Archived Letter – 998

A Source Water and Prime Farmland Legacy for Wellington County

On Thursday, February 18, stakeholders and rights holders in Wellington County will have the opportunity to participate in a discussion that will help establish our legacy for future generations.

The provincial government recognizes that we need to protect our finite, non-renewable resources of source drinking water, prime farmland and natural areas for our collective health and prosperity. Leap-frog development and extractive industrial and commercial activities are putting these valuable assets at risk.

To this end, the province tasked the Land Use Advisory Panel to provide a framework for sustainable population and employment growth. The panel’s report, released in December, unequivocally supports expansion of the existing Greenbelt (Recommendation 71 of the report). Wellington Water Watchers supports this position.

The February 18 event, An Inspired Conservation, hosted by Wellington Water Watchers (with a grant from Environmental Defence) is an invitation-only, half-day forum. The event will engage area stakeholders and rights holders and give them the critical information they need to make decisions that will affect future generations. The event will focus on what a “made-in-Wellington-County” expansion might look like, exploring the economic, environmental and agricultural benefits that Greenbelt expansion will bring to the county.

David Crombie, former mayor of Toronto and chair of Ontario’s Land Use Advisory Panel, will be the keynote speaker and will join four Wellington area community leaders representing business, academia, the farming community and politics, in a panel discussion on Greenbelt expansion.

The Ontario Greenbelt has been proven to add economic and environmental benefits to the areas currently protected: tourism and recreation, business development, a strong agricultural system and sustainable resource use are among many. In 2011, farming in the Golden Horseshoe and Greenbelt areas generated $2.65 billion in GDP. Importantly, protecting areas that sequester and store carbon helps protect and improve our resilience to climate change. We need to expand, not shrink, our critical Greenbelt resource.

Let your representatives know that you want them to leave a robust Greenbelt legacy for Wellington County. Ask them to attend this invitation-only event by contacting Wellington Water Watchers at

Read the report at

To read about the Advisory Panel and the report see

Patti Maurice