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Oak Ridges Moraine conservation a growing success due to $17 million in conservation and protection projects

Wednesday, March 15th 2006 12:07:03pm

Foundation accepting 2006 funding applications to protect habitat and wildlife on the Oak Ridges Moraine in the Region of York

(King City, November 7, 2005) The Oak Ridges Moraine Foundation (ORMF) is currently accepting proposals for projects that preserve and protect the environmental integrity of the Oak Ridges Moraine in the Region of York.  The ORMF website, www.ormf.com, is a source of useful information about the moraine, current projects and the Foundation’s grant criteria.

Executive Director of the ORMF Michael Scott observed, “The ORMF has just passed a significant landmark – $17 million in funding for new conservation and protection projects on the Moraine. To date, the ORMF has provided $5.5 million for 65 projects and leveraged an additional $11.5 million in matching private, public and in-kind donations.”

ORMF funds have contributed to more than 3,000 acres (1,214 hectares) of land protection through acquisition, conservation easements and native tree and shrub plantings. In addition, more than 15,000 acres (6,070 hectares) have been protected through stewardship projects, such as stream rehabilitation, wetland creation, livestock diversion, prairie restoration and natural heritage inventories.

In the Region of York, the ORMF has funded 11 projects totaling $501,287.  Some of these projects include:

• Rouge Watershed wetland creation
• Rouge Valley Foundation – Community Resource Centre
• Acquisition of property in Happy Valley (King Township) and York’s Regional Forest
• Reforestation
• Installation of 12 regional Oak Ridges Moraine road signs

The Oak Ridges Moraine Foundation was created on March 11, 2002, with an initial grant of $15 million from the Province to support Moraine activities.

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Contact: Mike G. Scott, ORMF Executive Director @ 905-833-5733

The Oak Ridges Moraine is one of Ontario’s most prominent ecosystems. It is a geological ridge of land up to 300 metres in height that runs parallel to and about 60 km north of Lake Ontario. It extends about 200 km from the Niagara Escarpment in the west to the Trent River in the east. More than thirty of the rivers that drain into Lake Simcoe and Lake Ontario have their headwaters on the Moraine. The Moraine is a source of drinking water for more than 250,000 people.

The Oak Ridges Moraine Foundation has been created to help protect and restore the environmental integrity of the Moraine. It is a registered corporation and has representatives on its Board of Directors from the environmental community, conservation authorities, municipalities and the provincial government. The Foundation operates primarily by funding the work of others and offering leadership and co-ordination of Moraine-wide activities where appropriate.