Ontario has hundreds, if not thousands of dams that are unsafe and no longer serving any useful purpose. These dams are blocking fish passage, degrading water quality, fragmenting habitat, threatening species at risk and sensitive cold water species. ORA is working to take them out. Check out this excellent overview of the problems with hydropower:
GUELPH –On September 10th, with the sounds of a jackhammer hammering in the background, the Hanlon Creek monitoring weir was removed within Preservation Park in the City of Guelph. The motivation behind the removal of the weir was multi-purpose. The project objectives were to remove the weir to improve the ability of fish to migrate upstream, while simultaneously lowering the upstream water level, which will narrow the channel and result in cooler stream temperatures.
It’s done – the barrier to fish passage has been removed.
I’m happy to report that the Hanlon Creek Weir Removal Project was completed today!! The middle portion of the weir has been removed and the stream bed rehabilitated. Brook Trout are now able to access an additional 3.6 km of coldwater habitat and the stream has been made more resilient to a warming climate.
Warm thanks to all our volunteers and supporters for your generosity and caring!
A great article in the 8 September 2019 edition of the Guelph Today:
Community fills 3-tonnes of sandbags to kick start the Hanlon Creek Weir Removal project
We offer a Badge of Honour to those valued supporters who have contributed to the Hanlon Creek Weir Removal Crowdfunding Campaign – Phase II. A BIG THANK YOU to all our supporters: Continue reading
MEDIA RELEASE: For Immediate Release: 24 July 2019
Only 1 week left in the Hanlon Creek Crowd Funding Campaign
GUELPH – We need your help to raise enough dollars to move forward on the Hanlon Creek Weir Removal Project. So far, we have raised $2,725 but we must reach our goal of $10,000 by the 31stof July to schedule decommissioning for September of this year.
We have two incredible perks to be offered at the close of the Campaign when a 1st and 2ndplace winner will be drawn. For every $25 donated a ballot will be entered into the draw in the donor’s name. For more details or to donate check out our campaign page here: https://chuffed.org/project/hanlon-creek-weir-project-phase-ii Continue reading
GUELPH – The Ontario Rivers Alliance (ORA), Trout Unlimited Canada (TUC), Canadian Wildlife Federation, and four other partners are announcing Phase II of the Hanlon Creek Crowd Funding Campaign. We are looking to raise $10,000 by the 31stof July. The funds are required to pay for the weir modification and river rehabilitation work, scheduled to take place in September of this year. “We have a very short time-line and need your help to reach our fundraising goal”, said Alex Meeker, Ontario Provincial Biologist with TUC.
Jeff Graham, P.Eng., President, GSS Engineering Consultants Ltd., prepared this comprehensive table reporting on the cost comparisons between dam repair/rebuild vs. decommissioning. These are actual completed projects, showing the before and after. Check out the table: Continue reading
On September 28, 2018, you requested, on behalf of the Ontario Rivers Alliance and other partners, that the City be required to prepare an individual environmental assessment for the replacement of Riverside Dam. I am taking this opportunity to inform you that I have decided that elevating the project to an individual environmental assessment is not required.
MEDIA RELEASE: For Immediate Release: 28 February 2019
Hanlon Creek Weir Project – Guelph
GUELPH – The Ontario Rivers Alliance (ORA) has only a few days left on a crowd funding Campaign looking to raise $2,050 for the Hanlon Creek Weir Project. We need your help to reach our goal by the 4th of March! Donations will go towards the design work and permitting in this critical first phase of the Project.
An amazing original acrylic painting by Sydney Campbell, will go to the person making the largest donation. All donations are welcome and will help move this important project forward. Please go to this link to take part: https://chuffed.org/project/hanlon-creek-weir-project
Hanlon Creek is a coldwater Brook Trout stream, with its headwaters rising within the City of Guelph, and the Hanlon Creek weir was built in 1972 to measure stream flow. The Grand River Fisheries Management Plan identified issues and management strategies to improve the coldwater tributaries of the Speed River Basin, which includes the Hanlon Creek.
The problem is that the Hanlon Creek weir is a barrier to fish passage, it interferes with sediment transport and causes upstream ponding which results in increased surface water that warms in the sun. This warming of the creek has negative impacts on the Brook Trout that require clear, cool waters below 24°C.
ORA and partners have a plan to mitigate this issue by removing a centre portion of the weir to lower the upstream water level. This will narrow the channel, resulting in cooler stream temperatures and improved Brook Trout habitat. Most importantly, it will improve the fishery’s resiliency to climate change.
Our partners in this project are the Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry, Grand River Conservation Authority, Trout Unlimited Canada, City of Guelph, in consultation with the Grand River Fisheries Management Plan Implementation Committee. Each partner has taken on a portion of the responsibility for bringing this Project to completion. ORA has taken on the challenge of raising the amount required for these crucial first steps of the Project.
“ORA is reaching out to the public at this critical first phase of the Project, where up-front funds are required to complete the engineered design and pay for a key regulatory permit, so all donations are appreciated”, said Linda Heron, Chair of the ORA.
The Ontario Rivers Alliance (ORA) is a Not-for-Profit grassroots organization acting as a voice for several stewardships, associations, private and Indigenous members who have come together to protect, conserve and restore healthy river ecosystems.
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Chair, Ontario Rivers Alliance
OntarioRiversAlliance.ca Tel: (705) 561-9027
Our organizations recommend choosing Alternative 3 – the Full Removal of Springbank Dam and the naturalization of this section of the Thames River. We submit that full dam removal and naturalization are the preferred solutions from an environmental perspective and would likely prove to be the most cost-effective over the long-term when Life-cycle costs and available provincial and federal funding are considered.