Protecting Farmland and Environmentally Sensitive Areas
Today we will be talking about Protecting Farmland and Environmentally Sensitive Areas. We will look at what this topic is all about, why we should care, some key information, and a solution for this issue. Also we will look at how solving this issue will benefit us.
What is the issue about?
This issue is saving usable land that we need to survive. There are lots of fertile and crop growing land in Canada, which is not being used to its extent. By solving this issue, Canada will import less food and grow more which will save Canada lots of money and the environment. Mississauga, where we live is also affected by this issue. Mississauga, just like many places continues to grow day by day. This makes Mississauga and places around it continue to demolish greenery for space that is not necessarily needed. We are just taking away land where we could have grown fresh local food. When we protect environmentally sensitive areas, we are benefited in many ways.
Why is the issue a concern to Mississauga/Ontario?
Mississauga and the area's around it were great farmland. Many years ago there was many acres of farmland, but as more people started to settle here, much of this farmland had to be taken down for housing, industrial and commercial use. The biggest concern in Ontario is to protect the land around it that still could be farmed on. Ontario and many other places in Canada should not expand more because this available land could help us in the future and now.
Canada's Protected Areas
As of 2013, 10.4% which is 1,036,645 km of Canada's terrestrial area and 0.9% which is 51,485 km of Canada's marine territory has been recognized and protected. Over the last 20 years the amount of land Canada has protected has increased over 50%. People in Canada realized that keeping natural land is important for sustainability and future. The lack of locally grown food has made this issue bigger and has caught attention of many people. The graph on the left displays the amount of area protected in Canada from 1990 to 2013.
The Greenbelt - A Great Solution
Ontario's Greenbelt act was created in 2005 and is a great solution to protect environmentally sensitive areas and productive farms. It also is the solution for fresh air, clean water, thriving economy, and most importantly local food. Over 5,500 productive farms are protected by the green belt. The Greenbelt covers 1.8 million acres of land in Ontario, that is bigger than P.E.I, which is only 1.4 million acres! As with saving the land, wildlife is also protected, 535,000 acres of lakes, wetlands, river valleys, and forests. About 78 at risk species are being saved. The goal with Ontario's Greenbelt is to save land where we can grow local food instead of importing food which costs a lot of money and is not very healthy for us. Also we are saving land to have nature around us, with urban sprawl we are taking down our natural environment which we need to survive.
What can other places do?
Urban sprawl is destroying farmland and the environment everywhere. Ontario's Greenbelt is a great example of how to perverse our environment. Other places could pass an act just like Ontario's Greenbelt or even start a campaign that protects farms and land to make people aware of this issue. We think that places should start doing this now because it will be easier now then in the future when most of the farms and greenery is gone.
Here is video which displays what we are doing with Ontario's Greenbelt. You will see the beautiful landscapes, wildlife, and farmland which are being protected for us and future generations to see.
Ontario's Greenbelt Just Got Bigger!
Conclusion - Protecting Farmland and Environmentally Sensitive Areas
Therefore, this is why we should protect our farms and environmentally sensitive areas. If we support this issue now then we will be benefited in the future. By saving farms, we will be able to obtain locally grown food which is better than eating imported food. Saving the environment around us will surly benefit us. If we take down the environment we won't be able to sustain ourselves, we won't have wildlife do the many actions which keep our environmental system running. Overall by supporting this issue our planet, people, and economy (profit) will benefit.
By: Arjan Cambo, Jasman Shahi, Musaddique Gangat