Savour Fair recap

Vice Chair Shirley Boxen and Karren Wallace of NDACT joined Savour Fair on August 24 in clebration of Dufferin's harvest - reminding guests that our farmland and drinking water are precious resources that need to be protected for future generations. The event, held at Landman's Garden and Bakery, featured "the best food, drink and art that the Hills of the Headwaters has to offer."

By Marni Walsh

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Published in the Shelburne Free Press, August 27, 2014.

 

Economic impact study expected in quarry process

Guelph-Eramosa council will have an economic impact study and a haul route study done as part of a rezoning application for the hidden quarry proposed by James Dick Construction near here.

Those were the two main issues raised at a public meeting attended by more than 200 people on Aug. 12 at the Rockmosa Community Centre. The meeting was called to hear the preliminary findings of the township’s planner on the hidden quarry zoning application.

The controversial quarry being proposed by company, which is seeking an aggregate licence from the Ministry of Natural Resources and a zoning amendment from Guelph-Eramosa council that will allow it to proceed with the pit expected to produce about 700,000 tonnes annually of sand, gravel and dolostone. The planned quarry would cover about 25 hectares (61 acres) of the 39 hectare (100 acre) property at the northeast corner of the 6th Line and Highway 7.

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Stop preferential treatment of aggregate industry

Residents of Ontario continue to raise concerns about the special treatment given to the aggregate industry, yet these concerns are not being addressed in government policy decisions. The recent review of the Aggregate Resources Act did not adequately recognize the concerns raised by the public and impacted local communities.

The special, preferential treatment of the aggregate industry needs to stop. Key pieces of environmental protection legislation include an “exception” clause for the aggregate industry. Big business interests should not take priority over the health, safety and quality of life of rural Ontarians, the environment and prime farmland.

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What about the water?

Some interesting facts and figures present themselves along the Food and Water pathway. We know a lot about about food producing land and it being a non-renewable resource. It is different getting agreement of issues of water as it presents its own puzzles. It flows, it evaporates, it disappears, and can be almost impossible to track.

Water is a fundamental necessity, and clean water should  be an assumption. In fact, any drilling into the water table should be carefully regulated and monitored with the proponent providing evidence of due caution.

There is currently drilling underway to install transmission towers in our County, and some of its activity is taking place on old rail beds (long known to contain contaminants) and through manure piles. The Walkerton tragedy has taught us what is at stake. With all we know, why is this being allowed?

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By Shirley Boxem
Published in the Orangeville Banner, Food & Water First column, August 5, 2014.

NDACT calls for united front on Food and Water First

The North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Task Force (NDACT) held its annual general meeting for approximately 40 members on July 10th in Horning’s Mills. Carl Cosack Chair of the taskforce brought members up to date on NDACT activities from the past year, stressing the need for a continued, united front on the Food and Water First mandate to protect prime farmland and source water. Shirley Boxem, Vice Chair spoke to the members about the urgency in “keeping this issue at the forefront, as the legislative rules have not changed and the very same mega quarry application could be applied for today.”

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