Conservation Halton today released the 2018 Watershed Report Card, which grades the health of our watershed using four key measurements: Forest Condition, Groundwater Quality, Impervious Land Cover Surface Water Quality.
Measuring helps to identify healthy and ecologically important areas which require protection or enhancement.Pollution of streams in the watershed is one of the key issues noted in the Watershed Report Card. Pollutants and soils run off fields, roads and yards during rain or snowmelt, entering streams or being absorbed into groundwater. This has been an ongoing issue in Conservation Halton’s watershed based on several factors, including the amount of impervious land cover in urban areas.
“The Watershed Report Card provides a look at the state of our watershed so residents are aware of their local conditions and also so that informed decisions can be made to ensure the sustainability of our water and land resources,” said Chief Administrative Officer Hassaan Basit. “There are a number of initiatives already being done in partnership with our local municipal partners and community to help maintain or improve the health of our environment. Conservation Halton participated in more than 130 environmental partnership initiatives in 2017, including a major restoration undertaking at Courtcliffe Park in Hamilton as well as other projects, such as Bayview Park in Burlington, Drumquin Park in Milton and Glenorchy in Oakville, to name a few.”
“Challenges such as urbanization and climate change significantly impact the health and resilience of the Conservation Halton watershed. Given the urban nature of parts of our watershed, there are a number of steps we can take to help offset the impacts of development and pollution in our streams, such as low impact development and seeking alternatives to road salt,” added Associate Director Science and Partnerships Kim Barrett. “Some fantastic work is being done in our watershed. Conservation Halton completed 37 floodplain, wetland and watercourse restoration activities in 2017 in collaboration with community partners.”
About Conservation Halton’s Watershed
Conservation Halton’s Watershed is made up of the smaller watersheds of all the streams which enter Lake Ontario, from Grindstone Creek in the west to Joshua’s Creek in the east. Conservation Halton’s watershed management efforts cover the entire area, and are focused within three main watersheds (Grindstone Creek, Bronte Creek, Sixteen Mile Creek), and numerous smaller urban creeks. The watershed includes most of Halton Region and portions of the City of Hamilton, Puslinch Township and the City of Mississauga.
About Watershed Report Cards
Watershed Report Cards are a reporting process which gets scientific information to local decision-makers in watersheds across Ontario. The data generated by monitoring helps us plan for environmental protection and enhancement, both through policies and through better stewardship and community involvement.
The release of Conservation Halton’s 2018 Watershed Report Card is part of a new series of province-wide Watershed Report Cards that provide a snapshot of the current state of watersheds across Ontario. To take a look at the provincial picture, you can find Conservation Ontario’s Watershed Checkup here or the Conservation Ontario Story Map here.