Backgrounder: Support For The Proposed Great Lakes Protection Act
"The Great Lakes define our province - its people, its economy, its very shape. My own family has long enjoyed the beaches and waters of Lake Huron. I commend the government for taking the initiative in preserving the lakes' environmental health."
Hon. David Peterson, Premier of Ontario 1985-1990
"The Great Lakes are a national treasure, as well as a treasure chest of resources that enrich us all. I support the Government of Ontario's latest initiative to protect the health of the Great Lakes."
Rt. Honourable John Turner PC,CC,QC
"Congratulations on your development of the Great Lakes Protection Act and Ontario's Great Lakes Strategy. As Canada's leading conservation organization, the Nature Conservancy of Canada is fully committed to working with your Ministry, indeed all Ontarians, to ensure the successful implementation of the Act."
James Duncan, Regional Vice President, Ontario, Nature Conservancy of Canada
"We're thrilled that the Great Lakes are a priority for the government. Improving protection for the source of drinking water for 80 per cent of Ontarians and protecting our shorelines and beaches is the right thing to do, and we urge all parties to work together to pass a strong Act."
Sarah Winterton, Acting Executive Director, Environmental Defence.
"On behalf of the mayors of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities initiative, I congratulate the Ontario Government for introducing the Great Lakes Protection Act and Strategy. This type of leadership on Great Lakes protection sets a good example and will have an impact across the entire Great Lakes and St. Lawrence region."
Mayor Brian McMullan, Past Chair Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative
"A clean and safe Great Lakes is a priceless asset for large sections of Ontario's tourism industry, and the hundreds of thousands of people we employ. The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario is pleased to see the Province stepping up to protect the Great Lakes' water quality and its ecosystem."
Beth Potter, President, Tourism Industry Association of Ontario
"As brewers of an iconic Canadian product whose single largest ingredient is Canada's great water, we know that water is one of our most valuable natural resources. The Great Lakes Protection Act's objective to preserve this resource for future generations is one that Canada's National Brewers is glad to support."
Jeff Newton, President, Canada's National Brewers
"Twenty percent of the world's surface fresh water is in the Great Lakes and most of it passes through Niagara. As such, we take our stewardship responsibility very seriously, and Niagara applauds the government's new law to protect our valuable Great Lakes."
Gary Burroughs, Past Niagara Regional Chair
"As a long-time advocate of an integrated, watershed approach to regenerating Lake Ontario, I am pleased to see a new initiative to protect the Great Lakes is underway. It builds on the work of the Waterfront Regeneration Trust and its community partners to establishing the 720 km Waterfront Trail from Niagara to Quebec--a critical first step toward regenerating the waterfront and providing public access."
David Crombie, Founding Chair, Waterfront Regeneration Trust
"As a lakeside community, Oakville residents realize the importance of the Great Lakes to their health, wellbeing and our town's livability. Let's celebrate the introduction of the Great Lakes Protection Act with a tap water toast in recognition of the fact that clean drinking water - Oakville gets it from Lake Ontario - is essential to our very lives."
Mayor Rob Burton, Mayor of Oakville
"This year marks the 20th anniversary of the creation of the Waterfront Trail, an innovative project that has been a catalyst for hundreds of projects. It has made it possible for Ontarians to enjoy their Great Lakes heritage up close. We applaud the provincial government's renewed Great Lakes protection efforts that are an important complement to our work and boost to protecting this incredible provincial asset."
Marlaine Koehler, Executive Director, Waterfront Regeneration Trust
"With the introduction of a proposed Great Lakes Protection Act, Ontario can become a true leader in Great Lakes protection. The Act is vital as it provides new legal tools, priority actions aligned with community goals and is supported by Provincial funds. Actions triggered by the Great Lakes Protection Act, especially developing and implementing stronger safeguards for Great Lakes water quality, can bring about measurable success in dealing with 21st Century threats."
Mayor Steve Parish, Mayor of Ajax
"Science clearly indicates that the Great Lakes, and particularly shoreline wetlands, are critically important to many wildlife species in Ontario. These wetlands are also vital to the quality of water in the Great Lakes and provide abundant recreational activities for Ontarians. Ducks Unlimited Canada commends the Province on its commitment to the Great Lakes Protection Act and the development of tools we need to take practical action to protect these valuable natural resources."
Mark Gloutney Ph.D., Director of Regional Operations - Eastern Region, Manager of Provincial Operations - Ontario, Ducks Unlimited Canada
"The Great Lakes Protection Act is a catalyst for change, and we welcome it. Protecting beaches, cleaning up harbours, halting pollution, and improving drinking water standards will benefit businesses and individuals on both sides of the border. Ontario should be applauded for recognizing that people need Great Lakes where every person can safely go to a beach, drink from a tap, or catch a fish."
Mark Mattson, President, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper.
"I am very pleased to see meaningful new ways for people to get involved in protecting the Great Lakes. Being able to target protection to the priorities that communities identify for their part of the Great Lakes is a great step forward. Linking different decisions so that they all move Great Lakes protection in the same direction is a great innovation in our approach to protecting the lakes."
Theresa McClenaghan, Executive Director, Canadian Environmental Law Association
"The mission of the Water Technology Acceleration project is to grow the water sector in Ontario by helping to accelerate commercialization, strengthen export investment and inform innovative water policy. Critical to the success of our organization, and in fact to Ontario, is the protection of our greatest water source. We see the Great Lakes as an important focal point for water innovation, an opportunity to showcase our creativity and in doing so, bring jobs and investment to Ontario."
Nicholas Parker, Chair, WaterTAP