Nearly six months after it was submitted, the Federal Government has publicly released its report, The Recommendations for the Future of Oshawa Harbour, dubbed the Crombie Report. In 2007, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities Lawrence Cannon, appointed former Minister of Health David Crombie as an independent representative to help sort through the "contradictory and sometimes hostile perspectives" of the parties vying for control of the harbour's future.
The Port of Oshawa has served many purposes in its 156-year life. Since 2002, the Port has been off-limits to community members, when the Oshawa Marina and Yacht Club was closed due to environmental concerns.
The Crombie Report has been designed to recommend the future makeup of the port, and answer the question of who should take control - the city, or the commercial/industrial interests.
In the final report, the recommendations follow three basic concepts:
Ownership of the port and surrounding lands be vested in the City of Oshawa
The land must be shared by all stakeholders (industrial, residential, retail and recreational) in a mixed-use environment
Any profits made by the sale of land should be put back into the Port for further improvement of the waterfront.
The Gifford Farmlands should remain as a "valuable physical barrier" for the environmentally sensitive area of the Second Marsh, which the report strongly states must be guaranteed safety from any environmental pollutants or future developments.
(Note: Public comments for the FarmTech ethanol facility, proposed for Gifford Hill, must be submitted to the Ministry of the Environment. Also, the federal government announced the environmental assessment process for this facility is now underway).
The full text of the report is available on the Transport Canada website.
In addition to serving as a MP and former Federal Minister, David Crombie has also been credited as one of Canada's first environmentally conscious politicians. Crombie was a leader of grassroots pro-neighbourhood reform in Toronto when he was elected mayor of the city in 1970, bringing with him celebrated urban thinkers such as Jane Jacobs. In addition to serving as Minister of Health, David Crombie has also served as Ministry of Indian and Northern Affairs, and Secretary of State and Minister of Multiculturalism. He most recently headed the royal commission on the redevelopment of Toronto's waterfront.
Read Lake Ontario Waterkeeper's comment to David Crombie here
Farmtech's Submission to the Ontario Environmental Registry
Federal Government's Notice of Environmental Assessment on Farmtech