Local Leadership Matters: Ontario Municipalities Taking Action to Strengthen the Greenbelt

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 11, 2015

COMMUNITIES LEADING THE WAY IN STRENGTHENING THE GREENBELT
Research Highlights Ways Local Governments are Helping Achieve Greenbelt’s Goals

The latest research from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation looks at a mix of initiatives and tools 30 municipalities are using to enhance Ontario’s Greenbelt.

The report, Local Leadership Matters: Ontario Municipalities Taking Action to Strengthen the Greenbelt, surveyed dozens of municipal officials. The results emphasize the many ways communities are directly and indirectly helping to achieve the objectives of the Greenbelt—enhancing valuable natural heritage sites, supporting agriculture, increasing tourism, and strengthening local economies.

"Many local governments are showing tremendous leadership in strengthening Ontario’s Greenbelt,”" says Burkhard Mausberg, CEO, Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation. "Similar to one of sports’ most dynamic duo, communities are setting the Greenbelt up for success like Gretzky’s silky-smooth assists to Jari Kurri in the 1980s and ‘90s."

Examples of municipal projects include:

  • The County of Northumberland established a 15,000 square foot local food processing and training facility to help farmers diversify and expand their businesses.

  • The Town of Aurora calculated that the total economic value of its natural assets, such as woodlands and wetlands, are worth about $7.4 million annually.

  • The Region of Peel offers funding of up to 50 per cent to assist conservation partners in securing additional natural areas for environmental and recreational purposes—with nearly 900 acres purchased since 2005.

  • The Municipality of Clarington launched the Trees for Rural Roads program to restore tree-lined rural roads by planting Maples throughout the community. Since 2012, the municipality and property owners have planted 2,300 trees.

  • An Explore the Bruce Adventure Passport, created by Bruce County, involves an annual scavenger hunt that encourages residents and cottagers to visit the scenic natural features and other tourist attractions across the County. To date, nearly 70,000 people have participated in exploring the Bruce.

  • The Town of Lincoln is becoming a Centre of Excellence for Agriculture.

Download full report here

About the Greenbelt:
Ontario’s Greenbelt is the solution for fresh air, clean water, healthy local food, recreational opportunities, and a thriving economy with good jobs. At nearly 2 million acres, it’s the world’s largest permanently protected greenbelt, keeping our farmlands, forests, and wetlands safe and sustainable. The Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation works to help keep farmers successful, strengthen local economies, and protect natural features. Join us in 2015 as we celebrate 10 years of success for the Greenbelt! Learn more at: greenbelt.ca or find us on Twitter and Facebook.

Contact:
James Berry
Communications Manager
Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation
Phone: (416) 960-0001, ext. 306
jberry@greenbelt.ca

 

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