On any given day, Ontarians can look up the Air Quality Health Index and find out what
health risks they face just by breathing.
When Ontario closed its coal fire plants, it made a huge difference to the quality of air and had
a significant impact on reducing Greenhouse gas emissions as
But there is more to be done.
While we have been zoning lands to manage land use in an orderly
and responsible way for decades, more recently we have started
talking about zoning air sheds, a place-based approach to manage
local air quality and pollution.
In 2012, the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment
agreed to implement a new Air Quality Management System. Each of the
provinces and territories will play a role in establishing
"Air Zones" which will be within six "Airsheds"
The Federal government will provide technical support of air
quality monitoring for the Zones on federal and Aboriginal lands,
and for federal facilities on federal and Aboriginal lands. It will
also assist Territorial governments to manage air quality in
Nunavut and the Northwest Territories.
Ontario has now released its proposal for three Air Zones.
Air Zone 1 – Areas with limited
pollution from either point or non-point sources or transboundary
influence; where air quality management activities are focused on
maintaining good air quality. (Most of Northern Ontario)
Air Zone 2 – Areas under
pressure from multiple sources including some or all of the
following: non-point sources, smaller point sources, individual
large industrial point sources, transboundary influences; where air
quality management activities are focused on multiple broad-based
initiatives targeting many sources. (The majority of Southern
Ontario, Sault. Ste. Marie and the City of Greater Sudbury)
Air Zone 3 – Areas with a
concentration of large industrial sources; where air quality
management activities are focused on the abatement of local
industrial emissions as well as non-industrial sources. (City of
Hamilton, Sarnia-Area (including the city of Sarnia and Township of
The Imperial Oil refinery pled guilty to one offence for discharging a contaminant, coker stabilizer, thermocracked gas, into the natural environment causing an adverse effect and was fined $650,000...
Ontario's Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change continues to roll out its Climate Change Action Plan with its proposed GHG guide for projects that are subject to the province's Environmental Assessment Act.
In June, 2016, Justice Faieta of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice awarded damages of $57,712.31 plus interest against legal counsel who failed to file a claim within the required limitation period.
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