Essex– Moving forward a regional collaborative to address climate change vulnerabilities is a top priority for the Essex Region Conservation Authority (ERCA) in 2019. “Building on our recent Climate Change Workshop, we will research regional vulnerabilities, impacts and best practices; and lead the development of a Regional Climate Change Plan with municipalities to address vulnerabilities, identify implementation priorities, and potential funding supports,” explained Richard Wyma, General Manager, during the presentation of the 2019 draft budget.
The budget also includes funds to connect over 60 acres of upland habitat (forest and prairie) to improve linkages between remaining habitats, build ecosystem resilience, and benefit water quality. Increasing citizen science opportunities, maintaining and expanding conservation areas and trails; and adding capacity to respond to a significant increase in requests for permits and plan review are also included, as well as additional customer service and human resources supports.
ERCA works in partnership with residents, municipalities, the Province of Ontario, Government of Canada, and international agencies to increase natural area coverage through tree planting and habitat restoration, improve water quality across our watersheds and our Great Lakes, protect people and property from flooding and erosion, and further our understanding of the environment through science and education.
The 2019 budget totals $7,708,571, which includes a total levy contribution of $3,238,667, or $10 per capita. Fee for service, federal and provincial grants and donations represent the $4.5 million balance of the budget. ““Our goal is a sustainable future which improves our local environment and helps create an enhanced community identity we can all be proud of, and a more vibrant economy that can set this region ahead of others – one where people will want to live, work, and invest in,” Wyma says.
For more than four decades, Essex Region Conservation has been sustaining and enriching the environment of the Windsor-Essex-Pelee Island region to ensure it is the Place for Life.