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2004 Annual Report

Welcome - Our Story - Steering Committee - Not-For-Profit Governance Report - Community Commitment Report
Financial Statements - Excerpts from Relevant Reports - FORCE Public Activity Report - Acknowledgements


Excerpts from Relevant Reports

We know the time spent by FORCE volunteers developing relationships with and informing interested organization and agencies has been worthwhile when we see comments like this in a City of Hamilton Report to Council…
“The Planning and Development Department has circulated the development proposal to all concerned departments and agencies. In particular, all the proponents supporting studies have been sent to the School Boards, Region of Halton, Town of Milton, City of Burlington, Conservation Halton, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for circulation to Ministry of Transportation, Ministry of Natural Resources, and Ministry of Environment. The Niagara Escarpment Commission has also requested to participate in the review of the applications and has been provided the documentation submitted. Preliminary comments received from these agencies have identified significant concerns. The type of issues range from concerns regarding student safety and impact on water quality in the schools from the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board and Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board, to deficiencies in the environmental work identified by Conservation Halton. The surrounding municipalities of the Region of Halton, Town of Milton, and the City of Burlington have major concerns with traffic, environmental impacts, water quality and quantity etc. All concerns will be further evaluated as part of the City’s peer review and the Combined Aggregate Review Team process.”

City of Hamilton Planning & Development Department

The full examination of the Lowndes Holdings application includes a peer review process, paid for by the proponent. The City is very clear about the lines of authority for this process…
“It is important to acknowledge that while the proponent is providing funding to the City to pay for the peer reviews, the City’s Peer Review Team reports directly to the City’s Director of Development and Real Estate and not to the proponent. The Peer Review Team is accountable to the City. This arrangement is required so that the City has access to resources and expertise that would otherwise not be available to ensure that the proponent provides sufficient information to evaluate the proposals, that there is a thorough technical review, and that the interests and issues that are within the City’s mandate are properly addressed.”

City of Hamilton Planning & Development Department

The issues we have with the proposed Quarry are shared with other municipalities and agencies…
“There are three major issues of concern to the Town of Milton. These include traffic impact, hydrogeological impacts from dewatering of the Amabel Aquifer and any downstream impacts on natural systems as a result of the proposal.”

Town of Milton Planning & Development Department

There are serious environmental issues which have not been adequately addressed and further, the applications are contrary to the Provincial Policy Statement (Policies 2.3.1 Natural Heritage, 2.3.2, 2.3.3, 2.4.1 Water Quality and Quantity), contrary to the Hamilton Wentworth Official Plan (Part C, Policies 1.1 Environmentally Significant Areas 1.1.2, 2.2.9 Mineral Aggregates), and contrary to the Flamborough Official Plan (Policies B.1.10 Wetlands, B.7.4(iii), C.3 Environmentally Significant Areas). The proposal gives limited consideration to the impacts of the proposed extraction on the environmentally significant areas, provincially significant wetlands, fish habitat, significant wildlife habitat, endangered or threatened species, ecological linkages/wildlife corridors, hydrology and hydrogeology. Nor does the applicant adequately address mitigation measures and monitoring to ensure that these features are protected during the proposed extraction and rehabilitation phases, and following rehabilitation.”

Conservation Halton Watershed Planning Services

Our fact finding has validated our earlier statement, that no responsible person would approve aggregate extraction in this area:
The Lowndes Holdings property contains significant natural features and functions that contribute to the biological diversity and ecological integrity of the region.  This is based on the geographic extent of natural features present, the diversity of communities represented, the quality of natural areas, the hydrologic attributes of wetlands and creeks and the interconnectedness of the natural areas.  Few areas of southern Ontario have this combination of natural attributes and it is for this reason that so many natural heritage features have been designated by programs such as the Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI), the Environmentally Significant Areas (ESA) program of the City of Hamilton, the Environmentally Sensitive Areas (ESA) program of the Region of Halton, the Wetland Evaluation Manual for Southern Ontario that designates Provincially Significant Wetlands (PSW), the Greenbelt Taskforce, the Big Picture project, and the Bronte Creek Watershed study of Conservation Halton.

North-South Environmental Inc. prepared for FORCE

As we build our case through the commissioning of expert reviews our worst fears are concerns are being confirmed:
The Carlisle municipal water supply wells that draw drinking water from the Amabel Formation dolostone aquifer, are also at risk of being adversely affected by the proposed Quarry. Pumping of large volumes of groundwater from the Quarry will change the well capture zones and WHPAs of the Carlisle wells. The new well capture zones may encounter potential contaminant sources and other groundwater quality and quantity issues not previously identified or considered prior to Quarry operation. There are assessment requirements under the Province’s new Watershed-Based Source Protection Planning initiative specifically directed to proposed new quarries that must be considered and completed. Under this initiative, because the proposed Quarry is located within the 2 year capture zone or WHPA for the Carlisle wells, the risk posed by the Quarry and final Quarry land use to these wells needs to assessed and/or the development of the Quarry restricted. Since the Quarry will be allowed to flood following aggregate extraction, the resulting surface water also potentially poses a bacteriological/pathogenic threat to the Carlisle municipal wells that may necessitate upgrading of treatment requirements for these wells. None of these issues have been discussed or addressed by the proponent.

Intera Engineering Ltd. prepared FORCE

The City of Hamilton acknowledges FORCE as the Community's representative on the issue of the quarry, and has included FORCE in the Review and Decision Making Process.
...the Aggregate Planning Advisor has been working with City staff to assist in review of the development applications, selecting the City’s Peer Review Team, and meeting with City staff, the proponent and their consultants. He has also met with representatives from the residents' group FORCE to discuss the City’s approach to the review of these applications.

Planning and Economic Development Committee Report, City of Hamilton


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