Oak Ridges Moraine

The Oak Ridges Moraine is a 160 kilometre-long, rolling ridge of glacial deposits that acts like a giant sponge in south-central Ontario, feeding 65 river systems and providing drinking water for more than 250,000 people. It’s protected by the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Act (2001) and Plan (ORMCP), and is a recreational refuge for millions of people in the GTA who want to experience nature. Local landowners on the moraine find it a challenge to get a permit to erect something as small as a shed, yet the Green Energy and Economy Act allows developers to put up 150 metre turbines in clear contravention of policies designed to protect the Moraine.

According to legislation, the objectives of the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan include,

(a) Protecting the ecological and hydrological integrity of the Oak Ridges Moraine Area;

(b) Ensuring that only land and resource uses that maintain, improve or restore the ecological and hydrological functions of the Oak Ridges Moraine Area are permitted;

(c) Maintaining, improving or restoring all the elements that contribute to the ecological and hydrological functions of the Oak Ridges Moraine Area, including the quality and quantity of its water and its other resources;

(d) Ensuring that the Oak Ridges Moraine Area is maintained as a continuous natural landform and environment for the benefit of present and future generations;

(e) Providing for land and resource uses and development that are compatible with the other objectives of the Plan;

The corresponding regulation outlines what uses are permitted and what are not. Industrial development, including wind turbines, is not considered a permitted use in Oak Ridges Moraine Act Regulation (Ontario Regulation. 140/02 41(4)).

There are currently six wind projects, totaling 35 turbines, in development on the Moraine.

Please visit the STORM (Save the Oak Ridges Moraine) website to learn more and offer your support: http://stormcoalition.org/