Put clean water and prime farmland before aggregates

For Immediate Release
October 20, 2012 
Put clean water and prime farmland before aggregates
(Toronto): GPO leader Mike Schreiner is renewing his call for the Ontario government to put clean water and prime farmland before aggregates. 
Schreiner is encouraging people to help stop the Melanchton Mega Quarry by attending Soupstock on Oct. 21. Hosted by the Canadian Chefs’ Congress and the David Suzuki Foundation in Toronto’s Woodbine Park, Soupstock is a celebration of local food and clean water. Proceeds will support the farmers and community groups fighting the mega quarry.
“We have to put taters before craters,” says Schreiner. “We will lose our ability to feed ourselves if we continue to destroy prime farmland.”
Only 5% of Ontario’s land mass is suitable for growing food, and Ontario has already experienced a loss of 636,000 acres of farmland since 2006. It is not sustainable to lose 127,000 acres of land per year, an area larger than the city of Toronto.  
The proposed mega quarry will destroy a further 2,400 acres of prime farmland and blast 20 storeys below the water table. 
 “A country that can’t feed itself is as insecure as a country that can’t defend itself,” says Schreiner. “I will continue to oppose the quarry, and advocate for policies that will support profitable family farms, preserve prime farmland and protect clean water.”
The Green Party of Ontario is committed to:

  • Revising the Aggregate Resources Act to create incentives for more efficient use of aggregates, aggregate recycling, sustainable mining practices and stronger site rehabilitation efforts. 
  • Requiring a full Environmental Assessment for aggregate applications that meet the Ministry of Natural Resource’s definition of a mega quarry.
  • Changing the Ontario Policy Statement to protect Class 1, 2, 3 and 4 farmland. Making preservation and protection of our farmland, water resources and natural heritage a top priority in Ontario.

Mike Schreiner will be available to speak with the media at Soupstock.
For interviews contact: 
Becky Smit
Cell: 647-830-6486
Email: beckysmit@gpo.ca