Turning Spill Penalties Into Trails

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Penalties collected from environmental violations will fund 10 projects to restore and protect the environment — including projects to improve waterway habitat, plant shoreline trees and prevent spills.

Ontario issues environmental penalties to industries that have spilled a contaminant into the environment, or failed to comply with regulatory requirements. The Ontario Community Environment Fund (OCEF) uses the penalties collected, to support environmental improvement projects. Projects are ideally located in watersheds where a violation happened.

Applications from 13 communities are being accepted until November 8, for the next round of OCEF grants. Eligible groups can apply for more than $320,000. Municipalities, schools, conservation authorities, First Nations and Métis communities, and other not-for-profit organizations in those communities may apply for a 2013 OCEF grant.

The Ministry of the Environment issued 16 Environmental Penalty Orders in 2012 and added $165,395 to the OCEF.

Learn more about the program, at the OCEF site.

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