Ontario Chapter

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At Sierra Club Ontario, our work mainly focuses on protecting the Great Lakes ecosystem, increasing awareness about air pollution, and promoting Green Energy adoption in Ontario. Sierra Club Ontario also works on very local issues, in coordination with smaller communities in Ontario.

Joint submission from environmental groups on Environmental Assessment requirements for “advanced recycling” facilities

Sierra Club Ontario joins 16 other environmental groups in submitting a joint letter against the provincial proposal.

 

February 28, 2022 

Ian Drew 
Resource Recovery Policy Branch 
40 St. Clair Avenue West, 8th floor 
Toronto, ON 
M4V 1M2 

Monstrous Mid-Peninsula Highway Sought to Be Resurrected from the Dead

In Memory of Alicja Rozanska.

From John Bacher:

Shortly after being forced into hospitalization following an attack of congenital heart failure, veteran environmentalist Doug Draper sent me an ominous warning. He informed me that powerful cliques in Niagara were trying to convince the Ontario provincial government of Premier Doug Ford to resurrect the terminated 130-kilometer Mid-Peninsula Highway from the dead. 

Who, me? How we can mitigate air pollution and improve our health

Air pollution does not have to be as obvious or as extreme as that in Delhi to cause harm. Believe it or not, even Canada – a place we think of as very clean and healthy – experiences air pollution which is caused both by human activity, such as simple daily tasks or, more complex economic activity such as building, manufacturing, farming, and mining.

The choices we make, both in our everyday lives, as well as in supporting specific public policies, have important effects on how our neighbourhoods, our provinces, and our country addresses air pollution. 

Protesters' idling trucks are making downtown Ottawa's air quality worse

Author: 
Sarah Sears
Source: 
CBC
Date published: 
Thu, 02/10/2022

Fumes from anti-vaccine mandate protesters' trucks and smoke from their barbecues and campfires is damaging air quality in downtown Ottawa.

Local resident Bonnie Charette said she wears a mask outside downtown — partly as a COVID-19 precaution and partly because of what she calls the "stench" in the air.

"The smell is disgusting," she said.

Abby Donald, who lives in an area where trucks line the streets, agrees.

"I hate breathing it in," she said. "I walk into my apartment and I smell like it."

The Right To Repair & Why We Need It

The typical lifespan of products today seem to only be a few years. From mobile phones, to dishwashers, to equipment; you buy a product, use it for a few years, and then it breaks. Leaving you with only one or two, usually costly, options. In fact, it is almost always easier and cheaper to replace the product with a new one, instead of simply repairing it. This has become the standard. 

Sierra Club Ontario members oppose proposed urban expansions in Niagara

Proposals have been put forward to urbanize vast swaths of land via the Niagara Region’s new Official Plan. Planned urban expansions threaten Canada’s most biologically diverse Carolinian zone.  These expansions would impinge on land currently restricted for rural purposes, including habitats for many endangered and declining species.

Two members of Sierra Club Ontario (Dr. John Bacher and Danny Beaton) recently spoke to oppose planned urban expansions to the Niagara region. Click to see their full presentations. 

Stopping Forest Extinction

By Dr John Bacher and Danny Beaton, Mohawk of the Turtle Clan.

In Memory of Alicja Rozanska.

Crazed Axe-Wielding Mad Men Threaten Niagara.

The mentality of those doing land use planning in the Niagara Region was captured vividly by paleontologist Michael Benton, through his examination of the catastrophic mid-Permian extinctions. Benton described how during this era, “vast swaths” of the trees of life “are cut short, as if attacked by a crazed, axe-wielding madmen.”

The holiday tradition we’d be better off without

Whether or not we actually celebrate Christmas, we’re often surrounded by images of a traditionally decorated living room during the holiday season. These scenes often include a lavishly decorated tree, neatly wrapped presents, stockings hung from a mantel, festoons of miscellaneous greenery, and of course… the log fire in the fireplace. There are many “inconvenient truths” about wood burning. Let’s start with one of them: no matter how dry and well-seasoned the fuel, wood smoke is a dangerous air pollutant. Sadly, wood burning is often unrecognized as a problem. It’s often socially acceptable to light a fireplace, even if it means blanketing a neighbourhood with harmful smoke.

Ring of Fire Assessment: An Assessment of Reflections From the Members of Nishnawbe Aski Nation Territory

Please find the full Assessment Report attatched below.

By: Joseph Duncan and Aleksandra Spasevski.

In honour of Ringo Fiddler. 

Ontario’s Far North recently received attention due to the $60 billion chromite mining potential. The massive mining project is known as the Ring of Fire. Both provincial and federal leaders have identified this mining opportunity as a multigenerational opportunity that can create both economic and societal benefits for communities (Chetkiewicz & Lintner, 2014).

Field Notes from a Citizen Scientist

I live a few hundred metres from the Queensway in Ottawa, and have long wondered about the air quality in the neighbourhood. Is my proximity to the highway and a major feeder road bad for my health? Ottawa is quite green, but is the air quality okay? After reading about the Breathe Easy campaign in an Ottawa Citizen article, I put my hand up to get involved. After a quick tutorial by the friendly local coordinator, Jake Cole, I set out to take some readings, and made a few observations along the way:

The Lifecycle of Plastics

We all know there is a problem with plastics. But just how deep does that problem go?

It is a well known fact that plastic pollution is ending up in the natural environment. We see it everywhere. With no way to fully break down, plastic waste remains, and will continue to remain for hundreds of years. From the depths of the ocean, to the North Pole, plastics and microplastics are being found in animals, water and in the food that we eat.

Ontario Land Tribunal Dismissal of Riverfront Rezoning Case Sparks Request to Appeal to the Divisional Court

By Dr John Bacher and Danny Beaton, Mohawk of the Turtle Clan.

In Memory of Alicja Rozanska.

On September 17, 2021, the Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT) dismissed a zoning appeal by the Ontario Sierra Club Executive Committee Member, John Bacher. The Sierra Club Canada Foundation had separately sought standing as a participant in the case. On October 4, 2021, lawyers at Eric K. Gillespie Professional Corporation filed a motion for leave to appeal with the Divisional Court, the first step in asking the court to review the OLT decision.

All Party Consent for Ring of Fire Mining Shows Tragic Decline in Ontario Political Culture

By Dr John Bacher and Danny Beaton, Mohawk of the Turtle Clan.

In Memory of Alicja Rozanska.

Contemptuously, in the recent federal election there was an obscene amount of all party support to one of the most ecocidal threats to our planet. That threatened area is the Hudson Bay Lowlands, whose vast peat bogs perform a role more vital than ever before. It serves as a refrigerator for our planet which is under attack by anthropogenic climate change. These lowlands are the largest contiguous tract remaining of temperate wetlands on our sacred Mother Earth.