Oct 10, 2013
By Michael Kramer
Dismantling environmental protections in this province could have disastrous results. That’s from Ontario’s Environmental Commissioner. Gord Miller says protections for species at risk “have been gutted” while major industrial activities are able to proceed almost unchecked.
He says provincial parks are being turned into revenue streams, and warns there’s no funding or plan to deal with invasive species like the emerald ash borer and the Asian carp.
Miller also says there’s no formal environmental monitoring for Ontario’s far north, despite intensive mineral exploration and development around the Ring of Fire.
In his annual report, Miller casts doubt on the ability of the Ministry of Natural Resources to protect the environment, and says it is “walking away from many parts of its job to safeguard wildlife.”
He calls cuts to regulations, staff and programs at the Ministry “short-sighted and regressive,” and says they pose significant ecological risks.