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How federal MPs are helping to protect Lake Simcoe

Recent call for proposals for freshwater protection initiatives is part of federal 10-year, $650-million fund; deadline for submissions passed on March 22
Officials met in Georgina March 18 for a call to action to get proposals to protect freshwater bodies like Lake Simcoe.

The federal government recently put out a call asking for projects to help support freshwater ecosystems, including Lake Simcoe.

Newmarket and Aurora MPs, along with community leaders, encouraged community groups to apply for funding for five freshwater ecosystem initiatives and the EcoAction Community Funding Program. The deadline to participate was March 22.

“No cute slogans,” Newmarket-Aurora MP Tony Van Bynen said at a news event March 18 in Georgina. “Just a real commitment to the environment and to future generations."

The federal government said projects chosen will implement regionally relevant actions to restore water quality and ecosystem health to water bodies like Lake Simcoe as part of Canada’s Freshwater Action Plan, which is providing $650 million over 10 years starting in 2023.

Georgina Mayor Magaret Quirk thanked the federal government for putting funds toward Lake Simcoe.

“We need to continue our collective efforts to ensure Lake Simcoe’s long-term health for generations to come,” Quirk said.

The government has encouraged local groups and organizations to get applications in to create a positive impact for the local watershed.

“I am very pleased that our government is providing funding to local organizations to clean up and protect Lake Simcoe,” Aurora-Oak Ridges-Richmond Hill MP Leah Taylor Roy said. ”Protecting Lake Simcoe and all of Canada’s freshwater is not an option. Water is Life. We must clean up the damage already done and ensure that all decisions respect the integral role that water plays.”

She added that development must be in areas that do not risk the health of freshwater systems.

“All levels of government working together can ensure that the Indigenous knowledge regarding water is respected and that we protect and restore our waterways for us all and for future generations.”