Essex – The Essex Region Conservation Authority (ERCA) will continue to focus on climate change and phosphorus reduction, as confirmed by its 2019 budget priorities. “Canadians have identified climate change as the greatest threat to our future, according to a recent report by The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. We will continue to work with municipalities and others to research regional vulnerabilities, impacts and best practices,” explained Richard Wyma, General Manager.
The 2019 budget was unanimously approved. It totals $7.7 million, which includes a levy contribution of $3.2 million, or $10 per capita, well below the Ontario average of $16.42 per person. “Our goal is a sustainable future – one where people will want to live, work, and invest in,” said ERCA Chair Irek Kusmierczyk.
Continuing to work with partners to reduce phosphorus run-off which can result in Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) is another top priority. “ERCA is an effective delivery agent in the Lake Erie Action Plan for reducing phosphorus,” Wyma adds. The 2019 budget includes federal funding to support agricultural BMPs and associated monitoring and science. ERCA will also work with the University of Windsor to research innovative solutions for filtering phosphorus before it reaches our Great Lakes.
The budget also includes funds to plant over 60 acres of forest and prairie, rehabilitate a 70 acre wetland on the Canard River; and create new fish habitat on the City of Windsor’s Pêche Island. Increasing citizen science opportunities, maintaining and expanding conservation areas and trails; and adding capacity for customer service, human resource support, and to respond to a significant increase in requests for permits and plan review are also included.
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.
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Danielle Breault Stuebing
Director, Communications & Outreach Services
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