Mission and mandate
To manage and support the development of land, energy and mineral resources in Québec, with a view to achieving sustainable development.
To fulfill its mission, the MERN relies first and foremost on the everyday commitment of its staff and their expertise. In the organization’s history, not only has scientific knowledge been an asset, but its acquisition and application have also been a necessity in ensuring coherent and responsible development of its resources.
As is often the case for Government departments, the type and extent of the MERN’s expertise may not be fully understood by some of the groups that use its services. However, the MERN looks firmly to the future with an organizational vision based not only on the leading-edge expertise of its staffl, but also on its desire to contribute to the development of Québec’s society.
Responsible economic development is at the heart of our initiatives.
The Ministère de l’Énergie et des Ressources naturelles (MERN) encourages the land, mineral and energy resource development projects that are welcomed by communities. On January 24, 2017, it unveiled five guidelines for social acceptability (PDF 4.50 Mb) (summary (PDF 666 Kb)). These guidelines are the outcome from an extensive workshop initiative launched in the fall of 2014 (in French only) which led to a diagnosis of the MERN’s practices and tools and the production of the Green Paper on Social Acceptability (PDF 554 Kb).
Social acceptability is the result of a collective judgment of a project. This judgment may change over time, and is influenced by a set of factors. The MERN, as part of its new advisory role in the area of social acceptability, encourages promoters to give more consideration to these factors.
The MERN now offers updated support services for promoters and local communities.
- Support and encourage promoters to use good practices, among other things by setting up a monitoring committee early in the project preparation process
- Inform the population about major projects, land uses and rights granted, the project authorization process and existing guides
- Review the public land use planning process to make it more transparent and participatory
- Encourage local actors to play an active role in project development (public consultations, monitoring committees)
- Produce a good practice guide to the creation and operation of a monitoring committee
For further details of the steps taken by the MERN, please see the social acceptability poster (PDF 678 Kb) presented at Québec Mines 2017 (in French only).
Social Acceptability: A Core Element of Every Major Project
See the Major projects page for information on the progression of large-scale land, energy and mineral resource development projects monitored by the MERN.
STANKEY, G. H. & B. Schindler (2006). “Formation of Social Acceptability Judgments and Their Implications for Management of Rare and Little-Known Species”, Conservation Biology, Volume 20 (no. 1), p. 28-37. VILLE DE MONTRÉAL. Comités de suivi. [http://ville.montreal.qc.ca/portal/page?_pageid=7237,142038918&_dad=portal&_schema =PORTAL] (Accessed May 9, 2018).
YELLE, V. (2013). Social perception of ecosystem management in Quebec’s black spruce forest – Can large harvests emulating fire be acceptable to forest users, stakeholders and the uninformed public?, doctoral thesis, Université Laval, Québec, Canada [http://theses.ulaval.ca/archimede/meta/29770 ].
Last update: March 25, 2019