ONTARIO BUSINESSES SEND UNIFIED MESSAGE OPPOSING GREENBELT DEVELOPMENT, BILL 23
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday December 20, 2022
More than seventy businesses across Ontario led by a number of B Corps have come together to call upon Premier Doug Ford to repeal Bill 23, More Homes Built Faster Act, and protect the Greenbelt.
These companies represent a wide variety of sectors, including manufacturing, agriculture, technology, education, trades, retail and professional services. They are concerned that the Act removes and weakens environmental protections; diminishes the role of Ontarians in land use planning and decision-making and places the burden of the cost of growth-related infrastructure on the municipal tax base. The Greenbelt consists of two million acres of protected farmland and green space with an annual economic impact of $9.6 billion and provides over 177,000 full-time jobs to Ontarians (Greenbelt.ca)
The letter states:
- We acknowledge and appreciate that Ontario needs more housing, but there are other options such as increasing urban density and building homes on land that is not protected.
- With many Canadians now feeling the effects of rising food costs, and the need for local food security, keeping farmland protected is crucial.
- The adverse effects of climate change are affecting Canadians. Destroying natural areas that help mitigate flooding and other climate related natural disasters will exacerbate climate related events.
- The best businesses in the world, large and small, have embraced Environmental and Social Governance and understand that protecting the environment is good for the planet and good for business. We expect the same from our government.
- We urge you to repeal Bill 23 and keep all of the Greenbelt protected.
Jim Phillips, CEO of Copernicus Educational Products Inc. says “Bill 23 is like taking an axe to a quality control system that was created to protect our environment and its citizens. Removing protected land from the Greenbelt is irresponsible and a sign of an unpredictable government.”
Court Desautels, CEO of the Neighbourhood Group of Companies says "If Bill 23 continues as planned and the Ford government removes 7400 acres from some of the most diverse and fertile land in Ontario, we will look back at this event as one of the most tragic environmental disasters this province has ever seen. We simply cannot let this happen."
Some of the companies on the list are B Corps, companies that are certified to be in business as a force for good.
Copernicus Educational Products Inc. and Northern Village Inc., B Corps who initiated this campaign, believe that it is important for the business community to have a voice in how the province grows, which includes taking a stand on what is important to the communities we live in. Other companies that have signed the letter can be found at: https://blocalontario.com/initiatives/support-greenbelt