Statement – Province Marks Second Anniversary of Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan
Government makes significant progress as the plan continues to evolve
November 27, 2020
TORONTO — Today, Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, issued the following statement on the second anniversary of the Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan.
“Thanks in large part to the strength of our relationships with community organizations, industry and other partners, we have made considerable progress on commitments outlined in our Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan. We have taken deliberate steps to protect our air, land and water and reduce litter and waste, while lowering greenhouse gas emissions and helping communities prepare for climate change. Our accomplishments include:
- Finalizing and receiving federal recognition of our emissions performance standards program to ensure large, industrial emitters are accountable for their greenhouse gas emissions;
- Establishing an enhanced emissions testing program, requiring regular emissions tests for big polluters such as commercial trucks and buses;
- Laying the foundation for a new model of waste management that puts producers in charge of the lifecycle of their products and packaging;
- Investing $6 million in upgrades to Ontario Parks facilities and services to provide more opportunities for Ontarians to enjoy provincial parks;
- Releasing a discussion paper that will inform Ontario’s first low-carbon hydrogen strategy to create jobs and help the province move towards its greenhouse gas reduction target;
- Partnering with the federal government on the release of a draft new Canada-Ontario Agreement on Great Lakes Water Quality and Ecosystem Health to protect the Great Lakes.
Our Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan is a living document that enables us to modify our plans as new challenges arise, such as COVID-19, and as new data and innovative technologies emerge, like low-carbon hydrogen.
We know there is still a lot more work that needs to be done before we can achieve our goals. That is why we will continue to evolve our plan in a way that leverages new opportunities and works for our diverse communities, including rural, Northern and Indigenous communities.
Our priorities moving forward include:
- Moving to phase out food and organic waste sent to landfill by 2030;
- Finishing the phase out of coal by supporting efforts of Ontario industry to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by reducing and phasing out their use of coal;
- Updating our current policies and consulting on further actions to reduce levels of lead in drinking water;
- Supporting wetland restoration and creation in priority areas of Ontario in partnership with Ducks Unlimited Canada;
- Reinvesting in the Ontario Community Environment Fund (OCEF) to support projects that improve the environment and give people opportunities to experience nature, including dedicated funding to tree planting;
- Continuing initiatives like Ontario’s Living Legacy, starting with a proposal to designate Ostrander Crown Land Block and Point Petre Provincial Wildlife Area, two ecologically significant areas along the southern shore of Prince Edward County, as a conservation reserve;
- Providing young Ontarians with more opportunities to share their insights and ideas on addressing climate change, by establishing a youth climate advisory group.
We will continue to engage and consult with the public, stakeholders, Indigenous communities and other levels of government on the evolution of the Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan to ensure we continue to build upon our progress.
Economic recovery and environmental protection continue to remain priorities for all Ontarians – that is why we are proud of our achievements, especially during these unprecedented and challenging times. Our government looks forward to continuing to make progress to support a healthy economy and a healthy environment.
To learn more about the government’s progress and next steps to protect the environment and address climate change, I encourage you to visit ontario.ca.”
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