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News Archives


Friday, May 26, 2006 - Flamborough Review
Lowndes quarry proposal tests strength of Greenbelt

The strength of Ontario's greenbelt protection legislation will be tested by the Mountsberg Quarry application. That assertion came last week from Rick Smith, the head of a national environmental charity called Environmental Defence, and a special guest at the second annual meeting of FORCE (Friends of Rural Communities and the Environment). Read the Full Article (177 KB)

Saturday, May 20, 2006 - Flamborough Review
Lowndes quarry proposal tests strength of Greenbelt legislation

A quarry application for northeast Flamborough could well be the testing ground for determining the strength of Ontario's greenbelt protection legislation.

Lowndes Holdings Corporation's application for a 68-hectare quarry on the northeast corner of 11th Concession Road East near Milburough Line is the first of its kind involving greenbelt lands since the government enacted protective greenspace legislation last year. Read the Full Article (172 KB)

Friday, May 12, 2006 - Flamborough Review
Hamilton, Halton politicians urged to nix quarry bid

Hamilton and Halton regional politicians have until November 10 to turn down a Mississauga company's plans to create a quarry in Flamborough near Milton.

This makeshift deadline, set by Campbellville resident Kevin Brackley, also comes with a condition.

If the proposal isn't rejected by then, voters may throw out incumbent hopefuls when they cast their municipal ballots November 13, warned Brackley, who heads the Milton Ratepayers Association. Read the Full Article (177 KB)

Thursday, May 11, 2006 - Halton Compass
Quarry opponents out in FORCE

Almost 200 concerned residents packed into the cafeteria of Milton District High School for a public meeting on the proposed Lowndes Quarry. Many waited patiently for over two hours in the humid room before every person who wished to speak had the chance to do so.

At issue is an application dubbed the Proposed Mountsberg Quarry, which would see the creation of an excavation site of 68 hectares of land on the north-east side of 11th Concession and Milburough Line in Flamborough. Read the Full Article (113 KB)

Tuesday, May 9, 2006 - The Canadian Champion
Citizens urge officials to turn down quarry

Halton and Hamilton regional politicians have until November 10 to turn down a Mississauga company's plans to create a quarry in Flamborough near Milton.

This makeshift deadline, set by Campbellville resident Kevin Brackley, also comes with a condition.

If the proposal isn't rejected by then, voters may throw out incumbent hopefuls when they cast their municipal ballots November 13, warned Brackley, who heads the Milton Ratepayers Association. Read the Full Article (172 KB)

Thursday, April 20, 2006
City of Hamilton April 6th, 2006 Open House and Information Meeting: We Came, We Saw, and We will Conquer!

The City of Hamilton's Open House and Information Meeting on Thursday April 6th, 2006 was a milestone evening for all of us opposing the Lowndes Holdings Corp. application to develop the 8th largest quarry in Canada. The meeting was a long time coming but we were there - by the hundreds - communities standing united - with standing room only. We stayed until the end, hours later that night, and we'll be there until the bitter end of this battle.

To view material from the meeting go to the City of Hamilton page and look under "City of Hamilton Update Meeting - April 6, 2006".

Tuesday, April 18, 2006
FORCE Annual General Meeting scheduled for Wednesday May 17th, 7:00 pm at Lawson Park Recreation Centre

All residents are encouraged to attend the 2006 FORCE Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, May 17, from 7:00 - 9:00 pm at Lawson Park.

Graham Flint will present a summary of our recent activities and successes, as well as speak to our upcoming plans. We will also review the Proponent's case and explain why it doesn't hold up.

Hear Rick Smith, Executive Director of Environmental Defence Canada address the importance of our case to drinking water protection and the Greenbelt, and how they can help.

Come out and join us to learn more about the impact the proposed quarry will have on our communities, talk to the Steering Committee, and get involved.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006 - Canadian Champion
Residents come out in droves to oppose quarry

An emotional yet civil crowd of about 400 people turned out for the meeting, which included presentations focusing on the 68-hectare (168-acre) quarry planned for the northeast corner of 11th Concession Road East and Milburough Line. If approved, it will be the eighth largest quarry in Canada.

According to David Lowndes, president of Lowndes Holding Corp., the quarry would take about 3,000,000 tonnes of aggregate from the site per year at maximum production. Read the full Article (175 KB).

Friday, April 14, 2006 - Flamborough Review
Meeting digs up concerns about quarry

While the City of Hamilton isn't yet in a position where it can approve or deny a quarry application for northeast Flamborough, neighbouring residents have already decided.

"Your application has been denied," Waterdown resident Tom Reid told Lowndes Holdings Corporation representatives at a packed public information meeting last Thursday night in Carlisle's Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Elementary School. Read the full Article (181 KB).

Friday, April 14, 2006 - Flamborough Review (Column)
Digging for answers

When it comes to raising the hackles of rural communities, there are two subjects that are guaranteed to do exactly that - landfills and quarries.

I have seen it many times during my career as a reporter. Read the full Column (175 KB).

Friday, April 14, 2006 - Halton Compass
Lowndes in hot seat over quarry

As anticipated, David Lowndes and his staff got a fairly rough ride when the City of Hamilton held a public meeting at Our Lady of Carmel Elementary school on April 6. Read the full Article.

Thursday, April 13, 2006
Regional Municipality of Halton to hold Public Information Session

The Regional Municipality of Halton will be holding a public information session on the Proposed Mountsberg Quarry (Lowndes Holdings Corp.) on May 3rd.

This public information session is an opportunity for Halton residents to make their views known early in the process. Read the full announcement (224 KB).

Monday April 10, 2006
Community Alert About Planned On-Site Activity on Lowndes' Holdings Corp. Property

Longstanding community requests to be alerted to planned activities on the proposed quarry site, especially those involving heavy machinery, may finally be realized. Community residents have stated that this is a simple communications courtesy for the proponent and is important to help us understand what is occurring on site. Michele Ryan, a Stonebury resident, most recently articulated the lack of community liaison by Lowndes Holdings Corp. at the City's Open House and Information Meeting on April 6, 2006 and she made the direct request for notice on behalf of the community once again .

E-mail correspondence from Stan Holiday, Senior Planner, City of Hamilton to Graham Flint, Chair and Spokesperson, FORCE on Monday April 10, 2006 advised that:

"Robert Long advised the City of Hamilton on Friday afternoon {April 7} that they will be starting a shallow drilling program starting Tuesday, April 11, 2006 and that the driller will mobilize on Tuesday, April 18, 2006" {emphasis added}. Mr. Long indicated that "This is our official notice of onsite equipment activity, as discussed again last night."

FORCE is posting this notice at www.StopTheQuarry.ca in order to keep the community informed. Inquiries are also being made into the exact location, nature and purpose of the drilling program, any expected impacts, monitoring and involvement by relevant departments and agencies, as well as follow-up plans and reports.

Monday, April 10, 2006
Ministry of Environment Holds Firm in Decision on Flamborough Springs Permit to Take Water

The Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) took a firm position in favour of protecting sustainable water and our natural environment when it issued a new Permit to Take Water - PTTW - to Flamborough Springs on March 30, 2006. Flamborough Springs had asked for authorization to draw up to 250,000 litres per day. The Ministry of the Environment approved a permit with the following terms and conditions:

FORCE believes that the MOE heard the concerns of the community and took appropriate precautionary steps, in this case requiring comprehensive analysis before allowing a significant increase in the amount of water taken.

Read the full Permit (30 KB). Read the MOE Decision Posting on the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry (80 KB).

Friday, April 7, 2006 - Hamilton Spectator
Carlisle quarry fight could last five years

It could take five years to wind through the process of deciding whether a huge limestone quarry should open north of Carlisle, but proponent David Lowndes and a community group fighting him say they're in it to the end.

Read the full Article (321 KB).

Friday, March 31, 2006 - Flamborough Review Article
Groundwater key issue in quarry debate

The City of Hamilton's first public information meeting on the proposed Mountsberg Quarry in northeast Flamborough is expected to attract a capacity crowd next Thursday. It's also expected to draw some lively discussion about the quarry and its potential impact on groundwater in and around the 154-hectare (380-acre) quarry site at Milburough Line and the 11th Concession Road East. Read the Full Article (177 KB)

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 - Canadian Champion Article
City of Hamilton to hold meeting about quarry

The City of Hamilton will hold a meeting April 6 to provide information and gain public input about the application for the proposed Flamborough quarry by Lowndes Holdings Corp.

The meeting, to take place at the Our Lady of Mount Carmel School in Hamilton, will also cover the City of Hamilton's next steps in the application process, said Stan Holiday, senior planner for the City of Hamilton. Read the Full Article (169 KB)

Friday, March 24, 2006 - Halton Compass Article
Lowndes Quarry Threatens Campbellville's Water

A contentious application in Flamborough will have far-reaching negative affects on Campbellville, warns the leader of the community group fighting the proposal.

Graham Flint, the chair of FORCE (Friends of Rural Communities and the Environment) says the truck traffic would increase significantly on many of the side roads in Campbellville should the quarry application go through. Read the Full Article (107 KB)

Friday, March 17, 2006Hamilton Spectator Article
Quarry Proposal Threatens Carlisle Water

A March 15, 2006 Hamilton Spectator article notes that the independent consultant, hired by the City of Hamilton to review the quarry proposal's technical hydrogeology documents, has confirmed fears that the quality and quantity of Carlisle's municipal well water are both threatened by a huge, proposed stone quarry in northeast Flamborough.

Jager Hims Ltd. of Newmarket, hired by the city to review geological and groundwater studies submitted by Lowndes, reports that "without mitigation, the proposed quarry will likely have a detrimental effect on adjacent water resources such as streams, wetlands and residential wells." It also says, "The operation of the proposed quarry, without mitigation, will affect the capture zone (underground sources) of the Carlisle municipal wells." Jager Hims called for further study of the zone's vulnerability to current and future contamination sources.

Graham Flint of FORCE (Friends of Rural Communities and the Environment) said, "Groundwater is going to be the big issue, the clearest single reason why the proposal should not be approved." That view is shared by Toronto-based Environmental Defence Canada, formerly the Canadian Environmental Defence Fund, which sees the Lowndes proposal as a threat to groundwater and Ontario's new Greenbelt. EDC has made the decision to partner with FORCE.

Executive director Rick Smith said: "Our organization is leading the charge on establishment of the Greenbelt and getting Ontario's new Clean Water Act adopted, and this application involves both issues - source water protection and green space protection."That is not a place we should allow a quarry to be built. We believe it is a precedent-setting case and we will do what we do best - raising its public profile in and outside Hamilton. We will enlist our members across the province and the more than 75 members of the Greenbelt Alliance to ring the alarm bells." EDC will also be supporting FORCE's legal case.

An Information Meeting is being hosted by the City on Thursday April 6 at 6:30 p.m. in Our Lady of Carmel Catholic School, 1624 Centre Rd., south of 10th Concession E.

Read the full article (90 KB).

Thursday, March 16, 2006
New Study says Water from Private Wells is at Risk

A new study called "Water Well Sustainability in Ontario" was released through the Ontario Centres of Excellence, a not-for-profit organization supporting research. It is the first study of private wells done in Ontario in over a decade. The report was written by a panel of experts and led by Queen's University professor Kent Novakowski. Several million Ontario residents rely on drinking water from private wells. The report concludes that Ontario's ground water is largely a safe source of drinking water but that much more work needs to be done to ensure it stays that way for the long term.

The report highlights serious concerns about lack of data, lack of regulation, limited testing, and risks for contamination. As an example, the Ontario Government does not even know how many private wells exist, how many new ones are dug each year, or how many have been abandoned or decommissioned. New and expanded developments can present risks to the quantity and quality of water in the aquifer. Abandoned wells can become pathways that move contaminants from the surface down to the aquifer. In addition to new directions in source water protection, the report makes 10 recommendations including improving the data and knowledge base, a comprehensive province-wide water quality study, and education programs for private well owners.

To read the full report

Sunday, March 12, 2006
FORCE posts Independent Auditor's Report on its 2005 Financial Statements

FORCE made a commitment to effectively manage our collective Community funds raised to support the fight against Lowndes Holdings Corp. Those funds were to support the operations and investments - including the technical expert reports and establishment of an OMB war chest - required to oppose the application for a proposed aggregate development near Carlisle. Consistent with that "contract" with the Community, and in conjunction with the governance structures setup for the not-for-profit corporation, a resolution was adopted appointing independent auditors - MDP, Martyn Dooley & Partners, Chartered Accountants. The full Auditor's Report for FORCE's 2005 Financial Statements (464 KB) is now available.

Thursday, March 9, 2006
Ontario Government Efforts to Establish and Protect Greenbelt Receive a Passing "B" Grade according to Report Card issued by Greenbelt Alliance

The first year of Ontario's 1.8 million acre Golden Horseshoe Greenbelt has been a success according to a new report card released today by the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance. While the report card gives the Ontario Government an overall grade of "B", ongoing plans to expand and build new highways, critical natural areas in need of protection, and uncertainty around municipal compliance, among other issues, remain areas of concern. The report also signals the shift in role for the Greenbelt Alliance from strictly an "advocate" for protection and expansion of the Greenbelt to an expanded role of Greenbelt "watchdog". FORCE is a member of the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance.

Download the Greenbelt Alliance's press release. The full report card, Greenbelt Report Card: Grading Implementation and Progress in Year 1, is available for download - Report Card 2006

Read media coverage of the Greenbelt Anniversary coverage: Greenbelt grade: Pretty good...Environmental group rates province a 'B' (64 KB) and McGuinty's Greenbelt Initiative a Success (71 KB).


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