Keep your promise

Interesting how a local event here in Centre Wellington on Sunday coincided with a provincial government action, a national event this week in Montreal – with world leaders gathering. 

All levels focused on the same issue: will we try to save and strengthen our remaining natural eco-systems, the foundations of life – or maybe just continue to allow business interests to consume them, seeing woodlands, wetlands as infinite sources of raw materials or areas to be “developed”.

Often the ways things are in our own lifetime becomes a base line for how we think things perhaps always were. Only by learning history do we see for example the huge devastation in Ontario caused by deforestation practices of early 19th century residents.

In Norfolk County with the removal of almost every tree, there were sand dunes a metre deep, fence rows disappeared under sand. Here in Elora almost every tree was felled in the Gorge. The critical or sacred value of ecosystems wasn’t in the culture.

One determined man, Edmund Zavitz, and small groups of very concerned citizens brought in the establishment of conservation areas! It was a huge battle accomplished over many years. He was revered as a hero throughout rural Ontario, particularly in areas previously devastated by the spreading deserts.

Today our hard-fought-for conservation authorities in Ontario are now under attack by the Ontario government. Forcing our conservation authorities to sell, lease or dispose of protected and sensitive conservation authority controlled land – to support housing development and forbidding them to speak up in appeals puts in danger the environmental and ecological future of the province! The province does not need this protected land to support the need for more housing.

The gains made in restoring our farms, parks and woodlands came  through committed effort. 

Citizens are appalled that Doug Ford would like reverse those protections.

Many citizens in Centre Wellington gathered on a cold Sunday afternoon in Elora to say no. Doug Ford we insist you keep your Greenbelt promise!

Carolyn Crozier,