with the MOU. The MOU is a multilateral tool that creates the general framework for the transport and transit of relief personnel and material from a sending Participant to a requesting Participant by water, land, or air to cope with the consequences of a disaster (e.g., a Chemical, Biological, Radiological or Nuclear [CBRN] event, accidental or other, natural or technical catastrophes).

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

The Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) is the overarching framework for consultation among Participants.

Activation & Implementation

Activated through a request from one Participant to another, Annex 1 provides agreed-upon application, notification and coordination, logistics, border crossing, additional arrangements, etc. procedures and principles for the implementation of the MOU. It is understood that Participants may further conclude additional separate arrangements to identify practical and technical details for the facilitation of vital civil cross border transport.

Communication & Coordination

The MOU calls for each Participant to designate a national contact. Basic notification procedures are also identified for sending, requesting, and transiting Participants.

Administration & Liability

The MOU includes a "Principle of territoriality" stating "Relief personnel will respect the laws of the requesting Participant or the Participants providing for the transit, and will abstain from any activity inconsistent with the present MOU. The Sending Participant will take necessary measures to that end."

Emergency Management Act

Date Established

August 2007

Type

Act

Hazard Type

All Hazard

Scope/Function(s)

The Emergency Management Act (EMA) sets out clear roles and responsibilities for all federal ministers across the full spectrum of emergency management.  This includes prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery, and critical infrastructure protection.

The Act reinforces efforts to ensure that Canada is well-prepared to mitigate, prepare for, respond to and recover from natural and human-induced risks to the safety and security of Canadians. The Act:

In consultation with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister may develop joint emergency management plans with the relevant United States' authorities and, in accordance with those plans, coordinate Canada's response to emergencies in the United States and provide assistance in response to those emergencies.

Web Link

http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/E-4.56/

Lead Organization(s)

Public Safety Canada

Activation & Implementation

Not Applicable

Communication & Coordination

The Minister of Public Safety Canada is responsible for exercising leadership at the national level relating to public safety and emergency preparedness.

In exercising the powers and in performing the duties and functions as describe in the EMA the Minister of Public Safety  may cooperate with any province, foreign state, international organization or any other entity.

Federal Emergency Response Plan (FERP)

Date Established

December 2009

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

All Hazard

Scope/Function(s)

The Emergency Management Act defines emergency management as the prevention and mitigation of, preparedness for, response to, and recovery from emergencies. Under the Emergency Management Act, the Minister of Public Safety is responsible for coordinating the Government of Canada's response to an emergency.  The Federal Emergency Response Plan (FERP) is the Government of Canada's "all-hazards" response plan.

Public Safety Canada developed FERP in consultation with other government departments.  FERP outlines the processes and mechanisms to facilitate an integrated Government of Canada response to an emergency and to eliminate the need for departments to coordinate a wider Government of Canada response.

Web Link

http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/pblctns/mrgnc-rspns-pln/index-eng.aspx

Lead Organization(s)

Public Safety Canada

Activation & Implementation

The Government Operations Centre (GOC) serves as the coordination centre for the federal response, and provides regular situation reports as well as briefing and decision-making support materials for ministers and senior officials.  As requests for information and assistance are received, they are assigned to those departments, agencies or other organizations with the applicable mandate and response capabilities to action in support of the integrated federal response. 

Communication & Coordination

Public Safety Canada Communications coordinates emergency public communications activities for the Government of Canada; between federal departments; and with provincial/territorial partners, international partners, and non-government organizations.  Communications also provides support and strategic public communications advice on issues relating to the public and media environment as part of each of the primary functions of the Federal Emergency Response Management System (FERMS).

U.S. Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as Amended, Chapter 9 – International Disaster Assistance

Date Established

1961

Type

Act

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Chapter 9, Sec. 491-493 indicates:

The following members of the EMCG typically maintain section 607 authority with United States Agency for International Development (USAID):

Web Link

http://www.usaid.gov/policy/ads/faa.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

Department of State, United States Agency for International Development) /Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance

United States Agency of International Development/Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance Guidance for Disaster Planning and Response

Date Established

Issued annually

Type

Guidance

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Provides guidance to all U.S. posts on support from USAID/ OFDA before, during, and after the occurrence of natural disasters and complex emergencies abroad to ensure timely, appropriate, and effective U.S. Government emergency and humanitarian assistance.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

USAID/OFDA is the U.S. Government's lead agency for providing international disaster and humanitarian assistance and coordinating the U.S. Government response to declared disasters in foreign countries. At each post, the Mission Disaster Relief Officer (MDRO) is the focal point for disaster-related information, planning, and activities affecting the host country.

Activation & Implementation

Humanitarian assistance from USAID/OFDA must be requested by the Chief of Mission through a disaster declaration cable after the Chief of Mission determines the disaster satisfies the following criteria:

  1. the disaster is of such magnitude that it is beyond the host country's ability to respond adequately;
  2. the host country has requested or will accept U.S. Government assistance; and
  3. it is in the interest of the U.S. Government to provide assistance.

The Chief of Mission can request from USAID/OFDA up to USD $50,000 for immediate disaster relief or rehabilitation. Deployment of USAID/OFDA regional advisors, an assessment team, or a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART); provision of relief commodities from USAID/OFDA stockpiles; and additional disaster funding are supplementary USAID/OFDA capabilities that may be requested.

Communication & Coordination

Guidance on U.S. Government and host country communications and coordination are provided, as well as listings of USAID/OFDA contacts. A recommended public message concerning donations is also provided to posts in the guidance.

U.S. National Response Framework's (NRF) International Coordination Support Annex (ICSA)

Date Established

January 2008

Type

Framework

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

A supplement to the NRF, the ICSA provides guidance on carrying out responsibilities for international coordination in support of the U.S. Federal Government's response to a domestic incident with international and diplomatic impacts and implications that call for coordination and consultations with foreign governments and international organizations.

Web Link

http://www.fema.gov/pdf/emergency/nrf/nrf-support-internatl.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

The coordinating agency is Department of State

Activation & Implementation

Responds to requests for information or support from foreign missions or U.S. federal agencies; when a U.S. domestic incident of any sort has major international implications or the potential for them. Department of States Executive Secretariat and its Operations Center establish a DOS Task Force to communicate with the U.S. National Operations Center (NOC) and other U.S. Government Agencies, as appropriate. The DOS Task Force also provides U.S. Embassies/Consulates with instruction on advising other governments and organizations on the domestic incident, and provides support to foreign missions and foreign nationals in the United States. DOS also serves as an intermediary for foreign requests/offers of assistance through the International Assistance System/Concept of Operations Plans CONOPS.

Communication & Coordination

DOS develops incident-related public affairs strategies according to the NRF Incident Communications Emergency Policy and Procedures described in the Public Affairs Support Annex and the ESF #15 – External Affairs Annex.

Administration & Liability

Not applicable

U.S. International Assistance System Concept of Operations (IAS/CONOPS)

Date Established

November 23, 2009

Type

Procedures

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Identifies internal U.S. operating procedures for addressing foreign assistance offers for a catastrophic U.S. domestic disaster declared under the Stafford Act, including:

The IAS does not address foreign offers of cash, offers to State, Tribal, or local governments, or offers from private sources. It also does not replace any bilateral agreements. Although designed to support FEMA in a Stafford Act response, the principles and procedures described in the IAS may be used as a guide to other U.S. federal response agencies for non-Stafford Act events.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

Involves DOS, FEMA, USAID/OFDA, Regulatory Agencies, and the U.S. Department of Defense.

Activation & Implementation

Activated by FEMA in extraordinary cases when the U.S. Government determines it is necessary to request or accept international offers of assistance for a catastrophic disaster response and if FEMA needs help managing the offers of assistance. The IAS is not automatically activated for every large domestic disaster.  Upon activation, FEMA mission assigns DOS, USAID/OFDA, and DOD for further support.

Communication & Coordination

The IAS CONOPS addresses roles and responsibilities among U.S. departments and agencies, and identifies policies and procedures for communication and coordination.

Administration & Liability

FEMA is authorized to accept international assistance through the IAS using its gift acceptance authority under the Stafford Act.  The IAS CONOPS identifies workers' compensation, liability, and credentials, licensing, and certifications as issues that must be addressed before service personnel may be accepted.

Communication and Coordination

Joint Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)/U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Business Resumption Communication & Coordination Plan (BR CCP)

Date Established

July 2007

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Provides the framework for communication between the two agencies to facilitate legitimate trade and travelers during a trade disruption or increase in security threat level in either country. The BR CCP is not intended as a communication plan for crisis management, incident management, or business contingency. It is intended for the coordination of communications to facilitate the resumption of trade at POEs. Communication topics may include: reporting issues, external messaging to the trade community, statements to the media, updates to and from other government agencies, and joint information sharing.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

CBP
CBSA

Activation & Implementation

May be activated and used by mutual agreement at a local, regional, or national level.

Communication & Coordination

The BR CCP details roles and responsibilities and key information to share among designated points of contact at the Headquarters, Regional, and Field Offices levels. It also addresses communications continuity, infrastructure, and joint communications to external stakeholders for consistency in messaging.

Memorandum of Cooperation between Public Safety Canada and the United States Department of Homeland Security (to promote joint efforts by the respective public affairs organizations) and Canada-US Incident Management Framework for Public Communications

Date Established

June 24, 2008

Type

Agreement and Framework

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Documents partnership between the DHS Office of Public Affairs and PS Canada. The two have developed a Canada-US Incident Management Framework for Public Communications with best practices for sharing public affairs communications materials and contact lists for use during exercises, national security incidents involving the U.S. and Canada, large-scale incidents, and international incidents involving international allies. This framework is tested annually through exercises and reviewed routinely.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

DHS Office of Public Affairs and PS Canada

Activation & Implementation

Utilized during exercises, national security incidents involving the U.S. and Canada, large-scale incidents, and international incidents involving international allies.

Communication & Coordination

Addressed in the Canada-US Incident Management Framework for Public Communications

Administration & Liability

DHS Office of Public Affairs and Public Safety Canada are each responsible for designating a first point of contact for the Memorandum, and are each further responsible for all costs of activities undertaken to support it.

Emergency Preparedness

Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America on Emergency Management Cooperation

Date Established

Entered into force July 7, 2009. Supersedes the 1986 Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America on Cooperation in Comprehensive Civil Emergency Planning and Management, which superseded the Canada-United States Agreement concerning Civil Emergency Planning from 1967.

Type

Agreement

Hazard Type

All hazards

Scope/Function(s)

This agreement establishes a Consultative Group on Emergency Cooperation between Canada and the U.S. This Group is provided broad authority to work on emergency management topics affecting both the U.S. and Canada including those involving mutual aid.

The agreement also identifies general principles of cooperation, subject to domestic laws, as a guide for civil emergency authorities. These principles include using best efforts to facilitate the movement of evacuees and emergency personnel and equipment, avoiding levying Federal taxes on services, equipment and supplies engaged in emergency activities in the territory of the other, etc.

Web Link

http://www.treaty-accord.gc.ca/text-texte.aspx?id=105173

Lead Organization(s)

Canada

United States

Activation & Implementation

This is a standing agreement that does not identify any specific activators. Principles to support the implementation of emergency activities are identified.

Communication & Coordination

The agreement contains no specific procedures for communicating and coordinating among the parties for Federal level mutual assistance.

Administration & Liability

The agreement does not address administration or liability for Federal level mutual assistance.

North American Plan for Avian and Pandemic Influenza

Date Established

August 2007

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

Avian and Pandemic Influenza

Scope/Function(s)

Outlines how Canada, Mexico and the U.S. intend to work together to combat an outbreak of avian influenza or an influenza pandemic in North America. The Plan is intended to complement existing national emergency management plans and build on international principles.

Web Link

http://www.spp-psecuritepublique.gc.ca/eic/site/spp-psp.nsf/vwapj/pandemic-influenza.pdf/$FILE/pandemic-influenza.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are the lead Federal organizations for avian and pandemic influenza preparedness and response.

Activation & Implementation

The plan provides principles for cooperation and indicates "Each country intends to use existing emergency management structures for decision making at the national level."

Communication & Coordination

The plan identifies key Federal organizations within each country.  The plan also identifies basic structure and mechanisms for trilateral emergency coordination and communication.

Administration & Liability

The plan discusses the international legal framework for coordination to protect against and control the spread of disease.

Canada-United States Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure

Date Established

2010

Type

Plan

Hazard Type

All-hazards, specific to Critical Infrastructure

Scope/Function(s)

Establishes, given the interconnectedness of U.S. and Canada critical infrastructure, a comprehensive cross-border approach to critical infrastructure resilience. It identifies specific deliverables, provides a framework for managing risks, and supports regional cross-border relations.

Web Link

http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/pblctns/cnd-ntdstts-ctnpln/index-eng.aspx

Lead Organization(s)

DHS
PS Canada

Activation & Implementation

The Action Plan is based on three objectives, building partnerships, improved information sharing, and risk management. A variety of specific actions are identified to support each.

Communication & Coordination

Specific communication and coordination actions include working together to improve sector-specific cross-border collaboration, establishing a virtual Canada-U.S. Infrastructure Risk Analysis Cell, developing compatible mechanisms and protocols to protect and share sensitive critical infrastructure information, collaborating to ensure effective information sharing during and following an incident, among others.

Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America for Cooperation in Science and Technology for Critical Infrastructure Protection and Border Security and related Cooperative Activity Arrangements

Cooperative Activity Arrangement No. 08-01 2007-05 between DHS / DNDO and Department of National Defence of Canada Concerning Radiological and Nuclear Detection

Cooperative Activity Arrangement No. 014-2009 between DHS and Defence Research and Development Canada Concerning Risk Assessment and Risk Related Domains

Date Established

June 1, 2004

Type

Agreement

Hazard Type

Physical and cyber-based critical infrastructures and border security

Scope/Function(s)

Establishes a vehicle for the conduct of cooperative scientific and technological research and development in the fields of critical infrastructure protection and border security. Areas of cooperative activity include threat, vulnerability, and risk assessments, interdependency analyses, detection and monitoring, training, emergency management, etc. through such means as joint research projects, task forces, studies, seminars, etc.

Web Link

http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/agreement_us_canada_sciencetech_cooperation_2004-06-01.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

USG, DHS/Science and Technology
GoC

Activation & Implementation

Specific joint activities are activated and implemented through Cooperative Activity Arrangements

Communication & Coordination

Agreement addresses management, contracting, finance, intellectual property, entry of personnel and equipment and material, and security. Further communication and coordination procedures are established in specific Cooperative Activity Arrangements.

Administration & Liability

Umbrella agreement creates no standing financial commitments.  Parties to Cooperative Activity Arrangements bear or share costs of implementing activities.

Transport Canada's Cross-Border Emergency Response Guide, 3rd Edition

Date Established

First edition published in 2007, third and current edition published
July 2007

Type

Planning guide

Hazard Type

Transportation accidents or spills involving dangerous goods (e.g., chemicals) or hazardous materials

Scope/Function(s)

A guide to aid pre-incident planning for both public and private emergency response planners involved in cross-border emergency response services for transportation accidents or spills involving dangerous goods or hazardous materials. (While the title is similar, this guide is not the Emergency Response Guidebook, which is for use by firefighters, police, and other emergency services personnel who may be the first to arrive at the scene of a transportation incident involving a hazardous material.)

Provides matrices listing immigration and customs agreements in place and training and liability requirements for declared, not declared, and non-emergencies for responding from the U.S. into Canada and from Canada into the U.S.

Lead Organization(s)

Transport Canada

Activation & Implementation

Not applicable.  It is a planning guide, not a response operations guide.

Communication & Coordination

Provides guidance for notification and reporting to local, provincial, and Federal authorities.

Administration & Liability

Discusses the waiver of customs and taxes, under Canadian law, for goods and equipment being brought from the U.S. into Canada for emergency response for actual or imminent emergencies and registration of these goods and equipment with border authorities.

Also discusses planning for responder training requirements and liability and insurance issues. Liability for American teams responding to an incident in Canada is discussed at length, citing important details from Canada Common Law, Federal and provincial law. Steps to reduce liability are provided.

Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, PL 100-707 (42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq.)

Date Established

Signed into U.S. law November 23, 1988

Type

Act

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

The Stafford Act constitutes the primary general statutory authority for most U.S. Federal preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery activities for domestic disasters, especially as they pertain to FEMA activities.

The Stafford Act makes the following references to "neighboring countries" defined as Canada and Mexico, in Title VI – Emergency Preparedness.

Web Link

http://www.fema.gov/pdf/about/stafford_act.pdf

Lead Organization(s)

DHS/FEMA

Activation & Implementation

The Stafford Act is a U.S. domestic authority covering the fifty (50) U.S. States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Hence, the Stafford Act cannot be activated to provide U.S. Federal Government level emergency assistance to Canada. 

Recovery

Canada-United States Framework for the Movement of Goods and People Across the Border During and Following an Emergency and annex

Maritime Annex To The Canada-United States Framework For The Movement Of Goods And People Across The Border During And Following An Emergency

Date Established

2009

Type

Framework

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

Commits the United States and Canada to work together to manage the movement of goods and people across the border during and following an incident that contributes to significant border disruption and requires national level engagement (i.e., a terrorist attack, an incident that impacts Critical Resources and Key Infrastructure [CIKR] of national interest, a request for national-level assistance).

The Maritime Annex is for managing the movement of vessels carrying goods and people between Canada and the United States during and following emergencies.

Web Link

Framework:
http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/border_management_framework_2009-05-27.pdf Maritime Annex:
http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/ntnl-scrt/crtcl-nfrstrctr/mrtm-nnx-cnd-ntd-stts-frmwrk-eng.aspx

Lead Organization(s)

Framework:
DHS
PS Canada

Maritime Annex:
DHS/USCG
Transport Canada

Activation & Implementation

Activated in the event of an incident that contributes to significant border disruption, requires national level engagement, and is one or more of the following scenarios: a terrorist attack or threat, an incident that impacts CIRKR of national interest, a request for national-level assistance.

Communication & Coordination

The Framework identifies the Deputy Secretary of DHS and Deputy Minister of PS Canada and their officials as leads for sharing incident information, communicating national priorities, and facilitating joint messaging, liaising with DOS and DFAIT.

It complements the Joint CBP / CBSA Business Resumption Communication & Coordination Plan and annexes, a framework for communication between the two during a trade disruption or increase in security threat level in either country.

U.S. Border Crossing Process for Voluntary Agency Groups/Individuals

Date Established

2007

Type

Procedures

Hazard Type

All-hazards

Scope/Function(s)

A process between FEMA and CBP to facilitate the secondary "parole" entry of groups and individuals from Canada and other countries affiliated with the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) into the United States to provide voluntary services to non-governmental organizations in support of U.S. declared disaster recovery operations.

Web Link

Not available online

Lead Organization(s)

FEMA and CBP

Activation & Implementation

Voluntary organization activates the process by providing a list of volunteers and other information to FEMA no later than one week prior to U.S. entry.

Communication & Coordination

FEMA verifies the information provided by the voluntary organization on the groups and individuals and sends a request letter to CBP. CBP reviews the information and forwards to the Point of Entry (POE) for consideration.

Administration & Liability

Groups and individuals must be "credentialed" by the voluntary organization they represent. Tools and equipment being transported must be registered with CBP to ensure return to its country of origin. CBP vetting includes verification of proper travel documents, and submission of fingerprints and a photograph.

Other

Immigration

Personnel should submit to the Point of Entry (POE) the following information in advance:

Customs

(b) The Secretary of the Treasury may provide by regulation or instruction for the admission, without entry and without the payment of duty or tax imposed upon or by reason of importation of:

(2) fire-fighting and rescue and relief equipment and supplies for emergent temporary
use in connection with conflagrations [great and destructive fires];

(3) rescue and relief equipment and supplies for emergent temporary use in connection
with floods and other disasters.

The following equipment information should be provided to the POE in advance:

Operators of vehicles, vessels, trains, and aircrafts transporting goods to Canada should:

Urban Search and Rescue (USAR)

http://ochaonline.un.org/OCHAHome/AboutUs/Coordination/INSARAG/tabid/6016/language/en-US/Default.aspx

Acronyms

BR CCP
Joint CBP/CBSA Business Resumption Communication & Coordination Plan
CAP
Canada-U.S. Civil Assistance Plan
CBP
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
CBSA
Canada Border Services Agency
CCG
Canadian Coast Guard
CIFFC
Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre Inc.
CIKR
Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources
DFAIT
Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
DHS
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
DOS
U.S. Department of State
EC
Environment Canada
EPA
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
FAA
U.S. Foreign Assistance Act
FEMA
Federal Emergency Management Agency
FERMS
Federal Emergency Response Management System
FERP
Federal Emergency Response Plan
GoC
Government of Canada
GOC
Government Operations Center
HHS
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
IAS/CONOPS
International Assistance System Concept of Operations
INSARAG
International Search and Rescue Advisory Group
JRERP
Canada-United States Joint Radiological Emergency Response Plan
MOU
Memorandum of Understanding
NICC, NIFC
National Interagency Coordination Center, National Interagency Fire Center
NOC
U.S. National Operations Center
NRF/ICSA
U.S. National Response Framework's International Coordination Support Annex
PHAC
Public Health Agency of Canada
POE
Point of Entry
PS Canada
Public Safety Canada
SAR
Search and Rescue
USAID/OFDA
U.S. Agency for International Development/Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance
USAR
Urban Search and Rescue
USCG
U.S. Coast Guard
USG
United States Government
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