Coalition forms – February 12, 2014 Wellington Times

February 15, 2014 Borys Holowacz Latest Posts

Article by Rick Conroy

Coalition[1]The Regent Theatre has contributed the entire proceeds from the screening of Jennifer Baichwal’s film Watermark to legal defence fund of the Prince Edward County Field Naturalists(PECFN).

PECFN is awaiting a decision from an Ontario Superior Court as to the fate of a proposed industrial wind turbine development on Crown land at Ostrander Point. Gathered for the cheque giving are left to right Borys Holowacz, Sheila Kuja, Sandra Dowd, Elizabeth Cowan, Myrna Wood from PECFN with Betsy Matthews and Peter Blendell of the Regent Theatre Foundation.

Peter Blendell added that The Regent needs continuing community support to enable their organization to sponsor events like ‘Watermark’.

Resistance efforts gel against the industrialization of South Marysburgh

South Marysburgh has resisted the blight of industrial wind turbines upon its landscape, so far. For more than a decade, developers have threatened to invade the rugged open spaces on the County’s south shore to construct scores of massive towers, each soaring more the 400 feet—despite the clear and documented risk to migrating birds, nesting animals, natural habitat as well as the well-being of the humans that must live in the midst of this industrialization and cope with the destruction of property values.

Many folks have been part of this resistance. And many groups have stood up against developers.

Now six such groups have agreed to form a coalition—combining efforts in a coordinated way. They initially came together as a coalition in order to make a formal request that PEC’s South Shore, the last undeveloped section of the north shore of Lake Ontario, be recognized as a Core Natural Heritage Site in the County’s Official Plan. Now they are working together to fend of the current threat.

South Shore Coalition members include the Hastings and Prince Edward Land Trust, the Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory, Save Our Lighthouses, the Prince Edward County Field Naturalists, the South Shore Conservancy and the Point to Point PEC Foundation.

The Hastings and Prince Edward Land Trust is a non-profit volunteer organization which purchased the 490-acre Miller Family Nature Reserve in 2012 with donations from many local individuals and the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Ontario Heritage Trust.

The Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory is caretaker of the PEC South Shore Important Bird and Biodiversity Area and is undertaking an update of the migratory bird species and breeding species at risk found there.

Save our Lighthouses is a heritage organization working with the Land Trust and Bird Observatory to conserve four local lighthouses at Point Petre, Prince Edward Point, Main Duck and False Ducks Islands.

The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists initiated the Important Bird Area (IBA) at Prince Edward Point. It is the founding member of the bird observatory and contributor of research on wildlife habitats across the south shore.

The South Shore Conservancy (SSC) was established to protect the biodiversity of the County’s South Shore. SSC strives to ensure that only appropriate development occurs in the area so that its natural state sustains indefinitely the habitat and species found there.

The goal of Point to Point PEC Foundation is to protect the IBA, wetlands, unique habitat, migration routes for birds, bats, monarch butterflies, and the biodiversity. It also aims to renew the efforts to establish a Marine Heritage Conservation Area, including the water around Timber, Sweatman, Main Duck and Yorkshire Islands.

“One of the most valuable and extraordinary features of Prince Edward County’s South Shore is the fact that it contains wetlands that are pristine,” said Amy Bodman, of PECFN, encouraging a broader effort to protect the region. “These wetlands include the provincially significant Big Sand Bay, Salmon Point, the South Shore Marsh, the South Bay Coastal Wetland, Soup Harbour and Black River Swamp. The South Shore also contains many varieties of rare and unusual plants due to the presence of alvar habitat, which is a globally imperiled ecosystem.”

“A lot of the people may look at the south shore and see it only as scrub land that isn’t doing anything, because few people live there and it’s not good land for agriculture. It looks to people like “unproductive land.” But in fact, that land is doing a lot for us, just as it is.”

Original article can be found here 


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