Anyone who has set foot on the shores of Lake Ontario this summer knows the current water supply regulations are not working; water levels have been so low and created stagnant, rotting and frankly disgusting conditions.
The 1952 International Joint Commissions plan to control the water supply in the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario includes a 1956 provision to provide no less protection of shoreline interests downstream of the dams. Since then, meadow marsh ecosystems have declined over 50 percent due to a regulation that favors protection of lakefront property rights. Shoreline interests have largely been ignored.
The current proposal, Plan Bv7, will result in a rise of the maximum level of Lake Ontario by 2.4 inches. Although controlled, this magnitude of fluctuation occurs now without property owners blinking an eye. The desire to live on the shores of such a majestic water body includes watching such forces of nature at work.
Wetlands and shoreline communities require more natural water fluctuations. Shoreline property cant be protected from erosion if the ecosystems which create the beneficial root structures are gone. The monostands of cattail that are taking over are not nice to look at. Where are the flowers and birds and turtles? They need more water.
Lakefront property is limited, valuable and in high demand. Plan Bv7 is not aiming to devalue such concerns; only make ecosystems more robust, diverse and appealing to the plants and animals that rely on such areas, and the people who relish the beauty and majesty of this resource.