Food, Water Issues Should be Included in 2018 Election Campaign

By Marni Walsh
Orangeville Citizen, March 30, 2017

 

The North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce (NDACT) is asking Ontarians to focus on food and water issues as the politicians begin to gear up for the 2018 provincial election.

The task force is launching a campaign to make sure all politicians seeking election “make the preservation of our valuable farmland and source waters a #1 election priority.”

Alia Jalbert, the new Chair of NDACT and its legacy movement Food & Water First, says, “If there is one thing that has been a human characteristic throughout history, it is ingenuity; the easy path, in many ways, is to take over nice, cleared land for developments, but I am certain, as witnessed in Europe where there is much more reluctance to convert farmland into suburbs, that when that route is removed other ideas will emerge.”

Ms. Jalbert says the most imminent threat to Ontario Farmland, and to Dufferin-Caledon specifically, is “development, in a variety of shapes, outside of already established communities – housing developments, aggregate extraction, and other industrial uses of agricultural land.”

She suggests residents press politicians on questions that focus on the preservation of food and water such as: “What to you consider sustainable growth? Without any political action, how do you see the current trend (virtually no farmland from Markham to Toronto any more) ever ending? What options are there for growth if farmland and environmentally sensitive land are removed from the growth equation?”    

Provincial improvements have been made in recent years, largely due to organizations like NDACT working hard to keep preservation and protection issues in the political forefront.

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