PFP Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Why does the CNSC have a Participant Funding Program?
Q2. When will participant funding be offered by the CNSC?
Q3. Who is eligible for funding under the CNSC’s Participant Funding Program?
Q4. What is “value-added” information?
Q5. What types of expenses can be reimbursed through the CNSC’s Participant Funding Program?
Q6. Where do PFP funds come from?
Q7. How much funding could be available for one project annually?
Q8. Who makes the funding decisions?
Q9. What is expected from PFP Recipients?
Q10. How do I apply for participant funding?
A1. The CNSC values public and Aboriginal input into its regulatory processes. The Participant Funding Program aims to further enhance the avenues available for public input into matters that are addressed through the Commission Tribunal’s public hearing process.
Members of the public and past CNSC intervenors have often requested that funding be made available to them for the provision of valuable information to the Commission Tribunal. The establishment of the CNSC’s Participant Funding Program demonstrates our continued commitment to meaningful participation in nuclear review processes.
A2. Participant funding will be available, on a case-by-case basis, for matters related to aspects of environmental assessments (EA) and/or a licensing action for major nuclear facilities (e.g., uranium mines, nuclear power plants and nuclear waste facilities). Funding may also be available for CNSC proceedings that are of significant interest to the public or to Aboriginal Peoples.
The CNSC will determine whether to offer participant funding as well as the maximum amount for a specific matter.
A3. Eligible applicants to the CNSC’s PFP include individuals, Aboriginal groups, community members, not-for-profit corporations and other stakeholders who can demonstrate that they have:
- a direct, local interest in the project, such as living or owning property near the project area
- Aboriginal traditional knowledge and/or local community insight relevant to the proposed project
- interest in potential project impacts on treaty lands, settlement lands or traditional territories and/or related claims and rights
- plans to provide value-added* information relevant to the mandate of the CNSC and to the specific matter before the Commission Tribunal
A4. Value-added information is new, distinctive and relevant information that improves understanding of the anticipated effects of a project.
When applying to the PFP, the Applicant must explain how their proposal (activities and deliverables) will bring value-added information to the CNSC.
A5. Participant funding covers only some costs incurred by an eligible stakeholder related to professional fees, travel and other expenditures.
- Professional fees relate to the costs of hiring a professional – such as an engineer, biologist or translator – to help understand the issue or to research the project under consideration (e.g., how deep geologic storage of nuclear waste is handled in other countries).
- Travel expenses may include travel to a meeting or a CNSC hearing from your community, if necessary. In some cases, travel costs may only be considered to facilitate attendance at the nearest videoconferencing centre.
- Other costs could include photocopying, meeting room rentals or meeting supplies.
A6. PFP funds were authorized through the Jobs and Economic Growth Act 2010. Program funding for the CNSC was set at a maximum of
$1.1 million per fiscal year until 2014–15. At the end of the fiscal year, any unspent funding is returned to the government and the difference is cost-recovered from
A7. Generally, the maximum amount of funding for a single matter is $250,000 per year.
Funding levels will be determined by the CNSC on a case-by-case basis, and depends on the project’s potential direct impacts and on public interest, along with a number of other factors:
- potential effects of the project
- project size and location
- Aboriginal groups in the area
- diversity of issues likely to be raised in the hearing
- technical complexity of the project
- participant funding levels that may have been established for similar projects in the past
- available resources
Participant funding is modest and is not intended to cover all costs of participant engagement. As such, no Applicant is likely to receive the entire amount available for
each matter. Available funding will be distributed amongst successful Applicants based on the merit of their proposals.
A8. An independent Funding Review Committee (FRC) composed of three highly respected experts in fields relevant to the matter (environmental science, engineering, etc) will be selected from a roster to review Funding Applications. The CSNC’s participant funding decisions are independent of industry influence and do not involve active members of the CNSC’s Commission Tribunal.
Applicants will be notified of the Funding Review Committee’s decision concerning their request. Participant funding decisions at CNSC are final.
A9. PFP Funding Recipients must agree to and abide by all terms and conditions of the Program, including the terms of their Contribution Agreement. The CNSC will only release funds to an approved PFP Recipient upon receipt of a signed Contribution Agreement, the Final Financial Report and the agreed-upon deliverable(s).
Upon the Recipient’s request and discussion with the PFP Administrator, an advance payment may be issued to the Recipient in some circumstances.
However, an advance payment can only be issued after funding has been approved and once the CNSC has received a signed Contribution Agreement from the Recipient.
A10. The Funding Opportunities section of this Web site will tell you if funding is available for a project. If an
opportunity interests you, complete the Application Form (PDF)
and follow the PFP Guide (PDF) for more information. If your application is
approved for funding, you will receive a Contribution Agreement (PDF).
For more information on the PFP, visit How PFP Works or contact us at:
Participant Funding Program Administrator
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
280 Slater Street
P.O. Box 1046, Station B
Ottawa, ON K1P 5S9
Phone: 613-943-7431 or 1-800-668-5284 (toll-free)
Fax: 613-995-5086 (update phone number upon program implementation)