Emily Stewart 0

Evaluate Wetland Threatened by Approved Arena Complex at Trent U!

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*** In signing this petition you are stating your support for a full evaluation of the wetland complex that will be impacted by the arena ***

Details below:

The plan to build an arena that will impact unevaluated wetlands on Trent University's campus, has been approved by the City of Peterborough. While it is not a legal requirement to assess wetlands for provincial significance, Trent University and the City of Peterborough should step up and properly evaluate the wetland, OR treat the wetland as provincially significant, as recommended by the OMNRF.

Indeed, the lack of attention to wetlands and wetland evaluation is a concern, but there are many more. They include: the filling in of a wetland, the conversion of a large meadow and forested area to over 500 parking spaces, the interruption of surface water systems, the loss of hydraulic connectivity, and the placement of this high traffic facility within a matrix of natural areas and significant wildlife habitat.

Of particular concern are the Trent Wildlife Sanctuary and the Archaeology Centre Wetland Nature Area, which support many wildlife species including Species at Risk. They also provide the community with an invaluable natural retreat, supporting our mental and physical well-being.

To compensate for infilling the natural wetland, the development plan includes the construction of a “man-made wetland”, a practice known as biodiversity offsetting. The scientific literature highlights the limitations of such projects, identifying that they rarely meet conservation objectives. Instead, biodiversity is generally lost and the function of ecosystems impaired. In Ontario, there is no provincial policy support for biodiversity offsetting.

Finally, while the proposal will “replant trees” it will degrade and replace existing natural ecosystems (i.e. forests, wetlands, and meadows) with an extensive development, have significant effects on the natural flow of surface and ground water, and reduce wildlife connectivity. Wildlife habitat will be lost and degraded.

This approach is unacceptable and environmentally irresponsible. We are calling for full evaluation of the wetland and wetland complex, which extend across the site and well beyond its boarders.

Our goal in creating this petition is to hold both the Trent administration and City of Peterborough accountable to well-established conservation principles - they need to do better.

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