Saskatchewan Environmental Quality Guideline (SEQG)

Apr 3, 2024 | Industry News

Saskatchewan Environmental Quality Guideline (SEQG)

On February 22, 2024, the Ministry of Environment began working on addressing multiple errors in the Saskatchewan Environmental Quality Guidelines (SEQG) database.  The database was shut down to facilitate the correction process.  The ministry is pleased to advise that the updates have been completed and will be available at SEQG online by April 5, 2024. The ministry has aligned the values with the Alberta tier 1 soil and groundwater remediation guidelines.

Updates to the Endpoint Selection Standard (ESS) and the Discharge and Discovery Reporting Standard (DDRS) have been completed as well. Updates to the ESS include:

  • Pathway names were updated to align with Alberta;
  • The natural area land use was added as a fifth land use;
  • The definition of a potable water aquifer/domestic use aquifer was updated to have more clear language; and
  • Risk management with future reclamation (RMFR) was removed from the list of Tier 3 endpoints. RMFR is a type of Corrective Action Plan that may utilize any tiered endpoint of the SEQG.

Updates to the DDRS include:

  • Reportable values were updated for soil, groundwater and surface water to align with the lowest available guidelines from the SEQG; and
  • Some reportable values are now listed as VAR or variable. The user must go to the referenced document to find the correct value which is dependant on the sample characteristics (pH, temperature, hardness, or chloride concentrations).

It is important to note that the ministry has adopted Alberta’s numerical values as well as their land use and pathway terminology.  The ministry has not adopted Alberta’s tier 2 pathway elimination guidance or other supporting criteria. 

The corrected SEQG, Endpoint Selection Standard, and Discharge and Discovery Reporting Standard will take effect April 5, 2024. Reports completed before April 5, 2024 may use the previous SEQG values and standards, as long as they are correct, with respect to their cited source. Reports completed on or after April 5, 2024 shall use the corrected SEQG values and associated standards or previous SEQG values and standards if the project was initiated before April 5, 2024 and their qualified person provides justification in the report. Please contact the ministry if your project requires additional accommodations to account for the changes.