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Causeway Steering Committee members John Everett, Rick Levick, Paula Jongerden (chair), Jan Everett and Peter Carson accepted the award certificate and sculpture on behalf of all committee members.
Simcoe, June 4, 2018: The 2018 Dogwood Award for contributions to Norfolk County’s culture and heritage by a group was presented to members of the Steering Committee of the Long Point Causeway Improvement Project.
“This committed group is the very best in community leadership, support and hard work,” said Melissa Collver, Norfolk’s Director of Heritage and Culture as she presented the award
The 10-year, $2.7 million project was a community-based effort to reduce the negative ecological impacts of the 3.5km causeway linking the Long Point peninsula on Lake Erie with mainland Southern Ontario. These impacts included high levels of wildlife road mortality, particularly of Species at Risk turtles and snakes, and the disruption of the natural hydrological functions of Big Creek Marsh, one of the largest remaining coastal wetlands on the Canadian side of the Great Lakes.
The project began in 2006 and was managed by a Steering Committee comprised of local concerned citizens, representatives of several local community groups, non-governmental organizations and county, provincial and federal agencies. Collectively, these people committed hundreds of hours of volunteer time to oversee this project for more than a decade. Nearly everyone on the committee lived, worked and/or owned property in Norfolk County. Notably, members of the Steering Committee who were employed by government agencies participated as volunteers outside of regular work hours.
Early in the project, it was agreed that the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation (LPWBRF) would act as the principal fundraising and administrative agency on behalf of the Steering Committee.
Because the Causeway is a Norfolk County road, the Committee and the LPWBRF worked in partnership with County Council and staff on all aspects of the project. They also consulted regularly with many regulatory agencies such as the Canadian Wildlife Service that have responsibility for protecting the Big Creek wetland ecosystem adjacent to the Causeway.
“Thanks to the initiative and hard work of these volunteer Committee members, the Causeway Project has achieved tremendous success by reducing reptile road mortality on the Causeway by nearly 80 per cent and restoring three aquatic connections between the Big Creek Marsh and Long Point Bay,” said Collver.
More than 95 per cent of the $2.7 million in funds raised by the Committee came from sources outside Norfolk County such as the federal and provincial governments, a major US conservation organization, other environmental organizations and the private sector. Much of this funding was used to purchase goods and services in Norfolk County.
Collver also noted that work of the Causeway Project Steering Committee has continued and enhanced the long heritage of nature conservation and sustainable development in the Long Point area and Norfolk County. As examples, she mentioned:
Commenting on the award, Steering Committee Chair Paula Jongerden said the group’s work brought to the forefront the concept of our responsibility to Norfolk’s very extensive natural capital and demonstrated moral responsibility to our non-human heritage.
“The true community effort and shared dedication of this group exemplifies the notion of what is possible when we work together around a very important common goal – our natural heritage,” said Jongerden.
By Vincent Ball, Brantford Expositor
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 7:33:58 EDT PM
Tara Carpenter and her seven-year-old daughter Holly plants trees on Saturday on a vacant four-acre site on the west end of Simcoe. Brian Thompson/Postmedia News
SIMCOE – A tree-planting project in Norfolk County on Saturday attracted a lot of people and organizers are delighted with the support the initiative received from the community.
“It was heartwarming to see so many people including a lot of youngsters come out to plant trees,” Tara Carpenter, of the Long Point World Biosphere, said following the event. “We had close to 100 people and the event was made possible by groups working together and it’s great to see that kind of cooperation for such a good cause.
“We planted 4,000 trees and we really needed all the people who showed up to make it a success.”
Several dignitaries including Norfolk Mayor Charlie Luke, Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett and Haldimand-Norfolk MP Diane Finley, also participated in the event.
A number of different species of trees were planted on a 1.6 hectare (four-acre) parcel of vacant Norfolk County land near the end of Luscombe Drive just west of Simcoe. The initiative was part of a national effort by 14 biosphere reserves across Canada to symbolically offset the greenhouse gas emissions caused by transportation to the upcoming international G-7 economic conference in June.
The project’s aim is to plant 100,000 trees across Canada that will sequester nearly 600 tonnes of greenhouse gases as the trees grow.
In Norfolk, the initiative was organized by the Long Point World Biosphere and supported by the Lynn Valley Scouts, forestry staff from Norfolk County and the Long Point Region Conservation Authority. It was also supported by the Canadian government, the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association and the Charlevoix Biosphere Reserve in Quebec where the economic conference is being held.
Several Carolinian tree species were planted on Saturday including black oak, white pine, white oak, red oak, black cherry, bur oak, hackberry and trembling aspen to name just a few.
“This project continues a long tradition of reforestation in Norfolk beginning with the establishment of Canada’s first forestry station in St. Williams in 1908 to more recent efforts by our foundation that collaborated in the planting of more than 1,000,000 trees by the Long Point Region Conservation Authority with financial support from Ontario Power Generation,” Rick Levick, president of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation, said in a statement.
Norfolk Mayor Charlie Luke. Councillor Peter Black, MPP Toby Barrett and MP Diane Finley joined in the planting of nearly 3,000 trees organized by the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation in partnership with Norfolk County and the Long Point Region Conservation Authority.
Apr. 28, 2018 Simcoe, ON: Thousands of tree seedlings were planted on four acres of vacant Norfolk County land west of Simcoe today as part of a national effort by 14 Biosphere Reserves across Canada to symbolically offset the greenhouse gas emissions resulting for transportation to the upcoming international G7 economic conference in Quebec in June. The project’s goal is to plant 100,000 trees that will sequester nearly 600 tonnes of greenhouse gases (CO2 eq.) as the trees grow.
The local planting effort was initiated and organized by the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation (LPWBRF) and the trees were planted by the Lynn Valley Scouts under direction of forestry staff from Norfolk County and the Long Point Region Conservation Authority (LPRCA). Several Carolinian tree species were planted including Black Oak, White Pine, White Oak, Red Oak, Black Cherry, Bur Oak, Hackberry, Trembling Aspen, Kentucky-coffee, Pignut Hickory, Flowering Dogwood, Northern Pin Oak, and Large-toothed Aspen.
Dignitaries participating in a dedication ceremony included Norfolk Mayor Charlie Luke, Toby Barrett, MPP Haldimand-Norfolk and Diane Finley, MP, Haldimand-Norfolk. The participants were provided with refreshments and a pizza lunch for their hard work.
“This project continues a long tradition of reforestation here in Norfolk County beginning with the establishment of Canada’s first forestry station in St. Williams in 1908 to more recent efforts by our Foundation that collaborated in the planting of over 1,000,000 trees by the Long Point Region Conservation Authority with financial support from Ontario Power Generation. ,” said Rick Levick, president of the LPWBRF.
To encourage local citizens to participate in this carbon offset initiative, the LPWBRF is offering a free white pine or white cedar seedling to the first 50 people who apply to become members of the Foundation.
The national tree planting project is a collaboration between the Government of Canada, the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association and the Charlevoix Biosphere Reserve where the G7 meeting will be held. A commemorative plaque will be erected at the site to mark this event.
For more information, please contact: Tara Carpenter (519) 771-0023 or Rick Levick (416) 723-2910
Jan Everett, author and illustrator of her book called “Never Give Up” reads the story to mesmerized students at Lynndale Heights PS, Simcoe. The book chronicles, little Johnny’s attempts to save turtles in peril crossing the busy Causeway Road, Long, Point, ON.
Then, the 300 children at the school practice carrying a turtle across the road when it is safe to do so.
Jan and Johnny intertwine their program with information about the local citizen-driven Long Point Causeway Improvement Project where $2.7 million was raised to build 12 tunnels under the Causeway so turtles can save themselves. As well, the students are told of the benefits of the Causeway being in the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve.
Jan and John crisscross South Western Ontario doing book readings to local schools, cub/girl guide groups & even Tillsonburg’s Turtlefest. Thousands of children and parents have heard the story and saved a turtle over the last 5 years. To contact Jan she can be reached at email@example.com
By Monte Sonnenberg, Simcoe Reformer
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 6:30:44 EDT PM
SIMCOE – Norfolk County is going to help the world’s major economic powers live up to their rhetoric about environmental protection.
Whenever the G7 group of nations gather for a summit, they inevitably have something to say about working together to protect the planet from environmental degradation.
And just as predictably, critics take swipes at G7 members for talking a good game while creating a gigantic carbon footprint travelling to and from these meetings.
In advance of the G7’s 44th annual summit in Quebec this June, organizers have become proactive and are moving to defuse the criticism before it begins.
In partnership with the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association and Global Affairs Canada, Norfolk council this week agreed to plant four acres of forest as part of a symbolic international effort to offset the carbon emissions created by this spring’s summit.
The project involves four acres of marginal land in the Judd Industrial Park in the northwest corner of Simcoe.
Chris Baird, Norfolk’s general manager of economic development and heritage, says the area’s low-lying topography makes it an expensive challenge to develop for industrial purposes. The land has stormwater retention and drainage issues that potential buyers would find unattractive.
“Servicing that land would be particularly expensive,” Baird said at Tuesday’s council meeting.
“It would be a formidable area to develop and is near a (municipal) wellhead protection zone.”
The federal government and the national biosphere reserves association will pay for the trees and the labour required to plant them.
In exchange, participating communities have to provide the land, retain ownership of the land, and maintain the trees for at least 50 years.
The trees planted must be appropriate for the surrounding ecology. The projects must feature an educational component for young people and promote the principles of sustainable logging.
Norfolk County will undertake the project in partnership with the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation.
“This is taking out unproductive industrial land that would be difficult to do anything with,” said Simcoe Coun. Peter Black.
“In return, we’re getting four acres of woodlot for all the right environmental reasons.”
The parcel in question is located at the north end of Luscombe Drive. The Toyotetsu auto parts manufacturing facility on Park Road is located to the east while the Delhi Rail Trail passes to the north.
In his report, Norfolk forestry supervisor Adam Biddle said the project is a good one because the Ministry of Municipal Affairs has yet to approve expanded industrial land inventories in Delhi and Courtland.
Norfolk council approved the expansions to accommodate new investments at Scotts Canada on Highway 59 in Delhi and Titan Trailers on Highway 3 in Courtland.
The ministry has told Norfolk it wants to see industrial land retired elsewhere in the county to accommodate the expansions in Delhi and Courtland. Norfolk has found some industrial land to rezone but not an amount equivalent to the expansions.
Port Rowan Coun. Noel Haydt isn’t enthusiastic about the tree-planting. If Norfolk wants to plant four acres of woodlot, Haydt said the county should do it under the auspices of the Alternative Land Use Services (ALUS) program.
That way, Haydt said Norfolk would collect revenue for providing environmental benefits and not encumber the county with a 50-year covenant freezing the trees in place.
Along with Canada, members of the G7 group of nations include the United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Japan and Italy.
NORFOLK COUNTY, January 31, 2018 – Long Point Eco-Adventures took home the 2017 Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award presented by the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation at the Norfolk County Symposium on January 31st in Vittoria.
The award honours leaders in sustainability whose businesses have made significant differences in the social, economic, natural and cultural environments of Norfolk County. The award is a symbol of achievement and celebrates the accomplishments of community and business leaders who have actively engaged the tourism community to promote and encourage best practices.
A visit to Long Point Eco-Adventures provides guests with a unique experience. They are a fun-loving, outdoor adventure company providing amazing experiences with world-class guides. They encourages both staff and guests to be outside often, be physically active and develop a deeper sense of understanding and respect for nature. Through school-based programs such as nature hikes, guides and students gain a greater appreciation for our own backyards, and how we fit into these ecosystems.
“We are proud to be recognized with this award which is a reflection of the commitment, caring and follow-through of each and every one of our staff. We are proud of and committed to our natural environment and sharing the many experiences of Norfolk County in a responsible way. We also look forward and encourage future sustainable tourism efforts that benefit Norfolk County and bring attention and appreciation to the ecological abundance of our area ”stated Mike McArthur and Dave Pond, owners of Long Point Eco- Adventures.
Staff of Long Point Eco-Adventures accepting the award flanked by project coordinator Patti O’Reilly (left) and LPWBRF Board member Paul Givens (right).
The 2017 Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award was crafted by local artist, Jack Worton, from Long Point. The sculpture is of a Bald Eagle carved from local black walnut on a peach alabaster and black walnut base. Long Point Eco- Adventures receives a year-long membership from the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation and a decorative plaque to display at their property.
The Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award is just one initiative of the Biosphere’s sustainable tourism project in partnership with Norfolk County. Previous winners include, Blueberry Hill Estates, Whistling Gardens and Bonnieheath Lavender Farm. The Long Point Biosphere, together with Georgian Bay, and Frontenac Arch, received an Ontario Trillium Foundation grant to help advance sustainable tourism in each biosphere community through the Amazing Places project visitamazingplaces.ca. For more information about sustainable tourism initiatives in Norfolk, visit www.longpointbiosphere.ca
Reaching forty kilometres into Lake Erie, Long Point in Ontario Canada is the world’s longest freshwater sand spit. How the Point’s endless beaches endure as a natural oasis, here in Canada’s most densely populated region, is a feat that involves more than just your typical environmentalists. This is a story of hunters, farmers, foresters, birders, biologists, and just about everyone else in the Long Point Biosphere Reserve – who have learned from conservation pioneers how to cultivate biodiversity, culture, and an economy, on a foundation of sand.
Looking for a copy of Striking Balance? The Long Point World Biosphere Reserve is currently selling DVD and Blu-ray copies of the entire 8-episode “Season One” of Striking Balance.
At least $10 from each sale goes to support the Biosphere Reserve organization you purchase from.