Kathleen Wynne's government has re-introduced the
proposed Great Lakes Protection Act, 2013 as
Bill 6. First introduced in June 2012, this proposal died
when the legislature was prorogued.
The Act is the result of many years of work. It would encourage
members of the Great Lakes community to collaborate to improve
water quality and protect the lakes and their shores and wetlands.
It is also intended to advance science in areas like climate
change and other stressors. An over-arching goal of the Act is to
ensure that the Great Lakes – which contain almost 20% of our
planet's fresh surface water – are "drinkable,
swimmable and fishable". It would establish a
Guardians' Council as a forum to identify priorities and
projects and share information. The Council would include
politicians, First Nations and ENGO representatives, and members of
the scientific, agriculture and business sectors.
We are encouraged that this important piece of legislation is
back on the Order Paper, and hope to see it swiftly passed. The
Great Lakes urgently need more attention and protection, and this
will be a small step in the right direction. The Act as well as
background documents and helpful links are posted on the Environmental Registry (#11-6461) for public
consultation. Comments are due by April 26
2013. The MOE also includes comprehensive
information on protecting the Great Lakes.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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