Rouge National Park Reaches Important Final Stages of Establishment

Notice to SLSN members:

This is the time for Naturalists and natural environment advocates to show you care about the beauty, biodiversity and health of the Rouge River watershed and Park and taking steps to protect the Rouge. Important conservation steps in the Rouge to the south of us, can set a tone for future conservation in the Lake Simcoe area in the future.

Some important developments summarized below by Friends of the Rouge.

Ontario Minister Brad Duguid and the Provincial Government are insisting that the Federal Government fully honour its agreement to “Meet or Exceed” the Provincial Rouge Park, Greenbelt and ORM policy framework, as a necessary pre-condition for the transfer of Provincial Rouge Park lands to the Federal Government for the creation of a national Rouge Park (Toronto Star Articles Attached).

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s draft Rouge National Urban Park legislation (Bill C-40) and management plan threaten to undermine the park’s ecological integrity, ecological potential and size.

The originally proposed Rouge NU Park Study Area was 160 km2 of publicly-owned land, mainly in the Greenbelt.

In the maps recently released by Parks Canada, the proposed national Rouge Park has shrunk to an area of only 50 Km2 , less than one third of the original 160 km2 national park proposal.

The current Park proposal is less than half of the publicly owned Greenbelt lands surrounding the Rouge; and only marginally larger than the existing Rouge Park.

Please attend one or more of the upcoming Parks Canada meetings on the Rouge NU Park draft Management Plan and please support FRW’s reasonable request to the Federal Government.

Tuesday September 16 in Pickering, Pickering Recreation Complex, O’Brien Room, 1867 Valley Farm Rd, Pickering, ON L1V 6K7, 7 PM

Thursday September 18 in downtown Toronto, Art Gallery of Ontario, Jackman Hall, 317 Dundas St West, Toronto, ON M5T 1G4 7 PM

Paul Harpley,
President SLSN