Conservation authority (Ontario, Canada)

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A conservation authority is a local, community-based natural resource management agency[1] based in Ontario, Canada. Conservation authorities represent groupings of municipalities on a watershed basis and work in partnership with other agencies to carry out natural resource management activities within their respective watersheds, on behalf of their member municipalities and the Province of Ontario.[1] [2]

The 1946 Conservation Authorities Act provides the means by which municipalities within a common watershed can petition the Province of Ontario to form a conservation authority for that watershed to undertake programs of natural resource management. Conservation authorities are established as corporate bodies under the Act.[3] There are currently 36 conservation authorities in Ontario.

Conservation authorities are mandated to develop programs to further the conservation, restoration, development and management of Ontario's natural resources.[3] They carry out programs in natural hazard management on behalf of the Province and municipalities, and may also carry out other programs that serve municipal interests, such as nature education, land conservation and management, recreation programs, and research.[1] Management programs generally occur in lands known as conservation areas, restoration areas or wilderness areas, though not all lands managed are necessarily designated as such.

Conservation authorities regulate development in or near natural hazard areas, watercourses and wetlands. Each conservation authority has a Regulation of Development, Interference with Wetlands and Alterations to Shorelines and Watercourses under the Conservation Authorities Act which conforms to a provincial template regulation.[4] Under these regulations, development is prohibited in areas designated by the regulation unless permission is granted by the conservation authority.

Key areas of Authority activity include:

  • Natural hazard management - Conservation authorities regulate development and other activities in and near natural hazard areas such as shorelines, floodplains, unstable slopes and wetlands. They also do flood forecasting and warning, flood and erosion control, ice management and drought programs, and contribute to municipal land use planning.[1]
  • Environmental protection — Conservation authorities may have programs to protect local ecosystems and contribute to the quality of life in communities throughout the province.
  • Water Resource Management — Conservation authorities carry out research and activities to manage Ontario's water resources on a watershed basis, maintain secure supplies of clean water, and contribute to municipal planning processes.

List of conservation authorities[edit]

Conservation Ontario is the umbrella organization for all 36 regional Conservation Authorities in the Province of Ontario:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Ministry of Natural Resources. ""Conservation Authorities"". Retrieved 8 August 2014. 
  2. ^ "Home page". Conservation Ontario: Natural Champions. 2009. Retrieved 2013-02-15. 
  3. ^ a b [1] Conservation Authorities Act, e-Laws.
  4. ^ e-Laws. "Content of Conservation Authority Regulations under Subsection 28(1) of the Act". Retrieved 8 August 2014. 

External links[edit]