October 11, 2012 - BREAKING NEWS: Scientific facts and evidence have prevailed as Nelson's proposal to expand quarry operations into Mount Nemo have been dismissed. Read the complete decision to dismiss the expansion proposal here.
Aggregate has been pulled from the Niagara Escarpment at Mount Nemo since 1952. The existing Burlington Quarry is now approaching the end of its life. Hoping to continue to extract two million tonnes of material from the area each year, Nelson Aggregate Company purchased the property south of the existing quarry and applied to continue quarrying there. The existing quarry is 218.3 ha in size. After repeated revisions to its proposed footprint, the new excavation would cover 42 hectares. The proposed expansion would extend the life of Nelson’s Mount Nemo operation for approximately 15 more years to 2025.
Before this expansion can proceed, Nelson Aggregate requires a variety of approvals and licences from the provincial government. These include an amendment to the Niagara Escarpment Plan, Niagara Escarpment Development Permits, amendments to the Official Plans for the City of Burlington and Halton Region, and a Class A Licence under the Aggregate Resources Act to remove more than 20,000 tonnes of aggregate from below water every year.
To determine whether the relevant provincial bodies should issue these approvals, a Joint Board of the Environmental Review Tribunal and the Ontario Municipal Board is holding a hearing. Lake Ontario Waterkeeper objects to quarrying on the Niagara Escarpment. Nelson should not be granted a Class A licence to quarry below water in an area where vital water resources are already impacted by development. We have asked the Joint Board to deny Nelson Aggregate’s application to expand the Burlington Quarry, so that the area can be protected and restored.
The Joint Board hearing has been in the preliminary stage since 2008 and will officially begin on November 17th, 2010. Lake Ontario Waterkeeper is a Participant in the hearing, which means that we submitted a statement, can present our position orally to the Joint Board, and can attend and report on the hearing. To ensure that anyone interested can follow the hearing’s progress, we will be covering it live so check back often!
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