Ontario: Conservation Authorities Act to Undergo Review

Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) recently announced that the Conservation Authorities Act is to be reviewed.

The Act, administered by MNRF, was passed in 1946 in response to extensive flooding, erosion, deforestation and soil loss resulting from poor land, water, and forestry management practices in prior decades.

The act enables two or more municipalities in a common watershed to establish a conservation authority in conjunction with the province. The purpose of a conservation authority is to deliver a local resource management program at the watershed scale for both provincial and municipal interests.

Conservation authorities have played a significant role in Ontario’s natural resource management landscape for nearly 70 years, establishing a successful legacy of resource stewardship and an impressive record of protecting people, property, and communities from water-related natural hazards (e.g. flooding, drought, erosion). In order to ensure the act is meeting current needs, the MNRF has released a discussion paper intended to solicit public and multi-sector perspectives on the existing legislative, regulatory and/or policy framework which governs conservation authorities and the programs and services they deliver. Comments accepted until October 19, 2015.

Canadian Water and Wastewater Association