Ontario Chapter

Recap of Our Natural Capital Volunteer Workshop in Brampton!

Thank you to everyone who came out to our Natural Capital Volunteer Training Workshop on June 25th, 2014!  We were lucky  the looming storm clouds cleared just in time for the evening.  

Most of our important work are accomplished with help of volunteers, and we were happy to see some new faces join us.    
Volunteers were given a presentation on the Natural Capital concept, introduction to Sierra Club's outing style and things to be aware of when guiding a nature walk.  Then we went for a stroll along Etobicoke Creek Trail behind the Brampton Four Corners Library to highlight how to run an outing.

One of our main goals for this workshop was to discuss ideas about potential outreach activities to expand the Natural Capital project.  We came up with some great ideas and are looking forward to planning and new collaborations to bring an event-filled summer in the Peel Region!  

Brampton's Natural Capital

Natural Capital refers to the stock of natural resources and environmental assets, and how they contribute to building healthy communities. The Natural Capital perspective is a way of placing a monetary value on the ecological goods and services to quantify these benefits.  

Brampton's ecosystems contain many natural areas and urban green spaces that provide the city with ecological goods and services, which translates to valuable Natural Capital.  

Thanks to support from Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Mississauga Community Fund, we are expanding the project by doing walkshops and natural area restoration work throughout Brampton and Mississauga in summer of 2014.  Our goal is to educate and engage the community to raise awareness and appreciation for these natural areas.  

Fixed utility rates will provide no incentive for conserving energy consumption

The Star published an article Energy board proposal for fixed hydro rates called “Robin Hood in Reverse” in the Business section on Tuesday.  In a recent draft report, the Ontario Energy Board proposes a fixed monthly rate for utilities rather than charging households by how much power is consumed.  Sierra Club Canada is a founding member of the Green Energy Coalition (GEC).  “It is Robin Hood in reverse,” argues a letter from the GEC. 

Ajax beach will be swale once culverts removed

Keith Gilligan
Metroland Media
Date published: 
Thu, 06/12/2014

On June 6th, 2014, Sierra Club Canada Foundation was presented with a $60,000 grant from the RBC Royal Bank Blue Water Leadership Grant.  SCCF is proud to partner with the Town of Ajax and Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) in a project to construct bioswales along the Ajax waterfront.  The native wetland plants of these bioswales will capture and filter the untreated stormwater before discharging into Lake Ontario.  This grant will also contribute towards a community awareness program. 

Recap of Erindale Tree Planting

A big thank you to Credit Valley Conservation and everyone who participated in the tree planting on May 31st, 2014 at Erindale Park, Mississauga! 

Sierra Club’s John Bacher Receives Forestry Award

Photo of John Bacher (on right) receiving award from David Milton, Executive Director of Ontario Professional Foresters Association

By Dan McDermott

Veteran Sierra Club Ontario Volunteer Larry Allan Caldwell Dies at 45

The recent passing of Sierra Club Ontario, Niagara Region Group Chair Larry Caldwell was sudden and unexpected. Larry was just 45. He had lived with diabetes for many years, but the disease did little to limit Larry’s work on behalf of Mother Earth and his enthusiastic long term commitment to Sierra Club’s environmental mission. When I became SCO Chapter Director in 2000, Larry was already an active Club volunteer in the Niagara Region.

Heart Lake Pollinator Party in Brampton on June 7th

Come join us at Heart Lake Conservation Area in Brampton on Saturday, June 7th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m!

Learn about the Conservation Area, pollinator plants, and the Gitigaan Mashkiki Medicine Wheel Garden!

Help remove invasive plant species and plant native wildflowers.  Activities also include a guided nature walk and Aboriginal teachings.

For more information, or to RSVP, contact Kristina Jackson at ontariochapter@sierraclub.ca, or at 647-346-8744. 

Save Niagara’s Green Lifeline

By John Bacher

From the raging torrents of the Niagara River to the placid Welland Canal one can walk for ten miles through the wooded forest gardens of the Niagara Escarpment. Here in some patches, old growth giant oaks and maples soar above wild ginger and may apple. This shady glen has spectacular lookouts over the Niagara Fruit Belt to Lake Ontario, such as Queenston Heights and the Woodend Conservation area. These wilds overwhelm relics of 19th century assaults on nature, such as lime kilns, a “haunted” “ghost” tunnel under which the Bruce Trail travel and the stone ruins of the abandoned Third Welland Canal.

Recap of One Sweet Day April 19

Our One Sweet Day event on April 19th was a filled with smiles, sun and fun.  We would like to thank everyone who was involved including the vendors, donors, sponsors, volunteers and attendees; it was a great day thanks to each of you!

Tree Planting in Mississauga on May 31

Come join us at our Annual Tree Planting on Saturday, May 31 from 9am-12pm at Erindale Park, Mississauga!  

For more information contact Lindsey Jennings at ljennings@creditvalleyca.ca or 1-800-668-5557 ext. 445.  

Invasive Asian Carp threaten Canadian waters

By Mary Muter,

Chair, Great Lakes Section, Sierra Club Canada Foundation


The US Army Corps of Engineers recently released a report on options to prevent the very invasive Asian Carp from getting into not just the Great Lakes but also into all waterways and lakes connected to the Great Lakes.

Kristina Jackson's picture

One Sweet Day Family Fun Event April 19th

Celebrate Earth Day at our One Sweet Day Event with the Sierra Club Canada Foundation, Artists, Local Vendors, Bee Keepers and more for a day of Celebration of Honey Bees!!  

The event will be held on Saturday April 19th from 10:30am – 4pm at Sorauren Park in Roncesvalles neighbourhood, Toronto.

A great day to celebrate Spring and honey with the family.  There will be music, games, educational workshops, face painting, a silent auction and more.   

Check out the event on our Facebook page and invite your friends too! 

Happy Birthday Greenbelt!

By: Thaia Jones

Speech to be given at the Greenbelt Celebration on February 28th at Mississauga's Celebration Square: 

Happy 9th Birthday Greenbelt!  I’m Thaia Jones of Sierra Club of Peel.  I’m excited to be here even though I don’t have any skates.    Why, you might ask, am I so excited to celebrate down here in Mississauga, when the Greenbelt is way up there in north Caledon and beyond? 


A USA law, the Lacey Act, has shown to be effective in decreasing the trade of illegal wood products.  This story shows how Canada can also be making steps towards prevention.

Toronto's Lost Rivers

(Photo by Lake Ontario Waterkeeper)

Don't miss a talk on "Toronto's Lost Rivers"  

Wednesday, February 5th at 7pm.


By Dan McDermott, Ontario Chapter Director

At its December meeting the City of Mississauga’s Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC) passed on to Mississauga Council a recommendation to apply to add the City’s publicly owned Credit River and Etobicoke Creek valley lands to the Greenbelt. The Greenbelt resolution is on the Council agenda for its February 12th meeting. If successful, the Mississauga initiative will be the first addition to the Greenbelt under Ontario’s new Urban River Valley (URV) designation, enacted early last year. It will also mark the expansion of the Greenbelt into Ontario’s second most populous municipality.

Goodbye to Nanticoke, and all that coal

Sierra Club Canada's Ontario Chapter was instrumental in the decision by our provincial government to shut down all coal plants. The day has come! Toronto environmental lawyer Dianne Saxe has a nice piece on her website about it: 

Goodbye to Nanticoke, and all that coal

by DIANNE SAXE on JANUARY 15, 2014

January 8 marked the last day of operation of the Nanticoke Generating Station, the last operating coal-fired electrical generating facility in southern Ontario. This latest shut down will help mark 2014 as the year Ontario will become a coal-free jurisdiction.

We must close the Chicago waterways connections to keep Asian carp from taking over our Great Lakes and beyond before it is too late!

The long awaited report from the US Army Corps of Engineers on how to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes has finally been released. The report evaluates the many waterways connecting the Mississippi River to Lake Michigan –all potential avenues to allow several species of Asian carp into the Great Lakes. The 5 year report costing $20M is titled Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (GLMRIS).

Silver and bighead carp already make up about 95% of the biomass in rivers downstream of the Chicago River. Over a century ago Chicago built a canal to reverse the flow of the Chicago River to divert their sewage and stormwater south into the Mississippi rather than their waterfront beaches. The “reversed” Chicago River flow has been supported by two US Supreme Court decisions.