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You can help save Ontario's species at risk!

In January, we told you about the government’s proposals to water down its own Endangered Species Act (ESA).

We recently found out that the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) has added more details about these proposals and has extended the deadline for public comments. The new deadline for you to comment on MNR’s recommendations is February 25.

Ontario Nature has looked closely at MNR’s proposals and they are alarming. MNR is recommending that, in many cases, industrial operators – logging, construction, hydro, pits and quarries – no longer be required to obtain permits before starting projects in places where at-risk wildlife can be found.

Instead, these kinds of operations would proceed with minimum government input. Moreover, developers would be asked only to “minimize” the impact of their activities, a much weaker version of the current requirement to ensure that conditions for an endangered species are improved.

Please join Ontario Nature in opposing these exemptions to the protections required by the ESA. Even if you sent in comments earlier, the government needs to hear from you again.

Your comments can be submitted through the Environmental Registry - EBR Registry # 011-7696. The new deadline for public comments is now February 25. For more information, and to post comments online, click here.

Ontario Nature is asking that:

  1. Exemptions to the Endangered Species Act must NOT be industry wide. Exemptions should only be allowed under rare circumstances.
  2. Keep the existing requirement to obtain a permit BEFORE construction or logging takes place.
  3. Retain government and public oversight of activities that harm endangered species and their habitat.
  4. Make those who will benefit from the permit pay for it – this way the government can recover the costs of permitting.

Help us push for the protection of endangered species and their habitats by submitting a comment. Be sure to include the EBR reference # 011-7696. Remember, the deadline has now been extended to February 25.

Yours for nature,
The Conservation Team

To read an op-ed by Dr. Anne Bell, our Director of Conservation and Education, about the exemptions to the ESA, please click here.
To read the editorial about the ESA in The Toronto Star, click [here]
For Ontario Nature’s summary analysis of the proposed exemptions, click [here]
For Ontario Nature’s detailed analysis of the proposed exemptions, please e-mail Dr. Anne Bell at
Please send this e-mail to someone who shares your passion for nature.
Please consider supporting Ontario Nature’s conservation campaigns with a donation. Thank you.
The form below lets you easily submit your comments to the Environmental Registry. You can send in the letter that appears in the box or write your own comments. (Note: the government gives more consideration to a personalized submission than to a form letter. So if you have the time, please add a personal touch to the form letter below.)

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