Bill 71, Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act, 2019

Mike Schreiner: “It’s time we started taking seriously our sacred responsibility to leave a livable planet for our children and grandchildren.”

On Wednesday February 20th, 2019, Mike Schreiner made history again when he introduced his first Private Member’s Bill in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.

You can read Bill 71, Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act, 2019 online
(
An Act to conserve the Paris Galt Moraine by providing for the Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Plan)

In the face of climate change, resource extraction and sprawl, Mike’s draft legislation seeks to protect the Paris Galt Moraine, an essential water ecologically sensitive recharge area in the Grand River Watershed which naturally purifies water for the citizens of Guelph and the surrounding area.  Bill 71  would amend the province’s Planning Act and Development Charges Act  to more strictly regulate development that could jeopardize the moraine’s integrity.

This is about conserving what nature can do for free, so I cannot think of a more fiscally responsible solution. Failure to act could put the government on the hook for hundreds of millions in water infrastructure, like an expensive pipeline from the Great Lakes.
—Mike Schreiner.

Mike wrote the draft legislation over a period of months where he consulted with water experts and Ontario stakeholders, including First Nations, municipalities, farmers and MPPs from all parties.

With this important legislation, Mike has demonstrated the Green Party’s core commitment to participatory democracy and consensus based governance by building all-party support, which resulted in the bill’s passage at Second Reading on March 7th, 2019. “I’m glad my colleagues unanimously showed their commitment to Ontario’s water today. Safeguarding water and food-growing farmland should not be partisan issues. Let this be a first step towards all-party collaboration to protect the places we love,” said Schreiner.

First Green Bill gets all-party support! Let this be the first step of all-party collaboration to protect Ontario's water for our children and grandchildren." - Mike Schreiner, MPP, Green party of Ontario

I appealed to good progressive conservative thinking from the past. But it took four different bills over two years before the Oak Ridges Moraine was protected by legislation. With climate change on Ontario’s doorstep, and $1.2 billion in damage last year alone, we must act quicker. I look forward to working on this bill at committee, and this legislation returning to the House for a final vote.
Mike Schreiner, First Green legislation passes key vote with all-party support

 

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Screening & Panel Discussion: “Just Eat It”

This is not a Green Party event, but will be interesting for anyone concerned about a sustainable future.

Nith Valley Ecoboosters are pleased to present an event the amount of food wasted each year in Canada.

Wednesday, March 20th, 2019
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
at Zion United Church, 215 Peel St., New Hamburg (Map)

View the film “Just Eat It – A food waste story” and hear from 3 expert panelists who will share their thoughts on this issue.

THE PANEL

  • Dr. Alison Blay-Palmer, the director of the Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at Wilfrid Laurier University;
  • Dr. Mike von Massow, the OAC Chair in Food System Leadership at University of Guelph;
  • Jennifer Pfenning, Director of Human Resources and Marketing, Pfenning’s Organic Farms, New Hamburg.

Following the panel discussion, there will be an opportunity for the audience to ask questions.

This event is free but registration is required:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/just-eat-it-film-screening-and-panel-discussion-tickets-53254237859

For more information, email nvecoboosters@gmailcom

Mike Makes History (Again!)

Today was special.

I tabled the first ever Green legislation in Ontario history, a bill to protect the drinking water supply of nearly 200,000 people in the Guelph region.

And I did it with dozens of water defenders at my side.

It’s time we started taking seriously our sacred responsibility to leave a liveable planet for our children and grandchildren. The Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act would protect our water from contamination, urban sprawl and reckless resource extraction.

And while the Premier has been threatening to poke holes in the Greenbelt, this legislation would grow the Greenbelt, conserving more farmland and wildlife habitat.

We face an uphill battle. Majority governments don’t pass many opposition bills. So I need your help to write to your MPP and sign my petition urging the government to #ProtectOurWater.

Go to ProtectOurWater.ca today and help us make history again!

Mike

Tell your MPP you support the Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act!
Use the GPO’s handy letter writing tool at ProtectOurWater.ca to find your MPP and send them an email.

Our Water Our Future

This is not a Green Party event, but will be interesting for anyone concerned about water protection and the environment. WRGreens will have an information table at this event!

Our Water | Our Future | no Bill 66 Doug Ford’s government for the developers has introduced a new disturbing piece of legislation. Bill 66 would allow developers to bypass important environmental protections and land use controls established under other provincial laws, plans and policies, such as the Clean Water Act and the Greenbelt Act, that protect our environment and our health.

The Canadian Environmental Law Association has said that Bill 66 together with other recent “laws to eliminate or dilute important environmental statutes, regulations and programs … constitutes the biggest and most significant environmental rollback to occur in a generation in Ontario.”

Join us to learn more about the implications of Bill 66 for our water and for our future.

What: Our Water Our Future
When: Thursday, 7 February 2019 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Where: First United Church
Location:16 William St W, Waterloo, ON N2L 1J3 Map

Please REGISTER — admission is free

While we appear to have made important progress on turning back one of the most egregious components of Bill 66, there remain significant problems in this bill, including Schedule 5 repealing the Toxics Reduction Act. Major concerns remain that the Ford ‘government for the developers’ may reduce the support for monitoring and enforcement of legislation that protects our water, land and air quality.

Join us on February 7th at First United Church in Waterloo at 7pm to celebrate our progress on Bill 66 and to engage with experts as they explain other current dangerous proposals and corresponding calls for action.

We have two powerful keynote speakers: Theresa McClenaghan, Executive Director of the Canadian Environmental Law Association, former water policy advisor for Ministry of the Environment, and legal representative for citizens in the Walkerton Inquiry; and Bruce Davidson, Co-founder and Vice-Chair of Concerned Walkerton Citizens.

There will be lots of time to have your questions answered, as well as presentations from Susan Bryant of APT Environment on Elmira’s ongoing water contamination; Kevin Thomason of Grand River Environmental Network on countryside protection; and Arlene Slocombe of Waterloo Wellington Water Watchers on source water protection.

Refreshments will be served; please bring along your travel mug or water bottle.

This event is being organized by the following community partners:

Catch a Green Wave

white text over a green wave: Waterloo Region's Green Wave Starts Here: 2018 Candidate preNomination Social, Thursday, January 31st, 7:00–9:00pm at Fresh Ground 256 King St E, Kitchener, ON N2G 2L1, Canada

Excitement in the Green community is at an all time high: the Green movement is growing.  You may already be part of it without even realizing it!  Every conversation you have about our communities, economies, and environment builds the impetus toward change. We’re seeing an appetite for a green future beyond anything we’ve seen in past elections… and this one hasn’t even begun!

WRGreens are growing a people-powered movement in Waterloo Region to elect our first Green MPs!

You’re invited to our 2019 WRGreens Candidate preNomination Social
Thursday, January 31st
7:00 – 9:00pm
at Fresh Ground ~ 256 King St E, Kitchener

People from all parties and backgrounds are invited to come find out how we will make the community, economy, and environment our priority.

WRGreens believe our only credible path toward a healthy and robust future for our region and our country is decisive action: we need to start electing Green MPs.  We have all the tools and solutions. All we need do is choose to act together.  Be part of the solution by joining the first wave of this movement as we build toward the October election!

Come meet Waterloo Region’s Green Party candidate nominees

So far we have half a dozen declared candidate nominees for Kitchener Centre, and we may have contested nominations in all 5 ridings!  This is your chance to find out what our potential Waterloo Region Greens candidates are working for, and why they’ve committed to running under the Green banner in 2019!  If you are interested in throwing your hat in the ring (or know someone else who might be) for the riding of

contact WRGreens Nominations Chair Kris Braun at kris.braun@greenparty.ca

Our first combined nomination meeting will take place on March 6th, when GPC members of the Kitchener Centre and Waterloo EDAs will choose their candidates.  Then In April, we’ll host the combined meeting for Kitchener South–Hespeler, Kitchener–Conestoga, and Cambridge candidates.

If you’re not a member yet, before you can vote for the next Green Party Candidate in your riding, you’ll need to join the party.  You can purchase your $10 membership online before the preNomination Social, or you can wait and do it at the event.

Whether you’re a GPC member or a friend, this will be a great opportunity to grab a coffee, listen to music, and get to know each other.  Families are welcome.

Facebook Event Page:
https://www.facebook.com/events/382995449117240/

RSVPs are appreciated so we can be sure to accommodate everyone who wishes to attend.  Sign up for this free event on the
Eventbright Page: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/waterloo-region-greens-pre-nomination-kickoff-tickets-54805419485


coming soon:

Joint Nomination Meeting for the Kitchener Centre and Waterloo Electoral District Associations

  • What: WRGreens Regular Meeting and Joint Nomination Meeting
  • When:  Wednesday, March 6th, 2019
  • Where: To Be Determined
    • Cutoff for new memberships would be Monday, February 4th,  2019

Joint Nomination Meeting for Kitchener South–Hespeler, Kitchener–Conestoga, and Cambridge Electoral District Associations

  • What: WRGreens Regular Meeting and Joint Nomination Meeting
  • When:  First week of April
  • Where: To Be Determined
    • Cutoff for new memberships will be in March, 30 days before the nomination contest.

WR Greens all logos

#Bill66 — @BobJonkmanGPC’s submission to the Environmental Registry of Ontario

Stop Bill 66 | They say it's red tape | To us it's precious farmland Bill 66 was introduced in the Ontario legislature just before the Christmas holidays. The short timeframe for discussion and consultation makes me think the legislators are trying to pass it before people have a chance to understand its effects. It is an omnibus bill, affecting dozens of different pieces of Ontario laws and regulations, many items of which are hidden behind indirect references, and all of which are to be voted on en masse. Omnibus bills tend to carry deleterious clauses which would never stand on their own, but which get passed only because of some other items in the same bill that are perceived to be more beneficial than the rest of the bill is bad.

A summary of Bill 66 is at the Legislative Assembly of Ontario website, called Bill 66, Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act, 2018

Commentary on Bill 66 is plentiful:

Bob Jonkman Bill 66 delegation to Woolwich Township Council Committee of The Whole, Tuesday January 8th, 2019
Many groups joined together to provide information on Bill 66, and to make a concerted effort to bring our dissatisfaction to local municipal and provincial leaders. I made two delegations to Woolwich Township Council urging them to pass a resolution to reject Bill 66 and to pledge that if passed, not to use this legislation to bypass the environmental regulations currently in place. Woolwich did pass a resolution, but stopped short of adding the pledge not to use it.

The consultation period at the Ontario Environmental Registry ended yesterday, and below are the comments I made.

Bill 66 is a direct affront to the citizens of Ontario. Doug Ford made a pledge in May 2018 that the Green Belt areas would be not be subject to development. Now that Doug Ford is Premier of the Government of Ontario, I expect that pledge to be honoured.


Bill 66 affects existing laws and regulations at many Ministries, not just the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. It detrimentally affects the protections for workers in many separate regulations, detrimentally affects the protections for children in childcare, detrimentally affects seniors and patients in long-term care, and detrimentally affects consumers protections from wireless carriers. This is not an exhaustive list.


Bill 66 detrimentally affects environmental regulations more than any other. Under Schedule 10 municipalities no longer have to follow the regulations under the Clean Water Act, Great Lakes Protection Act, Greenbelt Act, Lake Simcoe Protection Act, and the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Act, among many others.


Ontario and its municipalities have experienced the greatest prosperity in the last ten years, without needing to circumvent the environmental protections put in place by previous Conservative and Liberal governments. Removing these protections now will pit one municipality against another — if one municipality allows development in a protected area, it creates pollution for all the downwind and downstream neighbours, both in that municipality as well as surrouding municipalities. There will be increased infrastructure costs for those municipalities that receive the extra traffic from the development, but none of the anticipated revenue. Bill 66 is not something municipalities have asked for for, nor is it something municipalities need.


Speculators may have purchased land in the currently protected areas. Just having Bill 66 on the table has affected land values. Currently permitted uses for protected areas will become unaffordable, and the pressure on local governments to bypass environmental protections will be great. I’m happy to see many municipalities have passed resolutions rejecting Bill 66.


The citizens of Ontario are clear: Bill 66, with all its recissions of existing laws, must not be passed. I hope the elected representatives in the Legislature will fulfill their mandate and represent their constituents’ demands to reject Bill 66.

Bill 66: What You Need to Know


This is a handy handout from Ontario Nature:

    1. It affects every municipality in Ontario. Bill 66 allows municipalities across the province to create “open-for-business by-laws” that would trump critical legal requirements to protect water, natural heritage, farmland and human health and well-being. These by-laws would take precedence over municipal official plans.

    2. It threatens drinking water across Ontario. Open-for-business by-laws would override policies in approved source protection plans intended to protect existing and future sources of municipal drinking water from threats such as landfills, sewage systems and improper handling of fuel, manure and pesticides.

    3. It threatens wetlands, woodlands and habitat for species at risk across Ontario. Open-for-business by-laws would circumvent protections for these important habitats and species set out in the Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) under the Planning Act.

    4. It threatens farmland across Ontario. Open-for-business by-laws would bypass agricultural protections set out, for example, in the PPS. This could lead to more urban sprawl.

    5. It threatens two million acres of natural areas and farmland across the Greenbelt. Open-for-business by-laws would override protections for natural heritage and farmland set out in the Greenbelt Plan and the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan.

    6. It threatens fresh water and the ecological health of the Lake Simcoe watershed. Open-for-business bylaws would trump requirements set out in the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan.

    7. It would undermine efforts to make Ontario communities more livable, sustainable and resilient. Open-for-business by-laws would override PPS policies supporting active transportation, affordable housing, green infrastructure and climate resiliency.

    8. It would compromise transparency and public engagement. Contrary to current legal requirements (Planning Act, Clean Water Act), the by-laws could be passed without any prior public notice, behind closed doors.

    9. It would leave citizens without recourse. Community members would not be able to appeal open-for-business by-laws to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal.

    10. It threatens human and wildlife health through increased exposure to toxic chemicals. Bill 66 proposes to repeal the Toxics Reduction Act, which requires certain industrial facilities to consider ways to reduce the use and emission of toxic chemicals in their operations.

With your help, we can stop Bill 66.

Sign Today:
ontarionature.good.do/schedule10
#StopBill66


Please take two minutes to send a message to the Ontario Government to stop Bill 66:

COMMENT ON Omnibus Bill 66 HERE

DEADLINE SUNDAY: January 20th, 2019