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NEWS: Liberals promise $52 million to clean up the Great Lakes

The Toronto Star reports that the provincial Liberals – who now form the government in Ontario – have announced a $52 million plan to clean up the Great Lakes.

The newspaper notes, “The plan, dubbed the Great Lakes Protection Act, promises to clean up 17 ‘hot spots’, including Nipigon Bay on Lake Superior and the Niagara River among others. Laurel Broten, the Liberal incumbent in the Etobicoke-Lakeshore riding, …also said the Liberals will reduce water pollution, clean up provincial beaches and promote activities on the Great Lakes.”

The Liberal election platform had previously promised $4 million a year over the next four years to clean-up the Great Lakes. There is no direct mention of the Great Lakes in the Progressive Conservative or NDP election platforms. However, an ancillary NDP election document notes their opposition to the proposed shipments of nuclear waste on the Great Lakes. The NDP have also promised a Great Lakes minister and legislation – though not specific – on the Great Lakes.

The newspaper article highlights, “Derek Stack, executive director of Great Lakes United, which advocates for the health of the lakes, said called the Liberal proposal ‘a good move for sure. But it’s party politics, and we’ll have to wait and see.’ Stack said cleaning up hot spots, some of which are laced with heavy metals, will be expensive and require a long-term commitment.”

The provincial election in Ontario is on October 6.