I'll raise a few that I hear regularly from stakeholders, particularly from the Species at Risk Advisory Committee and the National Aboriginal Council on Species at Risk, starting with the latter. One of the challenges you'll hear, I'm sure, concerns consultation with aboriginal peoples. Aboriginal people have rights, and many of them have land management responsibilities, and therefore species are of primary concern to them, for reasons including subsistence harvesting that my colleague, Pardeep Ahluwalia, mentioned.
There is a requirement to consult. I'm sure we could never do enough consultation. That is something we're trying to improve. We now have a memorandum of understanding with the Nunavut government to respect their land management claim responsibilities.
Consultation is a challenge with aboriginals, particularly, as you know, because they're dispersed across Canada in small communities. We're mounting our largest consultation ever on the polar bear to get out to small communities, because we know it's a species that's important to the Inuit people.
The second aspect that aboriginals will raise is subsistence harvesting and whether or not the Species at Risk Act interferes with it.
From a broader perspective, there is a large number of species—I mentioned that there's been almost a doubling of species added to the list since proclamation—for all of which we are required to go through the steps of recovery strategy and plan our management plans. Some are simple, but many of them are complex, and they all require a high degree of attention.
Critical habitat identification is a challenging one. It's challenging from a scientific perspective. The act requires that we do it in the recovery strategy as best we can. Often we're struggling, asking how much we do in the recovery strategy. Do we get the recovery strategy out and move to action plans, so that we at least get information out there in the public? That's a challenge.
A challenge you'll probably hear about from industry concerns the act's permitting, and the fact that the act presumes that government will want to stop any activity that could have any impact on species at risk. Some of that activity has been in place—hydro dams, etc.—so there are industry concerns about clarity as to whether or not the act would allow long-term activity, particularly activity that's already in place before species are identified.
Those are some of the challenges that we hear regularly.