Backgrounder: Modernizing the Business of Defence
Canada’s defence policy – Strong, Secure, Engaged – will mark real progress toward streamlining defence procurement, improving the timely acquisition of much needed military capabilities, and increasing economic benefits and creating jobs for Canadians. It will also encourage modernized management of lands and buildings, support infrastructure renewal, and help meet greening targets for government.
Improving Defence Procurement
Effective and timely defence procurement is vital to ensuring the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) is well-equipped to deliver on important missions assigned by Government.
Military procurement can be a highly complex undertaking involving many approvals across multiple departments – including the Department of National Defence, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, and Public Services and Procurement Canada – but it doesn’t need to be in every case.
This defence policy will increase transparency and streamline Defence procurement by simplifying the process, reducing approvals, and investing in our procurement professionals. Providing our professionals with the knowledge, tools and authority to drive low complexity projects will accelerate approvals and delivery.
- Engage with the Canadian defence industry to improve their understanding of future defence procurement requirements, enabling them to plan, innovate, and offer creative and timely solutions;
- Improve accountability by providing Canadians with regular updates on major projects to increase transparency, communicate challenges, and measure performance;
- Publish the next Defence Investment Plan in 2018, which will include all major capital equipment projects covered by this policy, and refresh it every three years to ensure it continues to reflect the investment priorities of Defence. This plan provides detailed information on all major capital projects to guide the investments that provide the CAF with the core capability to carry out its mandate. It demonstrates sound stewardship of public funds and increases the transparency of how defence funding is managed and invested to deliver a modern, well-equipped, well-trained, and well-supported CAF;
- Reduce approval time within Defence by at least 50 percent for low-risk and low-complexity projects by decreasing the number of steps;
- Work with partners to increase DND’s contracting authorities for goods up to $5 million by 2018, allowing over 80 percent of defence procurement contracts to be managed by Defence;
- Grow and professionalize the Defence procurement workforce to ensure our people have the knowledge, expertise and skills to manage the acquisition and support of today’s complex military capabilities; and
- Use procurement to incentivize Canadian research and development in important and emerging technological areas.
Modernizing Defence Infrastructure
Defence manages the largest infrastructure portfolio in the federal government. With assets worth roughly $26 billion, this includes more than 20,000 buildings, 5,500 kilometers of roads, 3,000 kilometers of water works, and over 2.2 million hectares of land (almost four times the landmass of Prince Edward Island).
Infrastructure is an absolute necessity for all CAF activities – whether it be the bases and installations where the military train and prepare for their missions, the support network required to maintain and operate equipment, or housing and infrastructure needed to ensure CAF members and their families are well-supported.
Canada’s defence policy commits us to improving management practices to achieve an affordable, sustainable infrastructure portfolio.
We will work with the private sector, other levels of government and our allies to explore best practices and achieve better infrastructure management for Defence.
- Improve infrastructure on bases and wings including housing for CAF personnel. In doing so, we will explore ways to partner with the private sector and will consult with public sector unions; and
- Dispose of underutilized or obsolete buildings, making Defence more efficient, while helping us accelerate the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
We will take concrete steps to improve efficiency, preserve the environment, and support military personnel. We will analyse industry-leading best practices and look at innovative methods to enhance the delivery of infrastructure services which enable every aspect of defence, including technological innovation, improved housing and facilities for personnel, and the conduct of military operations.
Defence is one of Canada’s largest employers and maintainers of equipment and infrastructure and the single largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the Federal Government, representing more than half of the Government of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. So it is crucial that we move aggressively to improve the efficiency of our infrastructure, and work diligently towards sound, continuous caretaking of the environment. This means using less energy, moving to cleaner energy sources, reducing the impact of our infrastructure, and improving measurement and reporting results.
Canada’s defence policy supports our plan to achieve a low-carbon government. Defence is committed to meeting or exceeding the federal target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent from the 2005 levels by 2030 (excluding military fleets). This includes seeking out opportunities to purchase clean power such as in Alberta where, as of January 2017, 90 percent of electricity supplying our installations now comes from renewable sources. We are also investing in Energy Performance Contracts, which enable the department to make use of private sector innovation and capital by allowing energy service providers to identify and implement energy efficiencies and get paid back through energy savings.
We are committed to operating in ways that:
- Ensure the health and safety of CAF members and Canadians;
- Protect the environment: Defence continues to make great progress in remediating sites contaminated by past military activities, and is doing its part for the protection of species at risk on its lands; and
- Consider both energy and the environment to guide the sustainable management of operations.
We recognize the need to minimize environmental impacts of operations and activities conducted in Canada and internationally.
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent from the 2005 levels by 2030 (excluding military fleets), including the following measures:
- Invest $225 million by 2020 in a wide range of infrastructure projects across Canada to reduce our carbon footprint;
- Transition 20 percent of non-military vehicle fleets to hybrid and electric by 2020;
- Require new construction and major recapitalization projects to be green by meeting the Silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard or equivalent;
- Expand the use of Energy Performance Contracts to implement energy efficiencies on bases and wings across Canada;
- Install electric charging stations for defence fleet and for personal vehicle use at new or retrofitted defence buildings; and
- Examine alternative energy options and their potential use for operations.