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LETTER: It's time to make waves, protect our water

'This tremendous bounty of water demands that we be responsible custodians,' says local Green Party official
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MidlandToday welcomes letters to the editor. The following letter is from Erik Schomann, CEO of Green Party Simcoe-North, regarding International Day of Action for Rivers and World Water Day. Send letters to [email protected]


Stand up in celebration! Stand up in gratitude.

Sunday was the International Day of Action for Rivers and is followed quickly by World Water Day on March 22.

In our riding of Simcoe North, we are bordered by Georgian Bay, Lake Simcoe, Lake Couchiching and of course the Trent Severn Waterway. In spring we know the power of such rivers as the Severn, Wye, Sturgeon, Hog, Black, Green, Coldwater and North as they rush and rise through their watersheds to the larger bodies of water.

These rivers feed our treasured wetlands like the marshes of the Wye, Tiny and those under dispute in Ramara. Wetlands filter impurities protect our shorelines from erosion and create a buffer in floodwater areas.

Our fresh waters support agriculture and livestock production in our region, provide drinking water to thousands of people in urban settlement areas and recharge aquifers that ensure that rural wells remain viable. Our shorelines provide habitat without which thousands of plants, animals and aquatic life would not survive.

This tremendous bounty of water demands that we be responsible custodians. We understand that microplastics are a real threat, so reducing our use of plastic is something we each need to consider. 

Tay and Tiny Townships have both committed to being a Blue Community which aligns them with this objective and declares water as a Human Right. So much of the world does not have this blessing. Perhaps we can follow the example set with the Magpie River in Quebec that has been granted legal status, the same legal rights as a person by the local municipality and Council.

We stand with our Conservation Authorities and Severn Sound Environmental Association (SSEA) as they take action to protect our water quality and wildlife habitats. 

Remember the remediation of Lake Simcoe and Sturgeon Bay. Small individual actions can also help to preserve water.

Act, turn off the tap when you brush your teeth or shampoo in the shower, reuse vegetable water to nourish your plants, fix those leaks from dripping taps, and ensure your region has a solid stormwater plan to deal with flooding and prevent rapid waste runoff.

Stand up and take action by letting your government officials know when you feel habitats or freshwater resources are at risk. We must be vigilant, brave, and willing to act to protect our water.

Erik Schomann
CEO of Green Party Canada Electoral District Association for Simcoe-North
Former GPC Shadow Cabinet Critic to the Canada/China File