Ministry of Environment


Roles and Responsibilities in Terrain Mapping Projects

Responsible Party:

      Roles and Responsibilities:


Qualified Registered (Terrain/Bioterrain Mapping) Professional


  • Follow standards of practice (SOP).
  • Conduct terrain mapping following appropriate standards and guidelines
  • Ensure correct mapping procedures and Best Management Practices have been followed
  • If acting as a project manager, at project initiation, request a BAPID (as per Digital Terrain Data Capture Standards), otherwise, ensure that this has been done.
  • Provide all deliverables in accordance with contract specifications and RISC and other applicable standards (keep current with RISC standards).
  • Provide edit/quality control (QC) of final deliverables (verify hardcopy maps, database, report and spatial files).
  • Sign and seal the final deliverables.
  • Develop and follow internal QC procedure; use external QA/QC as appropriate.
  • Adhere to professional’s association Code of Ethics and Act.
  • Maintain up-to-date registration and good standing with an appropriate professional organization (e.g., APEGBC, BCIA).
  • Continue professional development in the area of terrain mapping.

Contract Managers/Client/Licensee


  • Ensure contract standards and specifications are up-to-date and that all relevant RISC or other applicable standards have been clearly specified in the contract.
  • If acting as project manager, at project initiation request a BAPID (as per Digital Terrain Data Capture Standards) or verify that this has been done by the Terrain mapper or other project manager.
  • Ensure all deliverables meet contract and specified standards.
  • Ensure all deliverables are delivered upon project completion date to the Terrain Data Custodian (contact (applicable to all government funded projects, (including FIA) and projects required for environmental assessment or to meet other regulatory or legislated requirements).
  • Ensure that the terrain mapping team has the appropriate qualifications and skills.
  • Ensure deliverables have been signed and sealed by the appropriate professional
  • Provide for third party Quality Assurance (QA) if the client does not have the resources in-house to ensure that the deliverables are to standard.
  • Document any proposed variances from RISC standards and obtain the Terrain Data Custodian’s approval.
  • For FIA funded project, ensure all FIA-related  requirements are met.

GIS Specialist/Analyst/Technician


  • Ensure all RISC or other applicable digital data capture standards are met.
  • Ensure terrain feature codes and source feature codes are preserved in the final deliverables.
  • Ensure dotted/dashed/solid lines are captured (through use of appropriate fcodes)
  • Provide metadata and other documentation as appropriate.
  • Manage digital terrain data.
  • If upgrading an existing dataset, follow procedures set out the digital data capture standards, or contact the Terrain Data Custodian (at for more information.
  • Consult a terrain professional as required.

Professional Associations

  • Maintain standards of practice (SOP).
  • Maintain a current list of members-in-good-standing.
  • Discipline members found in breach of the Code of Ethics or who do not adhere to the professional association’s Act.
  • Discipline individuals practicing geoscience without a licence.

Professional Forester Certifying the Forest Stewardship Plan (FSP)


  • Ensure that qualified registered professionals are hired to complete the terrain information portion of the FSP.
  • Ensure that terrain deliverables are signed and sealed by a qualified registered professional.
  • Ensure that the qualified registered professional used is registered and in good standing with an appropriate professional association.
  • Ensure that terrain information is incorporated into the FSP.

Registered Professional Biologist Signing-Off Ecosystem Mapping


  • Ensure that the project terrain specialist is a qualified registered professional in good standing.
  • Ensure that a sign off letter from the terrain professional is included with the project.
  • If the bioterrain dataset is a separate project from the ecosystem dataset (for example a bioterrain map that is an input to a PEM), the Digital Terrain Data Capture Standards may be followed).

Data Users

  • Ensure that you understand the usefulness and limitations of the data, prior to using it, to ensure it is suitable for your purpose(s).  Refer to the project report, if applicable.
  • Recognize that terrain data provided via web sites, ftp sites or by other means, are owned by the Province of BC and subject to copyright law.  This data is made available on an "as is" basis and the Province makes no guarantees to the effectiveness, completeness, accuracy or fitness for a particular purpose.

Terrain Data Custodians (at Ministry of Environment)

  • Maintain the terrain mapping and digital data capture standards.
  • Maintain a website.
  • Collect, compile and maintain terrain data in a central repository or repositories, and provide access to this information, as appropriate (recognizing some data may be proprietary).
  • Provide expert advice to clients, partners and stakeholders.
  • Clarify and approve variances from RISC standards.
  • Provide client-focused products and services.
  • Develop and manage the Terrain Information Program with input from the Terrain Working Group and in consultation with the broader terrain community, as applicable.