June 13, 2013 17:34 ET

Canadians Can Speak for Wildlife at Public Hearings

WWF Supports Growing Movement for Modern and Scientific Approach to Water Levels in Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 13, 2013) - With the future of wildlife in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River threatened by outdated governance, WWF welcomes the next step on the route to implementing a modern, science-based water management approach. Today, the International Joint Commission announced their decision to schedule public hearings on the plan that will give life to this modern approach; a plan we believe will bring more sustainable, effective management to these important water bodies.

Plan 2014 (previously called Plan Bv7) is designed to balance the needs of all users in the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence system. Since this modern, scientific approach was introduced in January 2012, it has received strong support, with over 9,770 expressions of citizen support, as well as backing from businesses, and environmental, conservation and sportsmen organizations. Public hearings will offer engaged citizens a valuable chance to share their perspectives on why they support the plan. For more details on the hearings, please visit: http://www.ijc.org/en_/news?news_id=114.


"Securing a healthy future for globally iconic waters like the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario is critical, and implementing Plan 2014 would be a landmark decision for large scale freshwater ecosystem restoration. It would be an important step toward what is needed across Canada: a goal aimed squarely at ensuring healthy waters across the country and a clear, consistent way to measure progress towards that goal."

- Tony Maas, Director, Freshwater Program, WWF-Canada

About Plan 2014

Fifty years of regulation forcing unnatural flow conditions and water levels has caused damage to the Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River environment and the livelihoods and well-being of the people who rely upon it. The approach contained in Plan 2014 shows that benefits for the environment, the regional economy and property owners can go hand-in-hand.

Plan 2014 represents an innovative approach to water level regulation in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River, working with nature as a partner, rather than an adversary. The plan was formulated over the course of ten years with the input of more than 180 stakeholder representatives, experts, and scientists from government agencies, academia, NGOs and industry in New York, Ontario, and Quebec.

To learn more and view testimonials, please visit: http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/areas/greatlakes/policy/plan-bv7.xml

Other organizations supporting public hearings include:

• Save The River - http://savetheriver.us/

• The Nature Conservancy - http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/newyork/placesweprotect/centralwesternnewyork/index.htm

• Citizens Campaign for the Environment - http://www.citizenscampaign.org/

• Audubon New York - http://ny.audubon.org/

About WWF-Canada

WWF is creating solutions to the most serious conservation challenges facing our planet, helping people and nature thrive. www.wwf.ca.

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