Massive changes to Conservation Authorities mean development could be allowed closer to rivers, wetlands and forests, threatening contamination of our lakes and rivers, more floods, and reduced wildlife habitat.
What we do on the land impacts water. Conservation Authorities are there to ensure that planners and developers use the land responsibly to manage the risks of flooding, and the contamination of our lakes and rivers. But now through Bill 108 – the More Homes, More Choice Act 2019 – the Ontario government is proposing massive changes to how these authorities are run, and to the programs they deliver. The changes would limit Conservation Authorities’ powers to protect Ontario’s watersheds, while at the same time cutting their funding for flood hazard prevention in half.
Southern Ontario has already lost most of its forests and wetlands. Further development in wetlands should be banned, natural forests should be off limits to housing developments and restoration of Great Lakes’ shorelines and native forests should be our priority. Funding to communities to implement these plans and enforce the rules should flow through Ontario’s Conservation Authorities.
For more information about the risks to Ontario’s clean water, see the links below and visit our resources page.