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Environmental challenge of ‘beach closures’ could be removed from impaired list

Another environmental challenge identified for the Bay of Quinte is ready for a status change to “unimpaired”.

The challenge of ‘Beach Closures’ has met scientific criteria for four area beaches. Now, the public is being asked for input. Is the environmental challenge Beach Closures ready for a status change to unimpaired? A 30-day public comment period will run from Tuesday, April 3 – Thursday, May 3, 2018.

The Bay of Quinte Remedial Action Plan (BQRAP) assessed four area beaches: Centennial Park at Deseronto, Kingsford Mills on the Salmon River, Frankford Park on the Trent River and Centennial Park at Northport. Currently, these beaches are meeting or exceeding criteria regarding beach postings and contaminant sources.

In 2016, the environmental challenges on ‘restrictions on dredging activities and fish tumours and other deformities’ received acceptance of their status change.

Currently, BQRAP is awaiting official approval on three other challenges related to fish and wildlife populations and habitat. After all 11 environmental challenges have completed the formal status change process, the Bay of Quinte can be formally removed from the ‘Great Lakes Areas of Concern’ list.

“These are exciting times for the Bay of Quinte Restoration Council,” said Glenda Rodgers, co-chair of the BQRAP Restoration Council and CAO of Lower Trent Conservation. “After several decades of rehabilitating the bay we are starting to change the status of a number of the environmental challenges. Now, it is important to ensure strategies are in place, so the bay doesn’t back-slide to conditions that required a remedial action plan in the first place.”

Restoration council will review and address all comments received through the public comments period. Next, a final report will be sent to Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change for review. At this stage, additional technical review or specific work can be requested, or the report will be approved. Once approved, the reports are sent to the governments of Canada and Ontario to seek formal concurrence on the status change.

“Today, the Bay of Quinte is a healthy and vibrant ecosystem,” said Terry Murphy General Manager of Quinte Conservation, and co-chair of the BQRAP Restoration Council. “The improvements to water quality make it possible to announce the environmental challenge ‘Beach Closures’ can be considered restored. It’s a testament to the dedication and hard work of our federal, provincial, and municipal partners, as well as, industry, agriculture, the public and local conservation authorities.”

The final report and supporting information can be found on the BQRAP web site – www.bqrap.ca. Email comments about whether you support or do not support the recommendation to change the status of this environmental challenges to ‘unimpaired’ to – smidlanejones@bqrap.ca

The deadline for comments is: Thursday, May 3, 2018

The Bay of Quinte Remedial Action Plan is in partnership locally with Lower Trent Conservation and Quinte Conservation

Filed Under: News from Everywhere Else

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