Ontario Provincial Policies on Resource Management

[Excerpted from the Ontario Provincial Policy Statement, 2005]

2.0 Wise Use and Management of Resources

Ontario’s long-term prosperity, environmental health, and social well-being depend on protecting natural heritage, water, agricultural, mineral and cultural heritage and archaeological resources for their economic, environmental and social benefits.

Accordingly:

2.1 Natural Heritage

2.1.1 Natural features and areas shall be protected for the long term.

2.1.2 The diversity and connectivity of natural features in an area, and the long-term ecological function and biodiversity of natural heritage systems, should be maintained, restored or, where possible, improved, recognizing linkages between and among natural heritage features and areas, surface water features and ground water features.

2.1.3 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted in:

a. significant habitat of endangered species and threatened species;
b. significant wetlands in Ecoregions 5E, 6E and 7E; and
c. significant coastal wetlands.

2.1.4 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted in:

a. significant wetlands in the Canadian Shield north of Ecoregions 5E, 6E and 7E;
b. significant woodlands south and east of the Canadian Shield ;
c. significant valleylands south and east of the Canadian Shield;
d. significant wildlife habitat; and
e. significant areas of natural and scientific interest

unless it has been demonstrated that there will be no negative impacts on the natural features or their ecological functions.

2.1.5 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted in fish habitat except in accordance with provincial and federal requirements.

2.1.6 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted on adjacent lands to the natural heritage features and areas identified in policies 2.1.3, 2.1.4 and 2.1.5 unless the ecological function of the adjacent lands has been evaluated and it has been demonstrated that there will be no negative impacts on the natural features or on their ecological functions.

2.1.7 Nothing in policy 2.1 is intended to limit the ability of existing agricultural uses to continue.

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