Proposed Greenbelt expansion to include Don and Humber River Valleys
McGuinty Government Celebrates Fifth Anniversary of Greenbelt
Toronto's Don and Humber River Valleys could soon be permanently protected as part of the Greenbelt.
With the Greenbelt celebrating its fifth anniversary this week, Toronto City Council has unanimously declared its intention to apply to expand the Greenbelt in Toronto beyond the current Rouge River Park.
The proposed additions run through some of Canada's most densely populated urban areas.
Ontario's Greenbelt Plan recognizes the importance of the Don and Humber River Valleys as key watersheds that connect the Greenbelt to the Great Lakes. Adding these river valleys to the Greenbelt would ensure their permanent protection.
Growing the Greenbelt is part of Ontario's plan to protect the environment and develop a prosperous sustainable economy.
- The Greenbelt permanently protects 1.8 million acres of agricultural and environmentally sensitive land around the Greater Golden Horseshoe.
- In 2008, the province developed criteria for municipalities that want to add lands to the Greenbelt.
- In Toronto, the Don and Humber Rivers account for 90 kilometres of waterways.
- Research shows that the Greenbelt contributes essential ecosystem services and benefits worth $2.6 billion.
“Ontario will continue to support efforts to curb urban sprawl by protecting our valuable farm land, countryside, water resources and wetlands. On the fifth anniversary of Ontario's incredible Greenbelt, Toronto's decision to pursue Greenbelt expansion is a great step in the right direction.”
“I can think of no more fitting way to celebrate the fifth anniversary of Ontario's Greenbelt than to have the Don and Humber Rivers become part of it. Torontonians are keen environmentalists and want to see our precious natural resources preserved. The future addition of these two valleys as requested by City Council would mean all three of our cherished river systems will be protected for generations to come.”