Environmentalists are anxiously awaiting a potentially precedent-setting verdict in a fierce conflict over a proposed quarry on protected Niagara Escarpment lands south of Collingwood, not far from the picturesque Blue Mountains.
The case, which began with Walker Industries’ initial application nearly a decade ago, is now before a judicial review, with a decision expected in the coming months. If approved, some warn it will tip the balance toward those who wish to exploit the riches of the escarpment — and undermine the protections put in place 30 years ago to preserve it.
“Protection of the escarpment began because of the growth of the aggregate industry,” said Ruth Grier, former NDP environment minister and local resident. “This is one example that shows there are huge loopholes in that protection.”
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