Studies, Documents on
Sensitivity of OUR AREA done by professionals:
to the first study on this area it was decided in 70's that this area is suitable for the
development. This decision was made without knowing how significant this area is to the
relation of streams with spawning grounds for trout and salmon, Second Marsh in Oshawa and
QUALITY OF WATER in general. Extensive forest (swamp) covered this area and helped to hold and slowly
release the cool underground water called groundwater to the streams. This area is located
within the Lake Iroquois (glacier lake) Beach and its soil
composition and forest cover functions as groundwater recharge for streams. Harmony Creek
in Oshawa was described in 1977 as having poor fisheries and poor water quality due to the
effect of urbanization. It shouldn't have happened but it did. Is this the fate in store
for Farewell and Black Creeks, and others in our municipality? For this reason we are
trying to protect the remaining creeks and with your help maybe even Harmony could become
***See the new
MNR Wetland Mapping Evaluation***
For your information here are some
opinions from different studies:
"... proposed development will represent a
significant loss in the supply of clean water to these streams" Studies differ on
composition of soil, on underground water flow. Some say that whole area is a common
water basin; others that a number of underground springs and seepage zones
are found throughout the area. "Even with
stormwater management ("ponds"), " the hydrological regime will be altered
by development" "Large forested areas were cleared prior to approval of official
CLOCA 1994: "This area is not suitable for this degree of urbanization."
CLOCA 1996: "Woodlots
should be designated "Greenspace". Ecological function should be considered when
assessing the quality of a woodlot. Woodlots larger than 30 ha and 300 m deep should be
protected, and development setbacks should be provided for smaller woodlots to promote the
regeneration of the forest core."
Environmental Impact Study,
All of us were hopeful that this study will become a benchmark
for further development because of the damage to the ecosystem done by previous
"The planning agencies in the Courtice
Urban Area are strongly recommended to consider the protection of existing north-south
linkages and the establishment of east-west linkages and corridors in order to connect the
fragmented habitats that exist within the Study Area...The planning of a network of
east-west corridors linking the presently fragmented woodlots should take place prior to
the future approval of proposed developments within the Study Area. Approval of
development proposals should be dependent on the incorporation of greenspaces consisting
of local native species."
Some of the wooded areas were
identified as provincially significant wetland. Black/Farewell Wetland Complex still
exists but is threatened by future development. It will be a great loss. Hopefully,
Harmony Conservation Area will be preserved. "While we recognized that some of the sensitive forest has been cleared,
we feel that there are other sensitive attributes ...they perform a hydrological function
in feeding baseflow to Farewell Creek"
"...there are still important linkages...Harmony Creek Valley, Farewell Creek Valley
...Trulls/Courtice Woods and Black/Farewell Wetland Complex..."
Provincial policy and local and regional Official Plans all
conclude that groundwater recharge areas should be protected and provincial policy is even
asking for the demonstration that the development is not going to affect these sensitive
lands. There is no proof of that in any studies because we know very little on groundwater
issues and because it is hidden underground it is overlooked, undermined. Only the
watershed/subwatershed study could let us know how much and what kind of development
should be allowed here. "...there
is no way that an individual development plan can explicitly address cumulative
impacts." "...development planning in the absence of subwatershed planning
cannot address cumulative impacts. These impacts relate to: flooding, erosion,
temperature, baseflow, nutrient enrichment in a lake, bacteria loading to a beach".
"...municipal plans require stormwater management and erosion and sedimentation
control plans be prepared in the context of subwatershed plans..."
Only the provincial government can see a clear picture
and the OMB decided that a comprehensive watershed study has to be done, but there is no
money for the study and development is continuing regardless. That is another reason why
we have to try to do as much as we can for our own protection. There is much more
documentation (about a 3m high pileof it) and it is with our town or Region.
Stormwater Management (retaining ponds, stormwater,
Marshal Macklin Monaghan Ltd.: Stormwater Management Practices
Planning (SMPP), 1994, pg. iii: " We have recognized that single
objective-oriented solutions usually cause more problems than they solve. This recognition
has led us to the ecosystem approach"
Taking into consideration the whole area, and
not just single applications as it is done for Courtice North "...for
development through Watershed and Subwatershed Planning. The degradation of our
water resources is not the result of one influence, such as stormwater, but it is the
result of the lifestyle which we have chosen."
"Stormwater Management"- water quality control practices
(Best Management Practices- BMP), pg. 166: "
development planning with the absence of watershed planning (in our case) cannot address cumulative impacts:
flooding, erosion, temperature, baseflow, nutrient enrichment, bacteria
"Stormwater Management, approved in 1980,
(which is going to be used in Courtice North)
both flooding and erosion
have been actually agravated by the Courtice Stormwater
Management Plans.", Report No.: PD-17-95, pg. 9, CLOCA comments.
"Opportunities to retrofit the existing uncontrolled
strormwater outfalls should be investigated. Otherwise, the cycle of channel erosion,
sediment deposition, lateral channel widening, loss of bank vegetation and subsequent
debris obstruction will continue." , ECOPLANS, E.I.S.
1996, pg. 50.
Statement in E.I.S
1994 for Region that Harmony Creek was already damaged, the water quality and fishery is
poor due to the urbanization , pg 33 should give us a hint that we should be cautious in
developing Courtice North. Nothing concrete has been done so far by any government.
Everybody agrees that there are concerns, but
? Does anybody care about our health by
improving the water quality in Lake Ontario - our source of drinking water?
"Level 1 Protection", pg. 171: "Example of type 1
habitat, include (in our case)
- spawning areas for brook trout
- groundwater recharge areas in coldwater streams
It should be noted that the Department of Fisheries and Oceans
will not accept compensation for Type 1 habitat. Therefore, development will be restricted
if Level 1 Protection can not be provided."
It would be
interesting to find out what was done or what can be done for this area by the Federal
government. The fisheries in Courtice North were already damaged (as per E.I.S. 1994 for
Region). You can contact our MP Alex Shepherd or Ivan Grose who until last year resided in
It was agreed by all that the Watershed study should be done, but there is no
money for it and without it further development and especially Water Management Plans
(retaining ponds which will become the responsibility of our municipality) should be