For those wishing to make a long-form submission to the Ministry, please feel free to use the text below as a template.
You can copy and paste the text in whole, of course, or mix it up as you please.
All submissions should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
(Click map images to download.)
Ministry of Municipal Affairs
Provincial Planning Policy Branch
777 Bay Street, 13th Floor
Toronto, ON M5G 2E5
Dear Ministry staff,
Water is our most precious resource. I am pleased the government is taking this important step to protect the water systems we all depend on. I would like to offer my organization’s comments on this proposal (EBR # 013-1661).
(insert group name) is a (describe group including membership or reach, location in Simcoe County, mandate/purpose). We are commenting on this proposal to let you know that key areas have been left out of your study area map and we would like them included.
Specifically, we would like you to include in your mapping (as marked below):
- The remainder of the Lake Simcoe basin
- Highly significant recharge areas in Severn Sound and the Carden Alvar
- Highly significant recharge areas in the Waverley Uplands
- Wetlands and recharge areas in Clearview Township
The data layers included in the map above are directly from local Conservation Authorities in their Source Water Protection Plan mapping exercise. These are the areas they have clearly outlined as important to our source water.
Protecting these lands is particularly important for our community because (insert reason e.g.recharge area, aquifer, sensitive locally significant wetlands, lack of forest cover in area etc.). Overall, Simcoe County is highly reliant on groundwater and the hydrogeologic system that supports its quantity and quality. This includes our forests, wetlands, shorelines, recharge areas and arable land. Without protecting all of these sensitive lands from unnecessary development, the entire watershed and its groundwater is still at risk.
In addition, referring to the map below and comparing it to your Ministry’s study area map shows that many of the areas “left off” are highly vulnerable aquifers (marked in red). This cannot stand if the Greenbelt expansion process is intended to protect our water sources. Again, this map uses data from local Source Water Protection Plans.
As can be seen from the included maps, the areas “left out” of the study area map contain many of the vulnerable and important water resources that were intended to be protected. However, Ministry criteria removed these lands from the study area map if they were not under threat of urbanization. Yet those features’ relative importance to the overall water system has not diminished. While admittedly urbanization is a major threat, it is not the only one. Climate change poses a unique challenge and reminds us that protecting more, not less, is imperative. To allow us to have the best chance at mitigating climate change in this area, all recharge areas, lake basins, river valleys, forests and arable land need protection. Our organization urges you to expand your map areas as outlined above IN ADDITION to what has already been included in the study area map.
Thank you for this opportunity to comment.