Have Your Say – Development Charges – Town of Caledon Public Meeting April 23 at 1 p.m.

Development charges are new fees paid by developers to help cover the initial capital cost of infrastructure required to accomodate service growth. This infrastructure may include roads, sidewalks, recreational facilities, libraries, parks, fire stations and other infrastructure needed to support complete communities.

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Watch and Listen to Tim Gray in Belfountain

The link below connects you to the YouTube video of Tim Gray’s presentation at the Belfountain Community Organization Meeting March 26th, 2019. Tim is Executive Director of Environmental Defence.

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It Runs Downstream (Erin Waste Water Treatment Plant)

What we learned:

  • Erin is expected to triple in size from 4,415 to 14,500 residents creating housing, industrial and commercial area, a school, new roads and a waste water treatment plant.
  • Chemically treated effluent from Erin and Hillsburgh is proposed to be discharged into the West Credit River at Winston Churchill – 3 km upstream from Belfountain.
  • Treating waste water does not remove endocrine disruptors, estrogen-based compounds, salt from roads, medications, biotoxins, micro-plastics from laundry, salt loads/ammonia from water softeners tied to household sewage.
  • The WCR cold-water native trout fishery, habitat and health of our river will collapse.
  • Residents use water from the West Credit as source water for their household

What you can do:

Email, write or call Sylvia Jones, MPP Caledon, the Town of Caledon, Region of Peel, the Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry to address your concerns:

  • Require objective and expert peer reviewing of the environmental processes leading up to approval of the EA for the waste water treatment plant.
  • Appeal to the Minister that this WWTP not be approved, full build out of Erin’s development proposal- effluent flows instream chloride concentrations will exceed aquatic guidelines for chronic exposure.
  • The Town of Caledon and Region of Peel need to be fully aware of the Town of Erin/Wellington waste water treatment plant as they may be responsible for downstream clean up.
  • Confirm all government agencies have fully evaluated effluent discharge into the West Credit River versus alternative treatment methods.
  • The impacts to West Credit River are cumulative – the waste water treatment plant, Erin pit expansion, and the proposed development all within 3 kilometers of Belfountain.

Introduction:

The purpose of this presentation is to inform you of Erin’s proposed Waste Water Treatment Plant on the West Credit River, accompanying urban growth and resulting impacts on the cold-water fishery and river health in Belfountain. This information has been compiled by Ann Seymour. This issue literally landed in her back yard; she lives in Belfountain on the West Credit River.

Erin Growth: Some Facts

  • Timeline: Four phases of growth, 20 years of construction, beginning within three years and will include a WWTP
  • Locations: Erin will have four housing developments and Hillsburgh has 800 acres also to be developed. Sewage from Hillsburgh will be piped to the Erin WWTP. The WWTP is designed to treat sewage from all of Erin and Hillsburgh’s current homes and planned growth. Erin will triple in size, in other words be 80% the size of Orangeville.
  • Effluent discharge sites are in priority ranking, WCR at Caledon-Wellington border (at Winston Churchill Blvd.), WCR on #10 or the Halton Crushed Stone Pit sites near Winston Churchill, a mere 3 km upstream of Belfountain.
  • MNRF have recently encouraged the Town of Erin to explore whether there are less aquatically sensitive locations in the subwatershed to the site of the proposed WWTP.
  • Driving this growth is Solmar Development and Mayor Als’ perception that Erin needs more tax dollars. Solmars real estate sales from 1240 houses, an industrial park, commercial and retail space, a school, etc. will be in over 1⁄2 a billion of dollars (1,240 x 450k = 563.5 million). This WWTP is all about more sprawl…urban development with developers lobbying the politicians.

The West Credit River

  • The WCR is habitat for one of the healthiest cold-water fisheries in Peel Region. It is considered pristine. Erin’s WWTP will release treated effluent into the river at 7400 cubic meters per day. The effluent will be disposed into the WCR directly at the Caledon – Wellington Border at Winston Churchill Blvd.
  • Brook Trout will not tolerate the increased temperature of the effluent discharged into the river.
  • Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) and Credit Valley Conservation (CVC) worked together to establish the baseline data for the Environmental Assessment (EA). The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) and the CVC are the commenting agencies on the EA. There appears to be little or no evidence that Region of Peel residents were consulted in the Environmental Assessment.
  • The MNRF wrote a report detailing their findings on the stress that the effluent will put on the West Credit River.
  • The MNRF expressed many concerns about the assumptions and methodology used in the assimilative capacity of the WCR and the concerns on impacts to native trout habitat.
  • The CVC flagged the impact of exceeding chronic chloride water quality guidelines at full build out flows.
  • Both the MECP and CVC did not further investigate Subsurface Disposal alternatives because sub surface systems take up more space, the local terrain is hilly, and they wanted to wrap-up the E.A. process because these studies would need more time.
  • The BCO and Ann Seymour sent separate Environmental Assessment Bump up Part 2 requests to the MECP in June 2018. The MECP decision is pending. The Town of Erin has said that even if further assessment is granted they will still continue to push for the WWTP.

Concerns:

  • There was no downstream public consultation for this WWTP with Belfountain from the Township of Erin. Belfountain residents were unaware of the proposed WWTP and that the effluent will be discharged directly at the Caledon-Wellington border. Erin pays no downstream environmental costs, as the first community Belfountain receives the potential damage and risk of failure.
  • Long-term the WWTP will not effectively remove salt loads/ammonia from water softeners tied to household sewage. Add winter road salt run off, more roads and the WCR cold-water fishery and health of our river will collapse.
  • Household Toxic Substance Disposal into Sewage System: Erin plans to “educate” their population about what not to dispose into the sewage system. An education program is not a substitution for removal of toxins. Education programs are a fig-leaf to avoid having to address a real problem, and not an adequate solution; there is never enough certainty and isn’t equivalent to removing toxins. Waters remain polluted with biotoxins, micro-plastics from laundry, etc., as people haphazardly and unknowingly pour into their drains substances that cannot be effectively treated by the WWTP. It is human nature to not strictly adhere to disposal guidelines, and as result remnants of these toxic materials will be released into the WCR.
  • The WCR cold-water fishery over the long-term will not tolerate endocrine disruptors, estrogen-based compounds, salt and medications from effluent as the WWTP cannot effectively remove them. The technology is not there.

Conclusions:

  • It is understood that Erin would like to grow; however, with such ambitious development, when completed, the West Credit River will not tolerate Erin and Hillsburgh’s effluent.
  • This proposed WWTP will result in the eventual collapse of the native cold-water trout fishery and health of our river.
  • This is a “Places to Grow” site that cannot support intense development and growth. The WWTP allows for more units to be shoe-horned into the growth area by developers. Erin and Hillsburgh should continue to have private septic systems so as to not have negative impact on what we treasure.
  • Humans cannot continue to remove habitat from another species, we cannot continue to do business in this way; Nature Needs a Place to Grow! It is unethical to destroy one of the few remaining cold-water fisheries in southern Ontario.
  • There is a solution and a compromise for Erin and Belfountain. Erin can still grow by controlling sprawl smartly, putting households on individual septic sewage systems and cancel their WWTP. The proposed WWTP is in the wrong location; the West Credit River ecosystem cannot support it.
  • The MOE will ultimately either approve the report, or make recommendations to the Town of Erin to make adjustments or further research.
  • Erin expects a response by early summer.
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Have Your Say – Aggregate Rehabilitation Plan for Belfountain – Town of Caledon Meeting – April 17th 6- 9 p.m.

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They’re Coming – Learn How to Manage Invasives – Next Saturday RSVP Today Please

“Mary Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow?”  With Goutweed, Knotweed and  Vinca as far as the eye can go?

Got troubles with invasives?  Sign up for the best workshop ever. This workshop is tuned to our rural environment.

Thanks to the Town of Caledon Community Green Fund you can learn how to manage those plants and trees that take over your garden.

Where: Belfountain Community Hall
When: April 13th 9am – 2:30pm
Who:  Stephen Smith from Ufora, will walk you through invasive species management. Lee Merrill from the Credit Valley Conservation Authority, will outline what invasive management consists of in Belfountain park.

Brown bag lunch of tuna or egg sandwiches will be provided.

Agenda

  • 9:00 – 10:00 – What are invasive species and why are they an issue
  • 10:00 -10:15 – Break
  • 10:15 – 12:00 – Commonly found invasive species and what you can do
  • 12:00 – 12:30 – Lunch
  • 12:30 – 1:00 – What CVC is doing at Belfountain Conservation Area in response to invasive species
  • 1:00 – 2:30 – Field Tour: Walk through the conservation area to see some of the projects and plant ID tips

Sign Up Now.  RSVP to secretary@belfountain.ca required by April 8th, 2019 with sandwich choice.

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Another Gravel Pit in our Community !

As announced in the recent PitNotes –

There is an application for ANOTHER new gravel pit in our community.

It would be located at 17736 Heart Lake Rd. between Charleston and Escarpment Sideroad.

This will be a massive below-the-water table gravel pit. It will go so far below the water than you could submerge a 9-storey building in the pit below the water table.

It is VERY IMPORTANT that you come to the public information session this coming MONDAY evening March 25th, 6pm – 8pm, at Caledon Village Place, 18313 Hurontario St. (Highway 10).

This is your opportunity to learn how this proposal will impact you and your family’s health, water, air quality, quality of life, property value and the environment. Learn how you can influence the outcome prior to the company being issued an aggregate license.

PLEASE COME TO THE PUBLIC MEETING. Staying at home is a vote for the pit.

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Invasive Species Workshop – April 13th 2019

“Mary Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow?”  With Goutweed, Knotweed and  Vinca as far as the eye can go?

Got troubles with invasives?  Sign up for the best workshop ever. This workshop is tuned to our rural environment.

Thanks to the Town of Caledon Community Green Fund you can learn how to manage those plants and trees that take over your garden.

Where: Belfountain Community Hall
When: April 13th 9am – 2:30pm
Who:  Stephen Smith from Ufora, will walk you through invasive species management. Lee Merrill from the Credit Valley Conservation Authority, will outline what invasive management consists of in Belfountain park.

Brown bag lunch of tuna or egg sandwiches will be provided.

Agenda

  • 9:00 – 10:00 – What are invasive species and why are they an issue
  • 10:00 -10:15 – Break
  • 10:15 – 12:00 – Commonly found invasive species and what you can do
  • 12:00 – 12:30 – Lunch
  • 12:30 – 1:00 – What CVC is doing at Belfountain Conservation Area in response to invasive species
  • 1:00 – 2:30 – Field Tour: Walk through the conservation area to see some of the projects and plant ID tips

Sign Up Now.  RSVP to secretary@belfountain.ca required by April 6th, 2019

Name: 

Lunch: Yes or No

Email:

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Are You Going? Please RSVP for March 26th at 7 p.m. Tim Gray of Environmental Defence: Switching Gears


Switching Gears: Proposed changes to the Growth Plan that replaces the abandoned portions of Bill 66

At a community meeting in 2017, the residents of Belfountain identified themselves as stewards of the land we all love.

The new Ontario Provincial Government introduced Bill 66, “Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act”.

Many residents of Belfountain, Caledon and beyond strongly objected to these changes and schedule 10 was dropped.

The BCO invited Tim Gray, Executive Director of Environmental Defence to share an environmental perspective of Bill 66 and the Provincial revisit of policies such as the Places to Grow Act, Provincial Policy Statement and The Endangered Species Act.

Residents of Belfountain and the public are invited to attend a presentation,
“Switching Gears” at Belfountain Public School on MARCH 26th AT 7.P.M.

Please note, the session may be made available live online and recorded to be made available afterwards.​ MARCH 26th 7 to 9 PM @ Belfountain Public School, 17247 Shaws Creek Road, Belfountain.
NOTE: Total capacity of the Belfountain Public School auditorium is only 200.

[RSVP  YES ] or email rsvp@belfountain.ca

[I am not able to attend, but I wish to subscribe to updates] or email rsvp@belfountain.ca

If you have any event logistical questions, please email to secretary@belfountain.ca

Background reading:
https://www.ola.org/en/legislative-business/bills/parliament-42/session-1/bill-66/
https://environmentaldefence.ca/2019/01/31/switching-gears-proposed-changes-growth-plan-threaten-farms-forests-watersheds-place-abandoned-portions-bill-66/https://www.ola.org/sites/default/files/common/how-bills-become-law-en.pdf
From https://www.ola.org/en/legislative-business/bills/current/  <- note the timeline for Bill 77 
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Belfountain Community Organization – AGM Minutes

January 24 2019, 7:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Appendix containing supporting slides:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1PKZ_eRxI-5Cx-vTX_RXwHk4VXbM-eKi8

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Looking for Something To Do? Interested in Climate Change?

We would like to let you know of a couple climate-action related events, so if you don’t know what to do with your kids over March break, consider getting them involved in some climate action!  Here are a couple options:

1. On Thursday, March 14, a screening of this very impressive documentary, Youth Unstoppable, by and about the young climate activist Slater Jewell.  The documentary covers the last 10 years of youth organizing – and its achievements.  It’s impressive and inspiring.  See the blurb and the eventbrite link below.

2. On Friday, March 15, from 12:30 – 2:00 pm a climate rally at Queen’s Park as part of the global climate strike movement.  At last count, there were rallies being held in 92 different countries around the world and global participant numbers are expected to be edging toward a million.  This movement is really taking off  – as it needs to!  We need to turn this ship around if kids today are to have a safe climate future.  So, come if you can!!  Here’s the facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/304570563750133/
Spread the word!!  Thank you!! 

YOUTH UNSTOPPABLE:PURCHASE YOUR TICKET ON EVENTBRITE: (regular $15 tickets)
https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/youth-unstoppablefridaysforfuture-tickets-57838978943Student ($5) and family ($25 for up to 4 people) – please purchase one regular ticket and reserve: lyn@climatefast.ca – you can pay the additional $10 at the door.  

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