Skip to main content

NDP tables motion to protect health of Lake Simcoe ahead of World Water Day


A motion presented at Queen's Park aimed at safeguarding Lake Simcoe falls on the eve of recognition of World Water Day.

Sandy Shaw, the NDP Official Opposition Critic for Environment, Conservation, and Parks, held a press conference alongside Claire Malcolmson, the executive director of the rescue Lake Simcoe Coalition, urging the government to swiftly implement a protection strategy to address the deteriorating health of the lake.

According to Shaw, Lake Simcoe accumulates significant amounts of stormwater runoff, impacting the water's health. Phosphorus in the runoff creates algae, which she said throws the entire system off balance.

Shaw's motion outlines three key steps: enforcing the 2008 Lake Simcoe Protection Act to reduce phosphorus loads to 44 tonnes annually by 2030, assessing the environmental impacts of the proposed Bradford Bypass and associated urban sprawl on water quality, and initiating construction of a phosphorus reduction facility by year-end.

The conservative government has committed to funding the plant; however, Malcolmson said that's only fixing one to two per cent of the problem.

"We do know that development in the watershed is projected to be really heavy in the decades ahead. And we know that sprawl, the movement of earth, and the loss of farmlands and sometimes wetlands and forests... all of those things negatively impact the lake. So we need to look at the whole picture," said Malcolmson.

Malcolmson also raised concerns about rising salt levels in Lake Simcoe, which, combined with high phosphorus levels and warming water temperatures, exacerbate algae outbreaks. She urged the province to tackle this issue alongside phosphorus reduction efforts. Top Stories

Stay Connected