Government of New Brunswick
Image of aggregate resources

Aggregate resources (quarriable substances) include sand, gravel, and ordinary, building or construction stone whether in a natural or processed state. Aggregates are an essential resource in our society and everyday lives as they are used in our home and office buildings, schools, hospitals, roads and highways, bridges as well as many other essential residential and industrial needs. Construction of houses, and buildings alone require aggregate for use in foundations, concrete blocks, brick, mortar, shingles, steel, glass, and asphalt. Additionally, thousands of jobs in the construction industry also rely on having an adequate supply of aggregate products and resources.

Aggregate resources are vested in the owner of the land in which they lie, as such, the Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development is responsible for the management of aggregate resources located on provincial Crown land. The department's mandate is to protect and optimize the use and availability of these aggregate resources in the best interest of the people of New Brunswick.

Aggregate will always be one of societies basic necessities. As our population grows, so too will our demand for aggregate. We must ensure that as one of our non-renewable natural resources, Crown land aggregate resources are well managed and continue to be available to meet a variety of needs both now and well into the future.

The Minister of the Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development, through the Quarriable Substances Act and Regulation 93-92, has the authority to manage tenure, exploration, development and production of aggregates on Crown lands, as well as any private land(s) that lie within 300 metres, seaward or shoreward, of the ordinary high water mark of the provincial coastline.

The Crown Land Quarries Policy provides details on how the resource is managed from the following perspective:

  • aggregate supply and management
  • protection of natural and social environments
  • operational and reclamation requirements
  • effective administrative and legal framework

Acquisition of Rights
No person shall operate a quarry or take or remove a quarriable substance located on Crown lands unless they are the holder of a valid quarry tenure relative to that quarry. The Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development administers three forms of tenure for quarries;

  • Written Authorization
  • Quarry Permit
  • Quarry Lease

Aggregate Inventory
The New Brunswick Granular Aggregate Inventory Program was initiated in 1974 in order to identify alternative sources for concrete sand in the Moncton area to replace traditional sources coming from provincial coastal beaches. The inventory program was then extended to the remainder of the province. The field mapping and sampling part of the program was completed in 1986. Mapping was based on the federal 1:50 000 scale National Topographic System (NTS).   

The series of Granular Aggregate Reports cover the entire land area of the Province. Individual reports covering one or more NTS maps are generally based on the following format:

  • A brief description of the bedrock and surficial geology of the study area.
  • A description of the types and general characteristics of the granular aggregate deposits present.
  • Appendices containing section descriptions, the results of mechanical grain-size and lithological analyses; and
  • Estimated recoverable reserve volumes for specific deposits.