In reviewing a land exchange application, department staff examines the private lands that would be acquired in the exchange, relative to the public lands that would
be transferred in the exchange. department staff also consults with other provincial ministries and agencies that may have interests in the matter for their advice on
the merits of the proposed exchange.
Several aspects of the private and public lands are assessed, particularly their natural resource values. This includes significant attention to the lands' environmental
values. For example, their values to watersheds, the fish and wildlife habitats they provide, and the plant and animal biodiversity they support. The department draws upon
its internal knowledge and expertise, and collects additional data as necessary, to assess these values.
In the case of complex exchanges, members of the public are asked for their views and advice on the proposed land exchange based on the merits of the exchange.
After examining the lands and consideration of management implications and risks of ownership, and considering any advice received, department staff determines whether
the proposed land exchange will provide a "net benefit" to the province. If a proposed land exchange will not provide a "net benefit" then the application is not