Provincial Policy Progress

Over the last seven years, the GIO coalition and its members have been successfully promoting green infrastructure across Ontario. A great deal of policy progress has been made in that time period — but there is still much to do!

Progress to Date

2011

The Environment Commissioner of Ontario’s 2010/2011 Annual Report

  • Titled ‘Engaging Solutions’, includes a section on ‘Recognizing the Need for Green Infrastructure’ (Section 3.6) as a result of GIO’s EBR submission to update the definition of infrastructure.

2012

Great Lakes Strategy

  • Includes numerous references to the need for green infrastructure/low impact development in order to protect great lakes water quality.

2014

Updated Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) includes green infrastructure

  • PPS Green Infrastructure Definition: natural and human-made elements that provide ecological and hydrological functions and processes. Green infrastructure can include components such as natural heritage features and systems, parklands, stormwater management systems, street trees, urban forests, natural channels, permeable surfaces, and green roofs.

2015

Ontario’s Climate Change Strategy includes “Build Green Infrastructure” action 

  • One of four action items under the mitigation goal of “A Prosperous Low-carbon Economy with World-Leading Innovation, Science and Technology.”

Great Lakes Protection Act

  • The Act means that Ontario will have to report regularly on its efforts to protect the Great Lakes.

Coordinated Land Use Plans Review: Advisory Panel Recommendations

  • The Provincial review of the Growth Plan and associated land use plans (such as the Greenbelt Plan) engaged an advisory panel that made key recommendations, many of which included green infrastructure

2016

Ministry of Environment and Climate Change – Low Impact Development Guidance  

  • MOECC is in the process of updating its stormwater guidelines to include low-impact development. An interpretation bulletin from February 2015 clarifies that the ministry’s existing policies and guidance emphasize an approach to stormwater management that mimics a site’s natural hydrology as the landscape is developed. The general approach: “Control precipitation as close as possible to where it falls.”

Other Relevant Policy Progress

Our Steering Committee