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NEWS: Ontario environmental commissioner to release report today

The Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, Gord Miller, will release his 2009/2010 Annual Report later this morning.

Some of the issues we will be looking for in the report include:

1. “The conflicts between the government’s promise to protect half the boreal forest in the Far North, and efforts to develop the Ring of Fire.”

2. “Why beaches on the Ontario side of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario are more polluted than the American beaches.”

3. “Environmental problems posed by aging landfills, and efforts by the Ministry of the Environment to track them.”

4. “Natural-gas power plants, and the environmental assessments they require.”

5. “Which plant and animal species will suffer, and may be lost forever, because of climate change.”

6. “The Ministry of the Environment’s development of new rules for regulating air pollution by heavy industries.”

7. “Development encroaching on provincially-significant wetlands.”

The Toronto Star has reported that, “Miller’s annual report to the Legislature will highlight a slew of problems with garbage dumps, polluted beaches on the Great Lakes, and mining in the northern Ontario ‘Ring of Fire’ region. But the new gas plant (a controversial new natural gas power plant to be built on a flood plain near the ecologically sensitive Holland Marsh) will figure prominently in the environmental commissioner’s examination.”

The 232-page report has now been released and can be read at http://www.eco.on.ca/eng/index.php/pubs/eco-publications/2009-10-annual-report.php.