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Threats and risks to Canadians and Canada are becoming increasingly complex due to the diversity of natural hazards affecting our country and the growth of transnational threats arising from the consequences of terrorism, globalized disease outbreaks, climate change, critical infrastructure interdependencies and cyber attacks. A key function of the Government of Canada is to protect the safety and security of Canadians. Effective EM results from a coordinated approach and a more uniform structure across federal government institutions.
A SEMP establishes a federal government institution's objectives, approach and structure for protecting Canadians and Canada from threats and hazards in their areas of responsibility and sets out how the institution will assist the coordinated federal emergency response. The development and employment of a SEMP is an important complement to such existing plans, because it promotes an integrated and coordinated approach to emergency management planning within federal institutions and across the federal government.
Federal government institutions in the early stages of developing a SEMP may find it useful to read the material in Sections One and Two, while other institutions with more established plans may wish to proceed directly to Section Three. Supporting templates and tools can contribute to effective emergency management planning and are provided with this Guide. The Emergency Management Planning Guide uses a step-by-step approach and provides instructions that are supplemented by the Blueprint and the Strategic Emergency Management Plan (SEMP) template provided in Annexes A and B, respectively. The Emergency Management Planning Unit, Public Safety Canada, is responsible for producing, revising and updating this Guide.
The purpose of this Guide is to assist federal officials, managers and coordinators responsible for emergency management (EM) planning. The EM plans of federal government institutions should address the risks to critical infrastructure within or related to the institution's areas of responsibility, as well as the measures for protecting this infrastructure.
The SEMP is the overarching plan that provides a comprehensive and coordinated approach to EM activities. Given this variety of EM planning documents, the distinctions between them are summarized in the following table.
A SEMP establishes a federal government institution's objectives, approach and structure for protecting Canadians and Canada from threats and hazards in their areas of responsibility, and sets out how the institution will assist the coordinated federal emergency response. It 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.
It includes 13 emergency support functions that the federal government can implement in response to an emergency. Operational plans may be based on all four pillars of EM planning, or focus on the specific activities of a single pillar. The National Strategy and Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure establishes a public-private sector approach to managing risks, responding effectively to disruptions, and recovering swiftly when incidents occur. Implementation of the Strategy will feature targeted and accurate information products, such as security briefings for each critical infrastructure sector.
Emergency management (EM) refers to the management of emergencies concerning all hazards, including all activities and risk management measures related to prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. The Emergency Management Continuum is depicted in a wheel diagram where all four risk-based functions of emergency management are interconnected and interdependent in a system from prevention and mitigation to preparedness, response, and recovery. In the center of the wheel are the main elements that influence the development of a Strategic Emergency Management Plan (SEMP). Figure 1 highlights the four interdependent risk-based functions of EM: prevention and mitigation of, preparedness for, response to, and recovery from emergencies. The SEMP should ideally be reviewed on a cyclical basis as part of a federal government institution's planning cycle, as presented in Figure 2 below. This figure represents the optimal planning cycle federal institutions should consider for undertaking their emergency management planning activities.
May: Senior Institutional Management reviews year-end reports from the previous year's activities. September: Senior Institutional Management conducts mid-year check on progress of key performance objectives. February: Senior Institutional Management makes decision regarding the institution's strategic priorities for the upcoming fiscal year.
This section of the Guide outlines a recommended approach for developing a tailored SEMP and is supported by a blueprint and a SEMP template provided in Annexes A and B, respectively. Please note that Step 5 is presented under Section Four: Implementing and Maintaining the SEMP.
Each step identifies inputs or considerations at the outset and concludes with the associated outputs. This step involves starting the formal planning process in recognition of the responsibility to prepare a SEMP.
Consider having members of the EM planning team designated by your institution's senior management.
One of the most crucial steps in the EM planning process is to identify appropriate members for the EM planning team.
Consider including a member of your institution's corporate planning area on the EM planning team in order to help align the EM planning cycle with the institution's overall business planning cycle. Federal government institutions should consider identifying the range of experience and skill sets required in the EM planning team. The team members should have the skills and training required to adequately carry out their assigned duties.
The team members should have the skills and training required to adequately carry out their assigned duties.
The composition of the EM planning team will vary depending on institutional requirements; however, it is important that clear terms of reference (TOR) for the team be established and that individual assignments be clearly defined.
After the EM planning team has clear authority and direction, the next step is to review any relevant existing legislation and policies.
Consider giving a team member the responsibility of analyzing the legislative and policy obligations applicable to the development of the SEMP.
As noted in Section Two, the EM planning process should be carried out as part of an institution's overall strategic and business planning processes—this will support their alignment. Developing the SEMP can be supported by a formal work or project plan to ensure that established timelines for plan development are met. As a next step, federal government institutions should consider developing a comprehensive understanding of the planning context.
Additional supporting planning tools and templates as well as an EM glossary are provided in Annexes C and D, respectively.
An environmental scan involves being aware of the context in which an institution is operating so as to understand how it could be affected.
As part of the environmental scan, the institution defines the internal and external parameters to be taken into account when managing the risk and setting the scope and risk criteria for the remaining risk assessment process. Additionally, federal government institutions are responsible for conducting mandate-specific risk assessments, including risks to critical infrastructure. The Planning Context is represented in a target diagram that consists of three circles representing the factors federal institutions should consider in order to understand the context in which it operates and how it could potentially be affected. The outer and middle circles represent the external context in which the institution seeks to achieve its objectives. Understanding the internal context is essential to confirm that the risk assessment approach meets the needs of the institution and of its internal stakeholders. Understanding the external context is important to ensure that external stakeholders, their objectives and concerns are considered.
Consider reviewing your federal government institution's most current environmental scan, as well as the most current RCMP Environmental Scan (which can be found on the RCMP Web site), in order to develop a better understanding of pressures and issues facing your institution.
Once all documentation is identified, consider conducting a gap analysis to determine whether the institution is currently meeting its obligations as identified in Step 1. During this process, consider conducting a full review and analysis of stakeholder documentation and reports. An inventory of critical assets and services will assist the planning team in identifying the associated threats, hazards, vulnerabilities and risks unique to their institution.
If a business impact analysis (BIA) has already been completed for your federal government institution's BCP, this analysis can greatly inform your criticality assessment.
When conducting a criticality assessment, it is important to be objective when prioritizing the importance of institutional assets, as not all assets are critical to an institution's operations. Adopting the current Treasury Board Policy related to material and asset management and coding criteria will help structure an effective approach. A comprehensive but non-exhaustive list of hazards and threats relevant to the Canadian context can be found in Annex C, Appendix 3.
Traditionally, a threat assessment is an analysis of intent and capabilities in the occurrence of a threat.
A vulnerability assessment looks at an inadequacy or gap in the design, implementation or operation of an asset that could enable a threat or hazard to cause injury or disruption.
In order to identify vulnerabilities, an institution should first identify and assess existing safeguards associated with critical assets and activities. Risk assessment is central to any risk management process as well as the EM planning cycle. The output of the risk assessment process is a clear understanding of risks, their likelihood and potential impact on achieving objectives.
The all-hazards risk assessment (AHRA) process should be open and transparent while respecting the federal institution's context. In this section, risks translate into events or circumstances that, if they materialize, could negatively affect the achievement of government objectives. Once the institution's context is clearly understood (refer to the environmental scan in Step 2-1), the next step is to find and recognize hazards, threats and possibly trends and drivers, and to describe them in risk statements. Risks can be identified though several mechanisms: structured interviews, brainstorming, affinity grouping, risk source analysis, checklists and scenario analysis.
A risk register or log is used to record information about identified risks and to facilitate the monitoring and management of risks. The objective of risk analysis is to understand the nature and level of each risk in terms of its impact and likelihood. Qualitative analysis is conducted where non-tangible aspects of risk are to be considered, or where there is a lack of adequate information and the numerical data or resources necessary for a statistically significant quantitative approach. Consider consulting your institution's subject matter experts when evaluating quantitative likelihood through historical data, simulation models and other methods. Consequences can be expressed in terms of monetary, technical, operational, social or human impact criteria. The purpose of risk evaluation is to help make decisions about which risks need treatment and the priority for treatment implementation. Risk criteria are based on internal and external contexts and reflect the institution's values, objectives, resources and risk appetite (over-arching expression of the amount and type of risk an institution is prepared to take). Risks can be prioritized by comparing risks in terms of their individual likelihood and impact estimates. The risk-rating matrix allows for decisions to be made about which risks need treatment and the priority for treatment implementation.
Risk treatment options can be prioritized by considering risk severity, effectiveness of risk controls, cost and benefits, the horizontal nature of the risk, and existing constraints.
Consider gathering a list of institutional risks and cross-referencing the existing plans (as identified in Step 2-1c) that address each risk.
This step will contribute to the concept that sound EM decision-making can be based on an understanding and evaluation of hazards, vulnerabilities and related risks. This step focuses on developing an informed EM approach for your institution based on the four pillars of EM.
Each institution should establish an EM governance structure to oversee the management of emergencies. In identifying members of your institution's EM governance structure, keep in mind the relationship between your institution's mandate and the four pillars of EM. It is important that the planning team confirm the strategic priorities of the institution and of senior management so that they can be reflected in the SEMP. Consider developing an overview of these priorities and identifying potential areas for attention given risk probabilities and vulnerabilities. The planning team should aim to clearly identify the planning constraints and institutional limitations that will influence the SEMP building blocks and the subsequent development of the SEMP. The cross-reference table of existing plans by identified institutional risks provided in Annex C, Appendix 4, can assist in cross-referencing your most prevalent risks and the tools in place to address them (such as existing plans). A SEMP should inform each federal government institution's overall priorities and tie into its business and strategic planning activities. The objective of planning activities associated with prevention and mitigation efforts is to reduce risk.
The objective of planning activities associated with preparedness is to have an effective and coordinated approach to EM and operational readiness.
Federal government institutions should consider personnel surge capacity requirements in their plans to support sustained operations, as well as the ability to react to any additional hazard or event that may occur while the response and recovery operations are taking place. The objective of planning activities associated with institutional responses to changing threats, hazards or specific incidents is to have an effective and integrated response in accordance with established strategic priorities. Think about engaging your communications branch so that they are aware of internal and external communications requirements. The objective of planning activities associated with the recovery component of EM is to provide for the restoration and continuity of critical services and operations. Once the event is over and response operations are completed, federal institutions should participate in any whole-of-government reviews as appropriate.
The SEMP establishes a federal government institution's objectives, approach and structure for protecting Canadians and Canada from threats and hazards in their areas of responsibility, and sets out how the institution will assist the coordinated federal emergency response.
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This document provides a brief introduction to tools that assist in understanding the cyclical interlinkages between environmental management and disaster risk reduction. While these tools are an adaptation of existing environmental management tools applied to integrating environment and disaster risk reduction, many other tools also exisit, developed by specific organizations and institutions. Creating an environmental profile (EP) of an area or community is a first and critical step in understanding the interactions between the local environment and disaster vulnerabilities it faces.
An 'environmental profile' (EP) provides a systematic overview of the development, environment and disaster setting, and institutional arrangements of an urban area, which is designed to highlight the environment-disaster interactions, the critical issues, and the sectors and stakeholders directly concerned with them. In this tool, a brief introduction to the social, economic and physical features of the city is made. Eco and Hazard Mapping (EHM) is a visual tool that creates an inventory of environmental assets of an area or community, and the vulnerabilities and risks it faces. Eco and Hazard Mapping (EHM) is a systematic but simple method of conducting an on-site environmental review by collecting information which shows the current situation using pictures and maps.
EHM has been an effective, systematic means of inventorying environmental practices and problems, communicating environmental issues to urban residents, engaging them in environmental practices, and implementing action at the local level. EHM is a very visual tool that uses plans and maps of buildings and neighbourhoods to identify and mark the environmental aspects of the urban setting, and the potential hazards and risks that they pose. Environmental Risk Assessment is a systematic analysis of the likelihood that the environment will experience a specified level of harm as a result of a natural disaster or a planned human activity. ERA is a well developed and systematic tool that provides the necessary information to take decisions that will mitigate and reduce the risks faced by vulnerable communities – whether from man-made aspects (such as chemical accidents or development projects) or natural aspects (such as earthquakes and tyhpoons). Environmental Impact Assessment is a formal process used to predict the environmental consequences of a project or an event. Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a structured procedure designed to help ensure that projects and programmes are environmentally sound and sustainable. It allows informed decision making on the action to be taken, and establishes a monitoring and environmental management regime for implementing mitigation measures, monitoring impacts for compliance and ascertaining if impacts are as predicted. The EIA tool, well known for the assessment of development projects such as a dam or a complex of factory buildings, can also be used for disaster planning and management. Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) is a process to ensure that significant environmental effects arising from disasters are identified, assessed, mitigated, communicated to decision-makers, monitored and that public involvement is ensured.
Strategic Environmental Assessment is a systematic process for evaluating the environmental consequences of policies, plans, programmes or proposals, to ensure that they are addressed early in the decision making process and on par with economic and social considerations . Undertaking SEAs can also contribute to sustainable development goals, promote accountability and credibility among the general public and specific stakeholders, and lead to broader policy coherence.
For simplicity, SEA can be broken down into different activities conducted alongside the development of disaster mitigation plans or programmes, and consideration of alternative options.
Stage A: Local authorities needs to consider the availability of background information and propose objectives and indicators for the SEA. Stage B: Local authorities decide the likely scope of the environmental report, and what level of detail to be examined.
Stage C: Local authorities assess the likely effects on the environment of the evolving plan, and its alternatives. An Environmental Management Systems (EMS) is a systematic way to ensure environmental issues are managed consistently and systematically.
It sets out environmental policies, objectives and targets for the implementing organization, with pre-determined indicators that provide measurable goals, and a means of determining if the performance level has been reached. Integrating environment and disaster dimensions in local planning processes is a complex mix of consultation, dialogue and monitoring involving all critical stakeholders, particularly the vulnerable communities. Having stakeholders review their own plans to ensure a coordinated response, and identify lacks and gaps.
Identifying resources needed, making necessary changes to improve plans, and integrating them into an overall community plan. Educating and training participating groups about the integrated plan, including emergency responders. Ultimately, a multi-stakeholder knowledge sharing mechanism at the local level goes a long way in ensuring that all aspects of the local environment are considered in disaster mitigation and preparedness plans.
Inventorize institutional and individual knowledge gained from responding to the tsunami disaster by developing a database of strategies, policies, programmes and projects being undertaken.
Channel scarce funds to appropriate and critical areas that need them, by networking with communities and organizations to enable matching offers and requests.
Post-disaster situations are equally important in integrating and interlinking environmental aspects with disaster management.
UNEP, "Environmental Risk Assessment: A Practitioner's Guide" United Nations Environment Programme, 2003.
Detailed background on CISSP exam Domain 7, covering business continuity and disaster recovery. Disaster recovery focuses on how to survive a disaster and what to do right after a disaster. Business continuity and disaster recovery planning: Management leadership, goals and requirements, business impact analysis, team building and implementation.
Backup alternatives: Hardware and software approaches, collocation, electronic vaulting, offsite facilities requirements and types.
Recovery and testing: Strategies for executing recovery, carrying out drills and types of plan testing.
Business continuity and disaster recovery planning It's critical that companies understand the degree of potential damage and revenue losses that different types of business interruptions can cause. The main goals of a business continuity plan are to improve responsiveness by the employees in different situations, ease confusion by providing written procedures and participation in drills and help ensure logical decisions are made during a crisis. Backup alternatives When we think of backup, we generally think of secure, offsite tape storage that will be available should we accidentally damage or destroy a needed file. The necessary software -- the operating systems, programs and utilities used during regular business -- must also be backed up regularly to the offsite facility. Too often our attention is only on backing up data and technology, and we over look people and the necessary skill set to continue the operation of the company.
Recovery and testing After a disaster, there are usually two teams assembled -- the salvage team that assesses damage and works to bring the primary facility back on-line, and the recovery team that coordinates bringing up the alternative site. Emergency response Finally, emergency response drills are necessary not only to minimize asset damage and preserve life, but to reduce the chance of fraud, theft and vandalism since the security mechanisms usually in place may be completely disabled. There's a growing trend of machine learning in the cloud and security should take advantage of it.
Cloud identity management can offer a lot of security benefits, but enterprises need to answer some questions before deployment. In today's threat landscape, proactive risk management is needed to stay on top of a surge of network and security alerts.
Two weeks into a new CIO job at a global bank, Harvey Koeppel was faced with a cybersecurity threat halfway across the globe. Emergencies can quickly escalate in scope and severity, cross jurisdictional lines, take on international dimensions and result in significant human and economic losses.
Federal government institutions are increasing their focus on emergency management (EM) activities, given the evolving risk environment in their areas of responsibility. This is why Public Safety Canada has developed this Emergency Management Planning Guide, which is intended to assist all federal government institutions in developing their all-hazards Strategic Emergency Management Plans (SEMPs).
Many federal government institutions already have specific planning documents or processes to deal with aspects of emergency management that relate to their particular mandates; many also have a long track record of preparing and refining BCPs. An All-Hazards Risk Assessment Framework and associated tools are also under development and will be included in a subsequent version of the Guide.
As a matter of process, the Emergency Management Planning Guide will be reviewed annually or as the situation dictates, and amendments will be made at that time. The Guide includes a Blueprint (see Annex A), a Strategic Emergency Management Plan (SEMP) template (see Annex B), and supporting step-by-step instructions, tools and tips to develop and maintain a comprehensive SEMP—an overarching plan that establishes a federal government institution's objectives, approach and structure, which generally sets out how the institution will assist with coordinated federal emergency management, including response. As such, federal institutions are to base EM plans on mandate-specific all-hazards risk assessments, as well as put in place institutional structures to provide governance for EM activities and align them with government-wide EM governance structures. It reflects leading practices (such as those provided by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and Canadian Standards Association) and procedures within the Government of Canada, and should be read in conjunction with the Federal Emergency Response Plan, the Emergency Management Framework for Canada and the Federal Policy for Emergency Management. It should integrate and coordinate elements identified in operational plans and business continuity plans (BCPs). Each of these functions addresses a need that may arise before or during an emergency. It is intended that governments and industry partners will work together to assess risks to the sector, develop plans to address these risks, and conduct exercises to validate the plans. This work at the sector level will inform, and will be informed by, work at the organizational level such as EM plans and their component parts. Those elements are as follows: Environmental Scan, Leadership Engagement, All-Hazards Risk Assessment, Training, Exercise, Capability Improvement Process, and Performance Assessment. These functions can be undertaken sequentially or concurrently, and they are not independent of each other. In order to effectively depict the cycle, the four seasons are placed in a wheel diagram showing how spring, summer, fall, and winter are interconnected and continuously flow into one circle. The upcoming year's critical objectives are indentified with input from the various Working Groups and the appropriate Business Lines. Emergency Management resource requirements should be identified as early as possible to integrate into plans. Inputs should ideally be assembled, reviewed and well understood prior to engaging in each distinct planning activity as they form an important foundation for the work to be completed. The SEMP should be central to the federal government institution's EM activities and provide clear linkages for integrating and coordinating all other intra-departmental and inter-departmental emergency management plans. The size and composition of the team may vary between federal government institutions; however, the planning team should ideally have the skill and experience necessary to develop the SEMP. This team should be established under the authority of the institution's governance framework and have clear directions, including objectives. Training is available to address EM requirements at the Canadian Emergency Management College (CEMC) and the Canada School of Public Service. Training is available to address EM requirements at the Canadian Emergency Management College (CEMC) and the Canada School of Public Service.
These TOR can identify the responsibilities assigned to each team member and the requirements to allow that member to carry out the assigned function.
This is also an ideal time to involve institutional legal advisors to determine whether legislative requirements are being met. Update the analysis regularly, as legislation and policies can change and have an influence on the scope of your SEMP. After completing the above steps, the planning team should consider developing a detailed work plan that includes a schedule with realistic timelines, milestones that reflect the institutional planning cycle, and a responsibility assignment matrix with assigned tasks and deadlines. It entails a process of gathering and analyzing information and typically considers both internal and external factors (see Figure 3: The Planning Context for additional information on the factors to consider).
It sets the time, scope and scale and contributes to adopting an approach that is appropriate to the situation of the institution and to the risks affecting the achievement of its objectives.
The key to any emergency planning is awareness of the potential situations that could impose risks on the organization and on Canadians and to assess those risks in terms of their impact and potential mitigation measures.
It is the environment in which the institution operates to achieve its objectives and which can be influenced by the institution to manage risk.
If gaps are identified, these should ideally be gathered and presented as part of Step 3 when developing the EM Planning Framework and confirming the institution's strategic EM priorities. Assets can be both tangible and intangible and can be assessed in terms of importance, value and sensitivity. All available threat assessments should ideally be reviewed by analyzing the assessment's evaluation of hostile capability, intentions and activity, the environment influencing hostile and potentially hostile groups, and environmental considerations, including natural, health and safety hazards. For further information, you may wish to consult the Canadian Disaster Database, which contains detailed disaster information on over 900 natural, technological and conflict events (excluding war) that have directly affected Canadians over the past century. A threat awareness collection process should ideally link to the federal institution's information requirements and available resources. As appropriate, more specific terrorist threat and hazard information can be obtained from ITAC. With respect to known threats and hazards, a vulnerability exists when there is a situation or circumstance that, if left unchanged, may result in loss of life or may affect the confidentiality, integrity or availability of other mission-critical assets. It is a formal, systematic process for estimating the level of risk in terms of likelihood and consequences for the purpose of informing decision-making.
It provides improved insight into the effectiveness of risk controls already in place and enables the analysis of additional risk mitigation measures. A risk assessment should generate a clear understanding of the risks, including their uncertainties, their likelihood and their potential impact on objectives. It should be tailored to the institution's needs and should identify any limitations such as insufficient information or resource constraints. Risks should be described in a way that conveys their context, point of origin and potential impact.
Characterization of risks should use an appropriate breadth and scope; it can be difficult to establish a course of action to treat risks if the scope is too broad, while a scope that is too narrow will create too much information, thereby making it difficult to establish priorities.
A risk register will typically describe each risk, assess the likelihood that it will occur, list possible consequences if it does occur, provide a grading or prioritization for each risk, and identify proposed mitigation strategies. Probabilistic methods provide more information on the range of risks and can effectively capture uncertainty, but require more data and resources. It is usually used for analyzing threats with less tangible intent (judgements on terrorism, sabotage, etc.).
Subject matter experts can also assist in evaluating likelihood from a qualitative perspective, for instance by using a Delphi technique (a group communication process for systematic forecasting).


Additional information on analyzing likelihood and impact is provided in the Treasury Board Integrated Risk Management Framework Guidelines. Prioritization can be shown graphically in a logarithmic risk diagram, risk-rating matrix or other forms of visual representations. In order to prioritize risks, comparison is made based on their likelihood and impact estimates. Treatments that deal with negative consequences are also referred to as risk mitigation, risk elimination, risk prevention, risk reduction, risk repression and risk correction. These treatment options, forming recommendations, would be used to develop the risk treatment step in the risk management or emergency management cycle. A sample cross-reference table of existing plans by identified institutional risks is provided in Annex C, Appendix 4.
The resulting SEMP building blocks will reflect strategic priorities—the desired balance between developing measures that respond to emergencies versus mitigating the risk. The EM planning governance structure may include representatives of an institution's senior management team, from all functional areas (such as programs) and all corporate areas (including communications, legal services and security). It is also crucial that roles and responsibilities, lines of accountability and decision-making processes be aligned and well understood by all concerned. For example, an institution can be constrained by the availability of training for EM planning team members and by the number of EM positions they have staffed. A further cross-referencing can then be undertaken with the four pillars of EM to help target specific activities in one or more of the following areas. The ICS helps to promote clear lines of authority, is scalable to large or small events, and is widely used by first responders such as police or fire departments in various jurisdictions. The cross-reference table provided in Annex C, Appendix 5, as stated above, can serve as a tool to complete this task.
It should be strategic and be designed to have safeguards and processes to trigger appropriate actions in response to changing threats and hazards, as well as in response to specific incidents and events. Each of the tools provide different methodologies and results, and enable different decisions to be taken. Examples include UNEP's APELL and UNOCHA's FEAT (See the Tools section for more information). The city's various sectors, their characteristics, use of environmental resources and impact on environmental resources are mentioned under ‘Development Setting’. It covers a range of issues, including information on the current situation, problems areas, water, sewage, soil, air, energy, waste, etc.
Due to the simplicity of this inventory process, multi-stakeholder participation is easily enabled. Risk is the likelihood that a harmful consequence will occur as a result of an action , including those from natural or man-made disasters. The use of ERA in environmental planning and management is fast becoming a standard practice, either as a stand alone procedure or as a support or complement to an EIA. It calls for the clear identification and formulation of the problem and characterize the risks posed as a result. Like the ERA tool, it enables informed decision making on the development of a city, but also in preparing for disasters (whether natural or man-made), and in monitoring and evaluation of the action taken. Applied to disaster management, it also helps in understanding the environmental consequences of pre- and post-disaster activities. Effectively applied, an EMS can help integrate environmental considerations within a larger disaster management plan.
Due to its complexity and wide scope, a multi-stakeholder partnership that plans, implements and reviews programmes is absolutely important. Today, approximately 65% of companies could not stay in business if they had to be closed for a week or longer. These plans are usually technology-oriented and focus on getting the network and systems up and running as quickly as possible.
Qualitative and quantitative impact information should be gathered and then properly analyzed and interpreted.
If the employees know where to go when the all-hands-on-deck alarm is called, and are familiar with what tasks are expected of them and how to perform these tasks, then the people in position to make decisions on how to properly deal with the event can do so in a calmer and more controlled manner. Although access to up-to-date data is critically important to disaster recovery, it's not the only thing that must be backed up. A hot site is a geographically remote facility that is fully equipped and ready to power up at a moments notice. If a program is built for a particular version of an operating system, it will not run if the wrong version of the operating system is installed at the offsite facility. There are different reasons why the current employees may not be available after a disaster, including death, injury, or family responsibilities. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. EM can save lives, preserve the environment and protect property by raising the understanding of risks and by contributing to a safer, more prosperous and resilient Canada. It does not lay out the requirements for preparing related EM protocols, processes, and standard operating procedures (SOP) internal to the institution; however, these should be developed in support of the SEMP and related plans.
As outlined in the Preface, many federal government institutions already have specific plans or processes to deal with aspects of emergency management; many also have a long track record of preparing and refining BCPs, which endeavour to ensure the continued availability of critical services.
Each season has its own wheel quadrant describing the activities usually undertaken in each month of the year.
Planning can be triggered by the EM planning cycle or it can be initiated in preparation for, or in response to, an event that is induced either by nature or by human actions. Consideration should be given to having representation from several program and corporate areas, including (if applicable) regional representation. Those federal government institutions that have mandated emergency support functions (ESFs) under the FERP should have these clearly identified. Notwithstanding the blueprint provided, this step is not proposed as a linear process, but rather as a set of related components and activities that can be undertaken in the sequence that best suits the institution.
Scanning can be done on a regularly scheduled basis, such as annually, or on a continuous basis for environmental factors that are dynamic or that are of greatest interest to the institution. The following diagram illustrates the external and internal environmental factors to consider. This process will add the extra assurance that your institution is linked in with partner agencies and others to assist in developing the broader environmental picture and in identifying EM-related interdependencies.
Each institution has its own strategic and operational objectives, with each being exposed to its own unique risks, and each having its own information and resource limitations.
An all-hazards approach to risk management does not necessarily mean that all hazards will be assessed, evaluated and treated, but rather that all hazards will be considered. The aim is to generate a comprehensive list of risks based on those events that might prevent, degrade or delay the achievement of objectives.
Risks should be realistic, based on drivers that exist in the institution's operating environment.
It can be a useful tool for managing and addressing risks, as well as facilitating risk communication to stakeholders. Descriptive scales can be formed or adjusted to suit the circumstances, and different descriptions can be used for different risks. Risk evaluation is the process of comparing the results of the risk analysis against risk criteria to determine whether the level of risk is acceptable or intolerable. The one most commonly used is the risk matrix (Figure 4), which normally plots the likelihood and impact on the x- and y-axes (the measured components of risks). Similarly, certain assumptions will be made that influence the development of the SEMP building blocks. Although planning considerations will vary from institution to institution, the following identifies the most common planning considerations associated with the four pillars of EM planning. Geographical Information Systems (GIS) have not been included here since they are too numerous for the purpose.
It also facilitates post-disaster recovery and reconstruction by providing a baseline against which plans can be developed.
ERA determines the potential impact of an action on ecosystems, habitats and other ecological resources, and on human health and well being. It calls for the instituting of a risk management plan that is periodically reviewed, and the results and decision properly consulted and communicated to all key stakeholders.
Monitoring also enables future predictions to be made more accurately and provides baseline information for future plans. It's estimated that less than 5% of companies are truly prepared to endure and survive a disaster. Business continuity deals with keeping a company and business after a disaster has been experienced and takes a lot more into account than just technology. Almost every type of business interruption causes some direct or indirect affect on the productivity of a company, thus its revenue stream. A less expensive alternative would be a warm site, which includes the needed communications components but does not have computers installed. If data is formatted to a particular version of a spreadsheet program, and that version is not also updated to the backup facility, it's possible that the necessary data will not be available in the time of need.
The business continuity committee must identify the necessary skill set for each critical task and come up with back up solutions as in using temp agencies or cross training individuals. These can range from troubleshooting the plan by simply walking through the documents detailing the sequence of events, to actually rehearsing the plan up to the point of actual data or resource recovery at the main site. EM planning, in particular, aims to strengthen resiliency by promoting an integrated and comprehensive approach that includes the four pillars of EM: prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. In addition, there are other existing EM planning documents and initiatives that apply to a range of federal government institutions, such as the Federal Emergency Response Plan (FERP) and deliverables under the National Strategy for Critical Infrastructure. This is also an ideal time to develop an initial budget for such items as training, exercises, research, workshops and other expenses that may be necessary during the development and implementation of the SEMP. Stakeholders may include First Nations, emergency first responders, the private sector (both business and industry), and volunteer and non-government organizations. This part of the process consists of three main activities: risk identification, risk analysis and risk evaluation. It involves the identification of risk sources, areas of impact, events and their causes, as well as potential consequences.
A risk portfolio or profile can be created from the register, helping to compile common risks in order to assess interdependencies and to prioritize groups of risks. Existing controls, the cost of further risk treatment and any policy requirement implications are considered when deciding on additional mitigation measures.
Based on a risk diagram or rating matrix, a clustering of risks can be shown, leading to decisions on priorities. The aim is to develop a SEMP that integrates and coordinates elements identified in hazard-specific plans and BCPs.
For example, an assumption might be made that the resources required to develop the SEMP will be paid out of the current fiscal year's budget.
The process is continuous because an EMS is a process of continual improvement where it is constantly reviewed and revised. More and more companies are developing business continuity into their environment because of the raised awareness of tragic possibilities, but also because of new regulatory requirements that infer executive management obligations for fiscal responsibility.
It's prudent to identify the large and small issues that can negatively affect a company and identify backup alternatives before experiencing them. The business case can include current vulnerabilities, regulatory and legal obligations, current status of recovery plans and recommendations. You would need to replace all computer resources, networking -- maybe even people -- as well as find a new site to get your business running again. Less expensive still, is a cold site, which provides only the basic environment that can be outfitted with communication components and computers, though this may take from one to several weeks. A CISSP candidate must know the difference between, checklist, structured walk-through, simulation, parallel and full-interrupt tests. Institutions may choose to assess a portfolio of risks, as opposed to specific individual risks, which enables a holistic review of risk treatment decisions.
Information can be gleaned from historical data, theoretical analyses, and informed and expert judgements.
Qualitative analysis is often simpler, but also results in high uncertainty in the results. Such a plot can help establish acceptable or intolerable risk levels, and establish their respective actions. This information can be gathered through standard survey tools or questionnaires given to the most knowledgeable people within the company.
Companies unable to support the ongoing service fees required for these options sometimes make arrangements with compatible companies who will host each other's employees and business functions in the event of a disaster. The decision of how a company should plan to recover is purely a business decision and should be treated as such. How to choose a backup facility site is covered in this section, and different approaches to data backup are detailed. This is by far the least expensive, but is also the most risky since few companies maintain the extra capacity and equipment that would be suitable to host another company's business processes.




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