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Did you know?

Did you know?

Cotton is said to be the world’s most polluting crop, responsible for as much as 25 percent of the world’s pesticide use. The production of nylon is responsible for up to 25 percent of the United Kingdom’s nitrous oxide emissions. According to studies the World Wildlife Fund has cited, only about 1 percent of pesticides […]

My Turn: Soraya Peerbaye

My Turn: Soraya Peerbaye

Learning about birds As told to Jim MacInnis My parents’ homeland is Mauritius, an island of rich cultural and natural diversity located 900 kilometres east of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean. I spent the first nine years of my life travelling back and forth between Mauritius and Ontario. Mauritius, of course, was home to the […]

Tree follies

Tree follies

by Conor Mihell Following a devastating series of layoffs in northern Ontario’s forest industry triggered by downturns in the U.S. market, the prospect of opening a wood-processing mill in Chapleau that would provide 40 local jobs received widespread and enthusiastic support in the town of 1,700, located northwest of Sudbury.

Water works

Water works

by Jim MacInnis Recently proposed changes to an admittedly creaky piece of legislation – dating back to 1882 – are giving paddlers a sinking feeling. The Navigable Waters Protection Act (NWPA) was enacted during John A. Macdonald’s tenure as prime minister to protect the public right of navigation on Canadian rivers and waterways.

Cool science

Cool science

by Allan Britnell A typical student’s science fair project might analyze local sources of acid rain or show how to grow crystals. Big thinker Daniel Burd, a grade 11 student at Waterloo Collegiate Institute, decided to tackle, in one fell swoop, a common source of household clutter and a growing global ecological problem: plastic bags.

Fear Factor

Fear Factor

When done properly, a carbon-tax system could be the best approach to cutting emissions. As long as you’re not afraid of the T-word by Edward Keenan To o the relief of environmentalists, we’ve reached a stage where, for the most part, all political parties – provincial, federal, even international – agree that we need to […]

Boiling Over

Boiling Over

While the information in Jim MacInnis’s “Water removal” [Summer 2008] did not totally surprise me, it really infuriated me. Why do regional and federal governments continue to give away our water? What will it take to get the message across that unless things change, Canada will run dry? The situation that was allowed to happen […]

Mine Fields

Mine Fields

Ontario’s antiquated legislation allows the mining industry to stake claims almost anywhere and operate without full environmental assessments. Responding to the demands of First Nations and conservation groups like Ontario Nature, Premier Dalton McGuinty promised (again) to overhaul the Mining Act. Will this promise be kept? By Conor Mihell On a sunny, late April day, […]

Ontario Nature’s AGM

Ontario Nature’s AGM

In June, Ontario Nature hosted its 77th annual general meeting (AGM) in conjunction with the Carden Nature Festival. Held at the Sir William Mackenzie Inn in Kirkfield, Ontario, the AGM attracted more than 100 visitors of all ages from across the province. This year, Ontario Nature added a new and well-received activity to its AGM: […]

A bigger, better Greenbelt

A bigger, better Greenbelt

by Anne Bell Ontario’s Greenbelt, covering 728,000 hectares of land that surrounds the Golden Horseshoe, may become even larger. The provincial government has been holding public meetings seeking input on draft criteria to expand the Greenbelt. These criteria will allow for input from community members and organizations in response to proposed expansions, and will ensure […]

Hidden health hazards

Hidden health hazards

by Julee Boan Aging signs warning visitors of health risks from asbestos are the only visible evidence of the contaminants in the soil and air surrounding 17 former military sites scattered across Ontario’s Hudson Bay coastline. Abandoned in 1965, the sites were to function as early indicators of a military attack by detecting aircraft through […]

Chemical cutbacks

Chemical cutbacks

by Sharon Oosthoek A City of Toronto bylaw requiring that small and medium-sized businesses report the use and release of certain toxic chemicals would, if it passes, be precedent setting. Federal regulations demanding accountability for the use and release of chemicals exist but pertain only to large companies. This means that less than 3 percent […]

Great white birds

Great white birds

by Douglas Hunter When four American white pelicans touched down in Owen Sound harbour last May, their unexpected arrival made headlines. The sighting was one of several in the spring of 2008 in the central Great Lakes. Pelicans were also spotted on Michigan’s Saginaw Bay, at Cheboygan on the Straits of Mackinac and along Michigan’s […]

For the defence

For the defence

To mark CONE’s 30-year anniversary, Ontario Nature salutes this grassroots coalition created in our boardroom to safeguard the Niagara Escarpment from developers and industry. While CONE has not won every battle, it is certainly winning the war by making sure that the unesco World Biosphere Reserve that stretches from the Niagara Peninsula to the tip […]

The Nature of My Pond

The Nature of My Pond

These small self-sufficient ecosystems contain a surprising abundance of wildlife. Writer Cecily Ross patiently watches the life of a pond unfold before her by Cecily Ross It is well to have some water in your neighbourhood, to give buoyancy to and float the earth. – Henry David Thoreau, Walden As ponds go, ours isn’t much […]

Short-eared owl

Short-eared owl

This mysterious little raptor must contend with multiple threats to its survival including the absence of a recovery plan to help stabilize its populations by Tim Tiner Quiet, secretive and increasingly rare, the short-eared owl is an enigmatic, ground-nesting seeker of expansive open spaces. A bird that travels widely, it can be found on every […]

Great beginnings

Great beginnings

by Caroline Schultz The business of conservation requires perseverance and endurance. Our goals are mostly long-term and can take years to achieve. Usually the conservation community needs to be satisfied with short-term gains that are baby steps toward what we hope will be a greener and more sustainable future. So Premier Dalton McGuinty’s July 14 […]