Join us on Thursday, July 22 to learn about the ongoing province wide uptick in offsetting discussions, and how we in Hamilton can take action before July 31st to better protect our natural features from being "offset". Just fill out this form and the Zoom link will appear below.
Watch the video and take action!
Thanks for registering for our 5th Conservation Matters webinar, ‘From $prawl to Land Back.’ We had a great turnout on Wednesday night and our guests shared valuable insights on how the fight to #StopSprawl connects to the movement for Indigenous rights, sovereignty and Land Back.
We took action together to call on the City of Hamilton to reject developer-driven plans for continued urban sprawl. Then we finished with a lively Q&A and a call to keep taking action to win this fight.
When we work together, we win! Organize to Stop Sprawl.
The City of Hamilton is actively considering expanding its urban boundary right now. Urban sprawl benefits no one except wealthy developers, and it hurts the rest of us by destroying precious farmland and natural areas, locking in car dependence and straining city services. And, underlying all that, is the fact that this is taking place on stolen land.
It’s critical that as many people as possible respond to the City’s current survey about the proposed urban boundary expansion, but many have not received it in the mail. Fortunately, organizations within Hamilton are working to help people overcome this barrier.
Our first speaker on Wednesday night, Nancy of Stop Sprawl Ham Ont, has not only worked to keep people informed about issues related to sprawl, but also worked alongside Wellington Water Watchers to develop an online version of the survey for those that either didn’t receive a copy in the mail, or would like to have their entire family participate. She provided updates about actions against sprawl in the webinar, and gave a step-by-step walkthrough for answering the survey online.
Farmers feed cities
After that, Chris Krucker of Ontario Federation of Agriculture spoke about farmer’s concerns regarding urban boundary expansion. Currently, only 5% of land in Southern Ontario is arable, so we can’t afford to lose more. Remember, farmers feed cities.
Skyler Williams, Danielle Boissoneau, and Makaśa Looking Horse shared important insights on the movement for Indigenous rights and sovereignty
Our final three guests on Wednesday night spoke about the importance of building relationships with water and land. We discussed how far Canada still has to go on everything from Indigenous land title to basic human rights, including access to clean drinking water and safe living spaces. As Skyler put it, "[T]his is our land. We have the right to say no. We should not be criminalized for refusing to consent when developers want to pave over our lands." CONSULTATION ≠ CONSENT
Calls to action! Here’s how you can help.
Building momentum & growing the movement
Thank you all so much for the show of support we've seen so far! Thanks to those who registered and came out to the webinar and to those who shared this event with your community. As of July 1st, the developer trying to build a subdivision on unceded Haudenosaunee territory has officially cancelled construction. Congratulations to those at 1492 Land Back Lane. This shows that direct action works!
We encourage you to continue taking action to make your voice heard regarding urban boundary expansion in Hamilton. Our success with Ancaster Creek Wetlands and headwaters shows that our voices are being heard. Let’s keep the pressure on!
From local fights like Stop Sprawl to climate tragedies like the heatwave and wildfires ravaging the west, more and more people are waking up to the need for collective action on the climate emergency. Can you invite a friend who’s concerned about the climate to volunteer with Hamilton 350? Ask them to join you at our next general meeting on Wednesday, July 7 or check out our welcoming document to get started.
Join us on Wednesday from 7 - 8:30 p.m. EST for our next Conservation Matters webinar!
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with all the information you need to join the session on June 30.
Topics and speakers
Working to stop urban sprawl in Hamilton and surrounding areas
Indigenous rights and defence of water and land
Our movement to conserve and protect nature in Hamilton and beyond is truly gaining momentum.
Thanks to our organized pressure, the Hamilton Conservation Authority decided not to move Ancaster Creek wetlands and headwaters. Then we successfully pushed City Council to approve the motion for a second opinion on the urban boundary question. It's clear that we are making our voices heard. Let's use the tools already available, and learn what more we can do, to defend Indigenous rights, protect farmland and water, stop urban $prawl, and continue to influence matters of conservation in Hamilton and Ontario!
PS - We are actively seeking volunteers to help us organize actions and events, post on Hamilton 350’s social media accounts, and run campaigns like our current one on Conservation Authorities. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re ready to get involved!
Local group Elders for Climate Sanity showed this video presentation at over 30 venues in the Hamilton area before the pandemic disrupted their work. We're glad to host it on our YouTube channel and website so more people can watch and learn from this important session. Please share this page with the people in your life who need to see it. It's up to all of us to educate our communities about the stakes of this crisis and the urgent need for action.
View this email in your browser
Thank you for taking action to help save the Ancaster Creek Wetland!
On June 3rd, just before midnight, the Hamilton Conservation Authority Board, after 5 hours of delegations, presentations, and in-camera (not public) deliberation, denied the permit to destroy and move the Ancaster Creek Wetland!
Where do we go from here?
The organizing team (a coalition of volunteers from Hamilton 350, Action 13, and Stop Sprawl Ham Ont) will be putting together a public debrief of this decision as well as providing comments on the Hamilton Conservation Authority's Draft Offsetting Policy (Available here)
We will make sure you have the information to participate!
Stay in touch!
If you are looking to stay in touch or get more involved before these next steps above, follow each of our member organizations on social media and sign up for our mailing list (click contact on our website).
Action 13 - Community Climate Action in Ward 13 (Dundas and Flamborough) @13forAction on Facebook and Twitter. Email us at 13forAction@gmail.com
Stop Sprawl Ham Ont - A Facebook group full of great local organizing to say no to sprawl
Hamilton 350 - Our contact information can be found at the bottom of this page
Thank you again for raising your voice to protect our watershed!
We hope you can find a way to celebrate - if you're able to, maybe spend some time by the water!
Missed the June 3rd meeting that decided the Ancaster Creek wetland and headwaters fate?
Watch it here!
Thank you to those who have added their voices to the now over 450 citizens calling on the Hamilton Conservation Authority to not allow the Ancaster Creek Wetland to be paved over.
Video now available!
The scheme to relocate the headwaters of Ancaster Creek and its associated wetland returns to the Hamilton Conservation Authority board at their next meeting on June 3. A decision was expected at the HCA's last meeting, but concerned citizens flooded the Conservation Authority with letters of opposition and successfully delayed it. For our May 26 Conservation Matters webinar, we talked about the importance of this ecosystem, the political context of the fight to save it, and the next moves we can take to win.
We had a very engaging discussion with some excellent questions from our audience. The Calls to Action were:
1. Petition: https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/save-ancaster-creek/
2. Write to the Hamilton Conservation Authority Board and tell them to listen to their own staff and concerned citizens and reject the proposal to offset this locally significant wetland! Email Jaime.Tellier@conservationhamilton.ca and ask for your letter to be sent to the board and added to the June 3rd meeting agenda.
3.Write to your Hamilton City Councillor and ask them to take action to protect this wetland now and in the future by rezoning it to Conservation zoning under the city of Hamilton's Zoning Bylaw. Find your city Councillor here: www.hamilton.ca/council-committee/mayor-council/city-councillors
4. Ask Tyler Schultz the acting Assistant Auditor General Commissioner of the Environment to step in and review all wetland offsetting policies and offsetting applications since 2018 to ensure this tool is truly being used as rarely as possible. - more information to come
Check out this Spec opinion piece by Thomas A Beckett regarding the proposed development at 140 Garner Road E (location of Ancaster Creek wetland and headwaters.) Beckett is a resident of Dundas, a retired superior court justice, and the first Chair of what is now know as the Hamilton Conservation Authority
In our fourth webinar we'll provide updates about the movement to protect Ancaster Creek Wetland and headwaters
The webinar will include the following topics:
The importance of water and wetlands is being defended within our city.
In the face of the threat to the wetland and headwaters of Ancaster Creek, people within the city and beyond are rising up to protect our water and wetlands. Over 60 outraged letters sent to the Hamilton Conservation Authority have succeeded in delaying the decision on permitting relocation of the wetland and portion of the headwaters of Ancaster Creek.
Learn more about how this development will effect Hamilton if allowed.
The developers want to build five warehouses and massive parking lots on the agricultural and aquatic lands at 140 Garner Road East. This will damage the wetland and headwaters, the species within them, and eliminate an active farm well-known for its pumpkin patch and other produce.
Receive personal impact statements, and find out how you can help!
We’ll interview Indigenous land defenders, the farm family, the local provincial legislator and Ancaster residents. And we’ll tell you what can be done to convince the HCA board to do the right thing at its June 3 meeting.
Our opportunity to engage this local movement in climate action is growing.
Reaction to the application to have a wetland moved, and it’s headwaters paved over, is creating a successful campaign to protect Hamilton’s environment and urban boundary. Though the application is still to be heard by the Hamilton Conservation Authority, people power has successfully delayed the application, brought the scheme to our attention, and made the HCA very aware that we both understand and will not allow the negative impacts of such a development to occur. Let's continue to work to save the Ancaster Creek Wetland and headwaters, and hold Conservation Authorities to matters of conservation. #conservationmatters
Video now available!
Developers want to replace the headwaters of Ancaster Creek with five warehouses and thousands of parking spaces, plus a replacement wetlands. Last night, the Hamilton Conservation Authority deferred this proposal at the request of the applicant! For months, Hamilton 350 and Action 13 have been sharing stories from across the province which show that when we fight we win! Last night our community added our own win to the map! In the face of over 60 letters sent to the HCA Board about the relocation of a wetland and and stream of Ancaster Creek, the applicant requested the decision about their proposal to do so be deferred to the next HCA meeting on June 3rd! There will now be more opportunities to intervene to protect the wetland and stream in the headwaters of Ancaster Creek. If you were one of the letter writers, thanks for helping to make a difference. If you missed last night's emergency rally or want to pass it on to others, check out this video. It will provide information about the (now deferred) proposal, the difficulties Conservation Authorities are facing under the Ford Government, and information specific to the workings of the Hamilton Conservation Authority.