The politics of the Oak Ridges Moraine in southern Ontario, Canada, have centred on the question of how to preserve this extensive natural resource that is increasingly threatened by human modification. Although preservation of the moraine was first suggested in the 1940s, and intermittently over the subsequent fifty years, it was not until 1991 that the issue achieved prominence in political discourse. For the ensuing decade, use of the moraine was hotly contested between the interests of local residents, developers and environmentalists.
On December 14, 2001 legislation was enacted, along with a provincial land use plan for the Oak Ridges Moraine. However, it seems clear that regulation, alone, is insufficient to preserving these valuable lands. Implementing the plan has required "political will, an engaged and informed public, and... broad based private and public partnerships." Monitoring of the Moraine project by citizens and environmental organizations, along with credible ecological information are essential to its continued preservation.
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