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2006 Annual Report

Message from Chair - Environmental Defence - The Proponent - The Application - The Case - Natural Environment - Transportation - Community - Hydrogeology - Financials - Public Activity Report - References - Volunteer Committee

Natural Environment

We contend that mining an ecological gem would be an environmental disaster. The biological and ecological diversity of the lands that St Marys Cement CBM proposes to quarry have been recognized by city, regional and provincial governments for their natural significance. The fences and man-made craters that are part and parcel of a mining operation would destroy the linkages that have created and sustained animal and plant diversity for centuries. Furthermore, the wetlands could likely be de-watered and we anticipate that the Bronte Creek watershed system could be subjected to variations in temperature and volumes.

Conservation Halton provided expert observations2 on the risks that the current Permit To Take Water (PTTW) application could introduce to the quality, temperature and flow rate of water. Among their many concerns, they question the impact on the brown trout and brook trout that depend on ground upwellings for their fall spawn.

Dr. Brent Tegler, noted that before a PTTW is approved that there should be a full Environmental Cost Accounting that determines the "hidden environmental costs; a cost benefit evaluation; and appropriate environmental metrics associated with operating a Groundwater Recirculation System (the proposed groundwater mitigation systems) for a fully operating quarry."3

The proposed quarry site has numerous pre-existing environmental designations in place that are based upon strong and defensible criteria. We maintain that few areas of southern Ontario have this extreme combination of natural attributes. As we prepared this report, the province is pursuing protective measures for species at risk through revised legislation. Those changes can only assist our cause.

The fact remains that proposed aggregate development is contrary to the existing land use planning designations that have been prepared to protect the forests and wetlands found on the site.


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