Quarry Impact Slideshow

 Major Issues, News, Quarries  Comments Off on Quarry Impact Slideshow
Nov 012013

A brief slideshow highlighting some of the impacts of the Dewdney Mountain Farms potential quarry.

This proposed quarry threatens the peace and quiet that many of us enjoy on a regular basis.

The proposed quarry will be 180m from Provincially Significant Wetland. It is not taken into consideration as it is 60 metres out of the assessment area.

Who is protecting our water, land, air, nature and our way of life?

Download the slideshow.

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The Land Between Documentary Airs on TVO

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Sep 082013
The Land Between

Watch the visually stunning 3-part series that tells the story of the changing relationships of peoples with this landscape- from the First Nations, to First Settlers bringing us to today’s ways in which we value the land and the challenges we face to steward this important region.

To purchase your copy of the DVD visit the Land Between store. http://www.thelandbetween.ca/store.asp

If you are showcasing the documentary in your community, we would like to be involved! We will provide expert presenters and DVDs for sale at the event. Contact us at tlb@thelandbetween.ca or call 705-457-4838.

The Land Between Documentary Series Trailer

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Trent-Severn Waterway (TSW) — NPLRA, AGM July 27, 2013

 Major Issues, News, Trent-Severn Waterway  Comments Off on Trent-Severn Waterway (TSW) — NPLRA, AGM July 27, 2013
Aug 012013
Trent Severn Waterway

There were many issues facing the TSW last year, staff lay-offs, changes to lock operations, First Nation settlement, worries about water management and flooding, that we are struggling to address and understand. After MP Barry Devolin tabled a Private Members Bill C-530 last month asking for change in governance of the TSW I decided to look briefly into the history of the TSW for guidance.

Built in the 19th century, during Ontario’s logging boom, it was built to open up the interior of the province, to promote agriculture, lumbering and to be used for industrial and transportation purposes to create economic prosperity. Upon completion Lake Ontario had been connected with Lake Huron trough 836 km of navigational waters with about 32 Km of man-made channels, 45 locks and dams. A few years after the completion of the TSW the Welland Canal (1932) opened which could handle much larger ocean going ships and the Trent became mainly obsolete for commercial purposes.

However it had created thousands of hectares of prime waterfront properties and had enormous recreational possibilities.

Originally the TSW was the responsibility of Transport Canada.

This changed in the 1970’s when it was transferred to Parks Canada (PC). At the time this probably made sense since it was more of recreational than commercial value. The TSW became the largest national historic site under the governance of PC.

For many years now PC has been criticized for its antiquated management of the TSW. Today $23.6 bill is the estimated market value of waterfront properties and the TSW generates $1 bill in economic activity each year (2009), Ontario sport fishing industry brings in $300 mill in tax revenues. Tourism is the chief industry in our area.

Fast forward to 2005, the election of Bruce Stanton, now MP for North Simcoe. As a former resort operator Stanton lobbied successfully to put the state of the TSW back on the government radar. In 2007 the federal minister of the Environment appointed a six-member panel to review all aspects of the TSW. 2008 The report on the future of the TSW was published: “It’s all about the Water” with 26 complex recommendations.

  • The panel asked for $270 mill over 10 years and some estimated that it would take $400 mill to ensure the future of the TSW.
  • Following this report the government committed $83 mill over a 5-year period (ending 2014).

Parks Canada allocated most funds to infrastructure replacement and repairs:

I.e. Bolsover Dam replacement at Lock 37 which is under way now or Hastings Swing Bridge replacement (County RD 45) as well as Bobcaygeon Lock 32 inspection and repair.

$7.5 mill were allocated to water monitoring equipment and about $29 mill to boosting the operating budget.

Last year, 2012:  Parks Canada announced $29 mill in budget cuts due to the federal governments deficit reduction action plan.

Citizens have voiced severe concern about these cuts and their economic impact.
Concerns for:
Water management affecting drinking water, fish population, navigation, archaeological discoveries,
Lock operations,
Economic impact on tourism,
User Fees

The organization Voices for the Trent-Severn Waterway, established 2008, is clearly concerned about a “sustainable financial future” for the TSW and tries to serve as an advisory board to our politicians.

Most importantly Voices is asking for a 5/10-year vision for the TSW with the input of all stakeholders.

Our local MPs have held several round table meetings.  The latest was hosted by MP Barry Devolin in Fenelon Falls and was attended by local business owners, tour operators, association members and our councilors.

What I took away from it was that our Government now views the comprehensive study: “It’s all about the water” as a “sitting” document, too expensive to follow up?

Infrastructure improvements are more likely to happen after Ottawa was forced to review all its capital assets after a piece of concrete fell of a Montreal bridge – legal, human costs.

All in all I have not heard a clear vision for the TWS.

Parks Canada is looking at the TSW as a National Historic Site while many of us are looking at it as a driver for the local economy and would like more input in the political decisions.

Finally, June 11, 2013 all these consultations have prompted MP Barry Devolin to introduce a Private Member’s Bill in the House of Commons calling for the creation of an independent Trent-Severn Water Authority that would assume all responsibilities for water management and canal operations and be given an expanded mandate to foster economic activity along the waterways.

The full text of Bill C-530 is available at:

The “Coalition for Equitable Water Flow” (CEWF) representing the interest of approx 40,000 residential property owners since 2006, has already followed up with a letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper and 4 pages of amendments to Bill C-530.

Even though the political process is slow, our economic realities are changing and change needs to happen.

Our communities are taking action:

Fenelon Falls improvements to the lock facilities are a success.

Lakefield is planning to revive the waterfront through commercial leases for a Heritage Building, Residences with Commercial Outlets, Eateries.

Bobcaygeon built additional dockage, which NPLRA supported by sending a letter to Bobcaygeon Chamber of Commerce.

And last years statistics show that the traffic on the TSW up from 123,959 (2011) to 129,658 boats in 2012.

FOCA Newsletter Summer 2013

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Jul 312013

Lake Stewards Newsletter

FOCA Newsletter Summer 2013

The latest edition of the FOCA Newsletter is here! Find out about:

  • winners of the 2012/13 FOCA Achievement Award
  • updates about the Lake Partner Program and new cyanobacterial (blue-green algae) monitoring project
  • FOCA Hot Topics updates: Great Lakes, ELA, Severe Weather, Fisheries Act, Algonq



 News  Comments Off on ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING & BBQ!
Jul 152013

The Board of Directors invite you to attend the


SATURDAY JULY 27th 9:00 am
At the Lawn Bowling Club
87 Dunn St., Bobcaygeon. ON

Please Join Us to:

    • Catch up with the events over the year
    • Meet other members and supporters
    • Renew or complete your membership for 2013/14
    • Find out about the issues we’ve been dealing with re LOCAL QUARRIES and Aggregates, Water Quality and the Trent-Severn Waterway

Leora Berman, author of “The Land Between”

Then join us for a Barbecue….

Agenda and Speaker details to come.

Please plan to attend and support us with your membership for 2014.
Help us to keep up the pressure on our Council to bring Good Governance to local Aggregate issues!

County made motion to accept… NO ONE KNEW!

 Major Issues, Quarries  Comments Off on County made motion to accept… NO ONE KNEW!
Jun 092013

Report of June 5th Meeting of Peterborough County Council… With nothing listed on the agenda Dewdney Quarry OPA #41 amendment app. motion made to accept.

Peterborough County Council

Peterborough County Council

Without any indication that it was going to be discussed, not on the agenda and only a verbal notice picked up by our astute member who was there, the County of Peterborough motioned to approve the OPA #41 Dewdney Mountain Farms Ltd. Quarry application amendment. At the Council meeting 60 days ago a decision was delayed in order to allow time to get legal advice, and also to clarify the status of the Duty to Consult with the Curve Lake First Nations according to their Treaty.

Here is the report:

Peterborough County Council meeting Wednesday June 5th 2013

Peterborough County Council meeting June 5th 2013

As you all know, the First Nations were to meet with the Peterborough County planning department on May 16th, that was postponed until May 31st.The County agenda has to be posted by Thursday prior to the Council Meeting. To make sure this was on the agenda, someone, and I would guess Bryan Weir had to have the Clerk, Sally Saunders, put this on the agenda to make sure it could be addressed at Council.

Due to the fact that they didn’t have anywhere to put it on the agenda, she put it under ‘staff reports’, verbal only, with the recommendation to receive it.

I notified the Chief at Curve Lake, who is away this week, but she let me know there was going to be representation in the gallery. Three representatives from NPLRA were there, and representation from Pirates Glen, as well as many Curve Lake residents.

The Council Meeting was long and drawn out, and I do believe that after the Warden served former Chief Keith Knott with a certificate of recognition, they thought we would all leave.

So, staff reports came up, and Mr. Weir read a 5 minute report of his meeting with Curve Lake last Friday. Deputy Warden, Joe Taylor made a motion to pass OPA 41, just as we had thought, and Councilor Whalen seconded it.

Councilor Scott McFadden, spoke quickly to the fact that this was not the proper way to do this. The CAO had to interrupt and agree that the Warden needed to get the resolution removed from the tabled decision before proceeding. The tabling was removed, and Councilor Gerow agreed with Councilor McFadden. As well, he wanted to know if they should have it in a written letter from the Chief, as they had done for all their meetings, and anything left would be part of either an OMB or site plan and licensing with the MNR. Councilor Mitchell agreed to an extent.

The motion was still on the floor to make a decision and Councilor Mary Smith made a motion to table the decision once again until the next Council meeting, with a proper posting in the agenda. This way it would let the public be aware, otherwise they would have not known that this resolution was being dealt with and then passed.

Councillor Windover was very excited to second the motion to pass, but Councillor Whelan beat him to it.

So, it will be brought back this month and I really hope we have a show of people there. We are probably not going to stop this thing, but it is nice to see  Council take a proper route, and not pass something quickly that has so much public interest.

Regardless, Mr. Ritchie, the proponent,  is still living at the camp, he has Maple Leaf Mulch semi’s starting at 6:30 a.m., and neither our CBO or the minister of Aggregate are doing anything about it. (See ” Charlie’s letter” below) Just for everyone’s information, it is approximately July 25th that is the 180 day decision date. At anytime now, Mr. Ritchie could apply to take this to OMB, but he obviously is looking for County’s blessing. Our rezoning OMB, will only start once the OPA 41 is decided on. If Council approves it, it only takes 1 appeal and it will in fact be put together with our rezoning appeal. The OMB is waiting patiently on this decision too.

Please, let’s pack this County Council meeting is 26th
at 9:30 am in Peterborough County Council Chambers
470 Water Street Peterborough, ON K9H 3M3



Sign and send this Open Letter to our Councilors
The NPLRA is not the only one worrying about what is going on. We feel others should read Charlies letter. It is being reprinted and distributed with his permission. NPLRA is not endorsing what he is saying but making this available for your information.



No hope of rolling back waterway cuts — Peterborough Examiner

 Major Issues, Trent-Severn Waterway  Comments Off on No hope of rolling back waterway cuts — Peterborough Examiner
May 312013
Peterborough Lift Locks

A group of business owners, local tourism industry representatives and municipal politicians met with the head of Parks Canada and Environment Minister Peter Kent in Ottawa on Thursday to encourage them to rollback cuts to the Trent-Severn Waterway.

They returned without much hope for changes to service levels season, said Trent Lakes Mayor Janet Clarkson, who led the trip from Buckhorn to Parliament Hill.

“We did a lot of talking. Maybe somebody listened,” she said Thursday.

Trent Lakes Township chartered the bus that took 21 people to Ottawa.

The group met with Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MP Barry Devolin for about 45 minutes. During that time, Kent dropped by for about 10 minutes.

“The one commitment we got from (Kent) is that he said he’ll come down and take a tour of this end of the Trent,” Clarkson said.

When the group sat down with Parks Canada CEO Alan Latourelle later in the day, it learned there’s more service cuts than just during the shoulder seasons in the spring and fall, Clarkson said.

“They’re cutting back in July and August as well,” she said.

Instead of having crews at all locks, Trent-Severn Waterway is using roving teams that move between locks to let boat traffic travel through the system. It’s a cost-cutting measure. Devolin has said those cutbacks are just for the shoulder season when there’s less traffic, that the service would be ramped up for the busy summer period.

Clarkson said Latourelle indicated that’s not the case — the roving teams will be used for some of the locks during the summer.

“We’re going to have people bunching up and bunching up,” she said. “The boats are just going around in circles, there’s no place for them to tie up.”

Clarkson said the group presented suggestions such as implementing a boat licence sticker program that would charge $25 per sticker per year, which would be similar to vehicle licence stickers, as a way to raise more money.

And the group urged the government to start a national advertising campaign for the Trent-Severn Waterway similar to marketing that it has done for other national parks, Clarkson said.

“Is there any will in the federal government to make this thing survive at all?” she said. “They’ve slashed and burned the budget for tourism.”


Peterborough Examiner

The Land Between

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Apr 302013
The Land Between

“The Land Between is a mosaic of unique spaces including small connected lakes, remarkable rivers, rare alvars, fens, rocky barrens, meadow marshes, woodlands, and scattered settlements. It has a fascinating history. It is a place of natural splendour and rich cultural heritage.

The Land Between is an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise. The goal of The Land Between program is to enhance the environmental, cultural and economic health and vitality of the region.”


Result of Delegation to County: We Get 30 Days!

 Major Issues, Quarries  Comments Off on Result of Delegation to County: We Get 30 Days!
Mar 092013
Dewdney's Cave

We took your concerns about the Dewdney Farms Quarry application and re-zoning to the Peterborough County Council Meeting for a final kick at getting someone to listen. Here is the summary. 

March 6th 2013 delegation to Peterborough County

….. Rubber-stamped it was not!

Members and associates of the NPLRA should be proud of the presentation Ross and Roger made Wednesday to the Peterborough County Council about issues surrounding the rezoning for the Dewdney Mountain farms from rural to industrial/aggreggate for the quarry. Council members appeared to be engaged and interested in the NPLRA’s message of concern.

Despite the time constraints, Ross and Roger made powerful statements about the NPLRA’s major points of concern:

1: The MNR overlooked the existence of the Dewdney caves, in-spite of its well documented location within 400 metres of the area of blasting.These caves could be the hibernation location of an endangered species of bat, which would require an ANSI study by the MNR to establish. When asked, the MNR stated in a letter it had no interest at this time.

2. In the reports to Council, there was no mention of the more than 500 folk that showed up at the June 23rd 2012 public meeting in Bobcaygeon. It only referred to the 28 speakers at that meeting.

3. With 335 pits and quarries in operation in the whole area and 4 in application stages, neither the MNR nor the local Council has any idea of the amount of tonnage permitted annually on the roads. The four pending applications are for unlimited tonnage! It was emphasized that we desperately need a cumulative haulage impact study.

4. Only 6 cents a ton is paid by the operators to the local municipalities for road repair, none by Crown Land operations. The Province gets .50 (fifty cents)/ton. The operators get $100-$140/ton on average profit.
Operators should be paying considerably more. Taxpayers should NOT be paying for wear and tear on the roads. The operators, including the Province in the case of being an operator should be paying.

5. Residents are seeing their property values decline, taxes increase, a high risk of adverse impact on surface and groundwater quality, interference with threatened,  endangered species and habitats, increased traffic congestion, road degradation,  road -safety concerns, increased air pollution, greenhouse gas emission due to increased truck traffic, impact on tourism resulting to adverse impacts on local and regional economy and increase level of noise and dust.

6.  Aboriginal rights may be affected by this decision, treaties are constantly being negotiated. Have the First Nations at Curve Lake been consulted?

All these issues show the inadequacy of the existing study methods and that the full information is not getting through to the decision makers.


Council members had questions and showed concern for the issues. Although the NPLRA was not questioned directly but through Iain Mudd, of Landmark Association Ltd.,whose full report was presented after the Delegation,( and is featured with the agenda), there was good discussion on several of the issues:

Cavan Monaghan Deputy Mayor Scott McFadden lead the discussion about the Caves, saying he was not comfortable with the fact that the MNR had not visited the site before making the decision that they ( the caves) were not significant. As such he would not approve passing the application.

Several of the Council members agreed with Scott and a discussion ensued, ending with the decision to defer the re-zoning decision for 30 days to give the Council a chance to address the issue with the MNR.

North Kawartha Reeve Jim Whelan wanted council to approve the application saying that the studies had all been done and approved. He said this was a red herring.

Deputy Mayor of Smith-Ennismore – Lakefield Township, Andy Mitchell, commented that he was in agreement that the Quarry operators should be paying more for usage of the roads. There were several sounds of agreement to this statement.


NPLRA’s purpose was to demonstrate that full and proper information was not getting to the decision makers, which could have flawed subsequent decisions. While this does not meet our hopes of better management and control of the Quarries at this time, this action to delay their decision comes as a huge encouragement, and shows that the County listens to and can hear our concerns.

The Aggregate Resources Act must be updated.

Our presence at the Peterborough Council meeting was noted by Warden Murray Jones. We had about 30 people there in a seating area of only 20! More chairs were brought out for us. This was good support from NPLRA members and associates as it was held in the day, in the middle of winter and In Peterborough!

Well done and thanks to everyone who showed up!

Quarry decision delayed over caves fears — Peterborough Examiner

 Major Issues, Quarries  Comments Off on Quarry decision delayed over caves fears — Peterborough Examiner
Mar 072013

County council wants more information on a network of caves near a planned quarry in Trent Lakes Township, about 45 kilometres north of Peterborough, before it gives a necessary planning approval for the venture.

Council decided Wednesday to delay a decision on the official plan amendment application for the Dewdney Mountain Farms Ltd. project in Trent Lakes (formerly known as Galway-Cavendish and Harvey).

It wants the Ministry of Natural Resources to answer questions about caves that are near the proposed site of the quarry.


Peterborough Examiner