The Guide can support small cities, towns and rural settlements with the integration of green infrastructure into their communities. Much of the current green infrastructure research and guidance focuses on densely populated urban centres. Smaller and rural settlements are often overlooked despite the many benefits that green infrastructure can provide in these settings.
This Guide aims to fill that gap by providing an overview of the types of green infrastructure that make the most sense for these communities and by outlining a strategic zoning approach for implementation.Read more
The Toronto Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) recently conducted a consultation on a ‘Draft Protocol for Loss of Ecosystem Services’. The protocol sets out a framework for how to evaluate the ecosystem services lost because of development in natural features and appropriate compensation (in the form of replicating natural features in other locations or enhancing existing features) for those losses. The protocol triggers as a last resort when all other options to avoid and mitigate losses are exhausted. It will not apply in the Greenbelt’s protected natural features. It will apply in lands adjoining the Greenbelt and could potentially affect its natural features, and therefore it is relevant to our work.
You can read our response to the consultation here.
A new report, Ontario’s Good Fortune: Appreciating the Greenbelt’s Natural Capital from Green Analytics and Sustainable Prosperity finds that in addition to storing over $11.17B of carbon, the Greenbelt provides $3.2B annually in ecosystem services to the region. The report, commissioned by the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, assessed the value of final services provided by the Greenbelt that Ontario residents benefit from.Read more
The Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation completed a study to understand the process by which natural heritage features (NHF) are mapped and communicated to the public by municipalities in Ontario. This was in response to issues raised by Greenbelt stakeholders, mainly within the agricultural sector, who are affected by inaccuracies in Official Plan mapping schedules for natural heritage features.Read more
In September 2012, the Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association initiated a project to develop a Community Conservation and Stewardship Plan for the Bruce Peninsula through funding from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation. This project has brought together the vast local knowledge and expertise of the community to better understand the Bruce Peninsula’s biodiversity and the critical environmental issues it faces. It has provided a forum for community dialogue and learning, leading to a strategic, place-based action plan to protect, restore and benefit from the region's biodiversity. The full version of the plan is not yet released.
Please visit bpba.ca for updates and full report.
The Cootes to Escarpment Park System Conservation and Land Management Strategy report summarizes the recommendations from our consultations with stakeholders, the general public and specialists working for conservation land owning agencies about how the park system could be organized. It was made available in draft form for consultation and comment by the public at our Open House in February, 2009 (see below), and our Stakeholder Advisory Committee meeting in April, 2009. Editorial work and layout was completed and the final version of the report released in November 2009 as Cootes to Escarpment Park System Conservation and Land Management Strategy, which is often referred to as the Phase II report.
For more information, please visit cootestoescarpmentpark.ca.
Natural heritage systems planning is about maintaining, restoring and enhancing ecologically sustainable and resilient landscapes. It is a strategic approach to addressing biodiversity loss, land use change and the uncertainties of climate change so that we always have clean air, clean water and a rich diversity of plant and animal life to sustain present and future generations. Natural heritage systems planning seeks to engage communities and educate citizens about the many benefits that nature provides and about nature's fundamental place in supporting social and economic health.
The purpose of this study is to estimate the economic value of the ecosystem services and benefits provided by various types of ecosystem and land uses found within the region.Read more
This report is the sixth in a series in a series that studies natural capital and ecosystem services in Canada's major urban centres. It highlights the important role that the Ontario Greenbelt's forests, wetlands, and agricultural soils play in capturing and storing vast amounts of carbon. A principle goal of the report is to bring the importance of the Greenbelt as an instrument of climate change mitigation into relief by translating these essential ecosystem services into economic values. The report also examines a number of threats to the long-term ability of the Greenbelt to serve this climate regulation function and argues that Ontario's climate change policy framework should be revised to strengthen its ability to protect essential functions and even enhance the Greenbelt's natural capacities as a carbon sink.