ON: CPA supports Ontario’s plan to reduce red tape on development in the Far North

In their Fall Economic Statement, the Ontario government announced a review of the Far North Act with the goal of reducing red tape and restrictions on important economic development projects in the Far North, including the Ring of Fire, all-season roads and electrical transmission projects for communities.
The Far North Act is the legislative framework for land use planning in the Far North. The Act provides for community-based land use planning in the Far North and sets out a joint planning process between First Nations and Ontario.
As a next step, the government issued a proposal to repeal the Far North Act and invited input on its Environmental Registry for Indigenous communities and groups, businesses and other stakeholders to have their say on how to collaboratively open the north for development. The CPA provided comments on the government’s proposed repeal of the Act. In its submission, the CPA said that the propane industry plays an important role in the Ontario economy and is an important primary fuel and energy source for thousands of Ontarians.
The Association noted that it is presently developing a pilot program to develop partnerships between the propane industry and Indigenous communities in Ontario to replace diesel and heating oil with low-emission propane for home energy use, and gas and diesel for transportation fuel. The CPA said it believes that the development of a community-oriented approach will result in economic opportunities as well as skills training, meaningful consultation and respectful relationship building with Indigenous communities.
The CPA stressed that to unlock the economic development potential of the far north, the government must consider propane’s many attributes. As an affordable and portable energy source, propane could fuel northern expansion projects as soon as there is road access.
Given the importance of the propane industry in Ontario, and the immediate, positive benefits of propane, the CPA said it expects to be at the table when discussions around improving economic development conditions in Ontario’s north are taking place. View the CPA’s full submission on the Environment Registry’s website here