Create a Great Lakes Act that recognizes the central place of our four Great Lakes in a healthy Ontario
- Clean up beaches and toxic hot spots once and for all in the next five years.
- Support the efforts of municipalities to establish and maintain green infrastructure, like urban forests, wetlands, stormwater ponds, and green roofs, to reduce the cost of water treatment and floodwater control and to keep our waterways and lakes healthy.
- Make Ontarian’s proud to live beside four of the five Great Lakes by helping communities celebrate their waterfronts.
Ontario borders four of the five Great Lakes, more than any other province or state. These inland seas are sources of drinking water for millions of Ontarians. We swim, fish and boat on their waters and relax along their shores. They feed our industries and provide climate-friendly transportation for heavy goods. In a world where clean fresh water has become hugely valuable, we need to do a better job of safeguarding this fantastic natural asset on our doorstep. Our current protection efforts are often fragmented and lack the proper resources to deal with growing threats like climate change and invasive species. A Great Lakes Act can help us develop a strong framework for protecting the lakes now and in the future.
Greater use of green infrastructure like storm water ponds, wetlands, urban forests and green roofs can also help us to clean water runoff, reduce flooding and protect beaches at a fraction of the cost of conventional systems. These approaches have the added advantage of helping to cool our cities and make for green and pleasant neighbourhoods.