From “Day Zero” in Cape Town, South Africa to Jordan and Israel’s depleted reservoirs to droughts in the Prairies it seems like water and access to water is being discussed more often and with more urgency than ever before. It makes sense though, as water is vital to maintaining life, and without it there wouldn’t be any life to begin with.
Ontario’s Greenbelt seems made for the theme of this year’s World Environment Day, ‘Connecting People to Nature.’ The Greenbelt permanently protects nearly 2 million acres of land stretching from Niagara to Northumberland and north to Tobermory. It encircles Canada’s most populous region, providing fresh food, water, and opportunities for active, local recreation. Half of the Greenbelt is some of Canada’s best agricultural land, and the rest boasts natural features including the Niagara Escarpment UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
In celebration of Earth Day in Ontario's Greenbelt, the April 22 edition of the Toronto Star features protecting farmland, growing smartly, and growing our Greenbelt to protect water. Plus, learn about the value and significant benefits of the Greenbelt's natural capital. If you missed the print edition, catch up on your weekend reading with this two-page feature.
By: Debbe Crandall, Save the Oak Ridges Moraine (STORM)
Fifteen years ago this Saturday, April 22—Earth Day—I climbed to the top of Mount Wolfe, one of the high points of the Oak Ridges Moraine, which happens to be my back yard. I remember standing there, dancing a victory jig and shaking my fist in the direction of Toronto and Brampton and the sprawl which, for the time being, had been stopped—at least for the lands in the Oak Ridges Moraine.
Photo courtesy of Pete PatersonRead more
By: Felix Whitton
Today is World Water Day, when we recognize the importance of clean water supplies in our communities and across the world.
The Greenbelt protects nearly 8,600 hectares of water and over 100,000 hectares of wetlands, including the Oak Ridges Moraine—the 'rain barrel' of Ontario—and the headwaters of 65 rivers and streams that supply clean water to millions of residents.
Photo by Jean Simard
However, the Greenbelt could stretch even further and protect at-risk areas beyond its boundaries. That is what a coalition of more than 120 community groups is calling for with the #GrowOurGB campaign.
In celebration of World Water Day, here are three reasons why we need to grow our Greenbelt!Read more
After receiving over 800 eligible photographs celebrating water in Ontario's Greenbelt, we narrowed the entries down to 123 finalists—check them out in our gallery!
During the first week of February, over 2000 Greenbelt supporters and friends cast votes for a Peoples' Choice winner.
We are pleased to announce Peter Dusek as the winner of the Peoples' Choice Award—Congratulations!
Mr. Dusek's photo, entitled "Island Lake Dusk," garnered 668 votes.
"I took this photograph of Daisy, my faithful companion, one still autumn evening at the Island Lake Conservation Area in Orangeville, with a view west across the dock of the Island Lake Rowing Club. While she loves to swim in the lake, that night she was just enjoying the sights, sounds, and scents of dusk settling in over the water — a quiet moment of "just being”. The final echo of the sunset remains over the horizon to the right, its light being replaced by the glow of Orangeville lights and their reflection in the water. As a landscape photographer, I had my tripod set up, not planning to have Daisy in the scene, but she came just at the right moment and stood perfectly still as I was testing my exposures, resulting in this beautiful photograph." — Peter Dusek
The Peoples' Choice Winner will be exhibited among 20 photographs selected by a jury composed of staff from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, and the Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC).
The first exhibit will take place at McMichael from March 1 to June 30, 2017. From there, the photos will hit the road to travel the Greenbelt for the summer. Stay tuned!
Since October, Greenbelt friends, supporters and residents from across Ontario have submitted over 800 entries to our 2016-17 Photo Contest!
The contest closed on Tuesday, January 10, and we are already enjoying the entries and selecting finalists. On February 1, the finalists will be added to our website and Facebook page, where you will have the opportunity to vote for the Peoples’ Choice Winner. Stay tuned! In the meantime, check out this year’s entries in our gallery.
Photo of Albion Falls by Robert CasementRead more
On Wednesday, November 2, 2016, St. Catharines MPP Jim Bradley spoke in the Ontario legislature to support growing the Greenbelt to protect more sensitive and vital water resources. Thank you, Mr. Bradley!
Throughout October, as the deadline for the Co-ordinated Land Use Planning Review approached, local organizations galvanized support for Growing Our Greenbelt. Here is a round-up of recent events by partners, friends, and relevant organizations. Thank you for your continued support and research!Read more
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 19, 2016
Thousands of Residents Tell Government to Grow Our Greenbelt and Protect More of Ontario's Water
#GrowOurGB campaign builds momentum as residents call on Province to protect a "bluebelt" of vital water resources
On October 19, over 500 Ontario residents took to social media to send a coordinated Thunderclap to share their support to grow the Greenbelt, hoping that Minister of Municipal Affairs Bill Mauro and Premier Kathleen Wynne will take note. The #GrowOurGB campaign is asking the Province to take the next step in protecting our vital water resources to include Simcoe, Wellington, Waterloo, Brant, and Northumberland counties in the Greenbelt.Read more