The Great Lakes Protection Act Alliance – representing six environmental groups – is delighted that Ontario Minister of the Environment Jim Bradley re-introduced the Great Lakes Protection Act today as the new government’s first legislative agenda item.

“We’re thrilled that the Great Lakes are a priority for the government,” said Sarah Winterton, Acting Executive Director, Environmental Defence. “Improving protection for the source of drinking water for 80 per cent of Ontarians and protecting our shorelines and beaches is the right thing to do, and we urge all parties to work together to pass a strong Act.”

The bill was first introduced June 6, 2012, but died on the order table when the legislature was prorogued. Next, the bill will be debated, and amendments considered by an all-party committee.

The Great Lakes Protection Act Alliance looks forward to working with all parties to support the passage of a strengthened Great Lakes Protection Act that improves water quality, wetlands, beaches and coastlines, biodiversity and recreational opportunities, and sets clear targets that will be reported publicly.

“Improved water quality in the Great Lakes is crucial to our health,” said Anastasia Lintner, Staff Lawyer, Ecojustice. “It is important that we see a strong commitment to work together to keep toxic chemicals from getting into our water in the first place.”

“We welcome Geographically Focussed Initiatives so that better protection measures can be put in place for the undeveloped and pristine shoreline areas there are left on the Great Lakes,” said Mary Muter, Chair, Great Lakes Section, Sierra Club.

About the Great Lakes Protection Act Alliance: The Great Lakes Protection Act Alliance Steering Committee includes members of Canadian Environmental Law Association, Ecojustice, Environmental Defence, Great Lakes United, and the Sierra Club of Canada, Ontario Chapter.