The Green Coalition is a non-profit association of groups and individuals with a mandate to promote the conservation, protection and restoration of the environment and the wise use of green and blue spaces.

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February 3, 2021: Green Coalition calls for National Wildlife Area on federal lands adjacent to Technoparc north of Montréal-Trudeau International Airport.

Westmountmag.ca

Preserve the last large unprotected marshland and riverine ecosystem on Montreal Island – 200 hectares of rare wildlife habitats – the size of Mount Royal Park.

The Honourable Clifford Lincoln, former Environment Minister of Quebec, has written an open letter to the federal government on December 3, 2020, in support of the Green Coalition‘s call for the creation of a National Wildlife Area on the Transport Canada lands north of Montréal-Trudeau International Airport. These federal lands, currently leased to l’Aéroport de Montréal (ADM), are located in the Montreal borough of Saint-Laurent and the City of Dorval.

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January 2, 2021: Calls to protect Montreal's last significant, intact wetlands intensify

Environmental groups, especially those that care for birds, say now is the time to create a national wildlife refuge near Trudeau airport.

Michelle Lalonde, Montreal Gazette

Federal Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson is evaluating a proposal by a coalition of Montreal-area environmental groups that would see more than 140 hectares of wilderness north of Trudeau airport preserved as a national wildlife refuge.

For years, ornithologists and conservationists have been calling for protection of those federally owned lands, as well as about 56 adjacent hectares of forests, meadows and wetlands that belong to the city of Montreal and to three private developers in and around the Technoparc in the St-Laurent borough.

But a line in the Liberal government’s Throne Speech, along with recent interest shown by several federal ministers and municipal politicians, has created a new buzz of optimism around the viability of the project.

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December 3, 2020:Clifford Lincoln endorses new wildlife reserve

Westmountmag.ca

The former Environment Minister writes to honourable ministers in support of a new National Wildlife Area.

Letter signed by friends of the environment and colleagues.

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August 20, 2020: An open letter from the Green Coalition to Ms. Sonia Lebel, President of the Treasury Board

Madam President,

The Green Coalition, an association of over sixty citizen groups throughout the Greater Montreal area dedicated to environmental protection, would respectfully like to bring Bill 66 to your attention.

The Green Coalition considers that this bill presents enormous dangers to our environmental regulation and supervision system in Quebec. We are no longer in the mid-1960s. In 2020, the health of Quebec’s population and the environment must be given priority. By putting the health of people and the environment first, the economy will follow - not the other way around. As you know, in our Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, it is proclaimed that everyone has the right “to live in a healthy environment that respects biodiversity.”

 

We must not circumvent our environmental protection regulations. Nevertheless, the Government of Quebec believes that by circumventing these regulations, the province will be better off. This is completely false. It is not by diminishing our environmental protection, which is already clearly insufficient, that real progress will be made.

Section IV of Bill 66 with the “ Environmental Acceleration Measures ” is clearly harmful because its structure still allows for the destruction of our urban wetlands in a context where we have already lost 90% of these natural spaces. In its totality, Bill 66 opens the door to very dangerous government immunity; summary expropriations and costs left to the goodwill of the state; the possibility of park destruction for certain projects; and the weakening of laws that protect species at risk, including fish habitat.

The Green Coalition believes that the health of people and the environment must be at the heart of all planning. Bill 66 treats the environment as an obstacle - a false and dangerous position.

 

We need initiatives of a different kind: Real investment in climate change mitigation. Investment in the creation of a true protected areas network. A research fund to protect species at risk. Improving the quality and protection of the St. Lawrence River. Rejuvenation and improvement of wastewater treatment facilities, et cetera. We support the construction of schools and institutions, but we cannot accept the even more intense destruction of our environmental heritage.

The Green Coalition therefore urges you to withdraw and rethink Bill 66 - for the well-being of Quebec and its population!

Thank you for your attention to this letter.

Best regards, Madam President,

Yours truly,
Gareth Richardson,President,
Green Coalition


August 12, 2020: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting

Video of the Meeting


August 12, 2020: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting

To all Green Coalition Members and Friends:

Annual General Meeting - by Zoom

Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - 7pm to 10pm

The featured speaker will be

Tommy Montpetit, Directeur de la conservation, Ciel et Terre
«An analysis of the proposed Bill 61 and its destructive effects on the environment and our natural spaces.»

You are cordially invited to the Annual General Meeting on August 12, 2020. Because of COVID 19 we are going to hold our Annual General Meeting as a virtual gathering through the means of Zoom. As you know, the Green Coalition resolutely insists that the proposed Bill 61 be completely modified in terms of its environmental protocols. Our virtual meeting on August 12 will begin with an analysis of Bill 61 by our featured speaker, Tommy Montpetit and a brief presentation by Campbell Stuart of Colby Monet, lawyers for the Green Coalition in the Technoparc case, about the Green Coalition's "mise en demeure" that was addressed to the Government of Québec on June 11, 2020. Presentations by representatives of our member groups will follow as well as a brief business meeting.

RSVP at greencoalitionverte@yahoo.ca

Please join in August 12. To participate we ask you to send an e-mail response to this invitation before August 1, 2020 so that your name can be added to the speakers’ list for member group presentations. You can also participate as an observer, and if that is the case you should also send us a response. Then, you will receive an electronic link to the Annual General Meeting - by Zoom, so that you can participate in the manner that you wish. It will be a pleasure to participate with you in this virtual meeting and I look forward to it.

Gareth Richardson, President, Green Coalition

Green Coalition, financial report 2019


June 6, 2020: Extraordinary Teleconference

To support the Green Coalition's demand for a public inquiry into procedures at the ministry of environment

Click here to participate

Please join the Green Coalition and Groupe Technoparc Oiseaux on Saturday, June 6, from 10 am - 3 pm for an extraordinary teleconference that will bring together environmental groups from across Quebec to discuss how the Quebec government has failed in its mandate to protect the environmen

During this Extraordinary Teleconference - Saturday, June 6

The Green Coalition and Technoparc Oiseaux will invite all the environmental groups to support the Green Coalition's demand for a public inquiry into procedures at the Quebec Ministry of Environment. The Ministry must repair its defective system of issuing Certificates of Authorization. It must preserve and defend the environment.

The Green Coalition and Technoparc Oiseaux will also invite all the environmental groups to support Green Coalition's demand for the City of Montréal to abandon the Technoparc development, to reverse the damage done, and to demand that the Minister rescind the Certificates of Authorization issued to the developers at Technoparc.


April 22, 2020: Pimento Report 145


January 23, 2020: Press Release

COALITION VERTE c.TECHNOPARC MONTREAL et al

Montreal, January 23, 2020 - On Monday, February 3, 2020 at 9 am the Green Coalition will return to court, after a delay of more than 3 years, as the plaintiff vs the City of Montreal in the TECHNOPARC case.

The Green Coalition and its legal representatives have been vigorously seeking an out-of-court settlement of the case. These efforts have failed.

In this court case, begun in 2016, the Green Coalition seeks to preserve the TECHNOPARC wildlands in perpetuity. This unique and contiguous ecosystem is located in the borough of Saint-Laurent. Its wetlands and natural milieux, and its habitats nurture a rich biodiversity, and notably, the greatest variety of bird species on Montreal Island. (please see map below) The Coalition's legal steps in 2016 failed to prevent a major encroachment into these sensitive natural spaces. Thousands of trees were cut down, a road and dike were cut through the wetlands causing the marshlands to dry up - and the inevitable result has been a significant drop in the bird population.

Now, the city lawyers insist that six large buildings will be constructed in the Eco Campus Hubert Reeves, in the Technoparc, adding to the damage already inflicted on its wetlands. Green Coalition cannot endorse any more construction there. The crucial request by the Green Coalition for the water to be restored immediately to the former marshlands was refused out of hand by the lawyers representing the city of Montreal.

Therefore, on February 3, 2020, Green Coalition will return to Court with new expert testimony as the plaintiff vs.Ville de Montréal.

The Coalition has called upon Madame la mairesse Valérie Plante and her team to give new directives to the city lawyers to favour the preservation of this wetland ecosystem - to give them a new mandate that is consistent with Madame Plante's role and public pronouncements as ICLEI's “Global Ambassador for Local Biodiversity”. (ICLEI is the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives)

But, repeated appeals to the Plante administration have failed and time has run out to settle the TECHNOPARC case out-of-court.

Green Coalition will mobilize its forces to raise funds for the legal challenge to come. There will be lots of publicity about the Green Coalition suing Ville de Montréal. Unfortunately, the reputation of the Plante administration is going to be tarnished for the destruction of the spectacular Technoparc wetlands and that means that all Montrealers will lose.


May 2, 2019: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting


April 10, 2019: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting

To all Green Coalition Members and Friends:
You are cordially invited to the Green Coalition Annual General Meeting on May 2, 2019.
After a brief business meeting there will be an update on the Legacy Fund for the Environment followed by presentations from representatives of our member groups.

Date: Thursday, May 2, 2019
Time: 7:00 – 10:00 pm
Place: Sarto-Desnoyers Community Centre
Salon A
1335 Lakeshore Road, Dorval
(Six streets west of Dorval Avenue)

Light refreshments, Tea and Coffee will be served.

It will be a pleasure to meet you there.

Gareth Richardson for the Green Coalition


February 17, 2019: In memoriam Lucia Kowaluk

Members of the Green Coalition were saddened to learn of the passing of Lucia Kowaluk. Along with her founding role in the Milton Park housing co-op and her many other activities in the community, which were recognized by the award of both the Order of Québec and the Order of Canada, Lucia was always a strong supporter of the Green Coalition's efforts to preserve urban natural spaces. She will be sorely missed. Our sympathies to her colleagues, friends, and family.


May 3, 2018: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting


March 30, 2018 Good Friday Migration


November 2, 2017: Environmental groups surveyed Montreal's municipal parties on environmental issues, publish answers

By Gloria Henriquez, Global News

Several environmental organizations polled Montreal's municipal parties on where they stand on green issues and theyre making the answers public.
There were eight questions in the survey that was given to candidates from all four political parties.
The questions asked were, for example, if candidates would oppose development in Pierrefonds West or if they would protect the St-Jacques Escarpment or support the creation of Meadowbrook Park.
Three parties provided answers.

Responses

Projet Montréal

Vrai changement pour Montréal

Coalition Montréal


May 4, 2017: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting


Annual General Meeting
Green Coalition

To all Green Coalition Members and Friends:
You are cordially invited to the Green Coalition Annual General Meeting on May 4, 2017.
After a brief business meeting there will be an update on the Legacy Project followed by presentations from representatives of our member groups.

Date: Thursday, May 4, 2017
Time: 7:00 – 10:00 pm
Place: Sarto-Desnoyers Community Centre
Salon A
1335 Lakeshore Road, Dorval
(Six streets west of Dorval Avenue)

Light refreshments, Tea and Coffee will be served.
It will be a pleasure to meet you there.
Gareth Richardson for the Green Coalition


Febuary 8, 2017: Green Coalition News Release - Green Coalition expert reports uncover negligent environmental assessment process by Quebec Environment Ministry in the destruction of wetlands in the Saint-Laurent Technoparc.

In September 2016 the Green Coalition requested a preliminary injunction to halt the ongoing work to extend boulevard Alfred Nobel and other intrusions into the wetlands then being carried out by the borough of Saint-Laurent to facilitate the development project known as the Èco-campus Hubert Reeves.
The request was judged to be urgent but was not granted when, during the hearings, lawyers for the Ministère du dévelopment durable, de l’environnement et de la lutte contre les changements climatiques du Québec (MDDELCC) submitted a list of studies on which they had apparently based their decision to grant Certificates of Authorisation for the project.
The Green Coalition subsequently commissioned analyses of these studies by two independent experts which identified major faults and irregularities in the studies, faults and irregularities that were never submitted to the first Judge by the MDDELCC.
The expert reports clearly demonstrate that the Technoparc studies were exclusively conducted by and for the real estate promoter and were outdated, incomplete and totally inadequate to support the granting of the certificates.

read more


January 20, 2017: OCPM announces consultation on the future of Pierrefonds West

DEUX NOUVELLES CONSULTATIONS DÉJÀ ANNONCÉES POUR 2017


January 20, 2017: BAPE report critical of proposed REM

Projet de réseau électrique métropolitain de transport collectif


January 20, 2017: Green Coalition comments on Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue's NORTH SECTOR SPECIAL PLANNING PROGRAM (SPP)

The Green Coalition strongly believes that 100% of Anse-à-l'Orme must be conserved in both Pierrefonds and Saint-Anne-de-Bellevue. This conviction stems from our absolute commitment to conserving and preserving natural spaces on the Island of Montreal, to conserve them for their inestimable ecological value and their importance to Montreal's citizens. Conservation of this kind is an environmental and political imperative since we are living through an era of immense environmental destruction.

For the Green Coalition, saving the natural heritage of Saint-Anne-de-Bellevue North, its agricultural lands "en friche" and forests in the Le Corridor écoforestier de la rivière-à-l’Orme, has been a preoccupation since the 1980s, because the Corridor harbours the richest biodiversity in the Montreal Agglomeration. Green Coalition insists that a Grand-parc national be created to conserve the entire Anse-à-l’Orme Corridor and adjacent nature parks, east, west and north along Lac-des-Deux-Montagnes, and, that the Grand-parc become the keystone piece of the "Ceinture verte du Grand Montrèal".

read more

References

NORTH SECTOR SPP

Charte Forum Nature Montreal

SCIENTIFIC STUDIES_1 Évaluation écologique de louest du territoire de Pierrefonds-Roxboro-16février2016

SCIENTIFIC STUDIES_2 Rapport sur les connectivites-Pierrefonds

The Growth Ponzi Scheme Part 1

The Growth Ponzi Scheme Part 2


December 6, 2016: Consultations on proposed Pierrefonds West development to go ahead

Kate Sheridan, Special to the Montreal Gazette

The City of Montreal’s executive committee officially referred the proposed 5,500-home development in Pierrefonds West to the Office de consultation publique de Montréal (OCPM) on Nov. 16, Pierrefonds-Roxboro Mayor Jim Beis confirmed at the borough council meeting Monday night.
No date has been set for the start of the first, “upstream” public consultation period, expected to begin early in 2017. The entire consultative process, which will require a new, specific urban planning program and several rounds of consultations, could last until 2019.

read more


December 4, 2016: Government-Owned Corporations and their Obligations to Citizens

What is the obligation of government-owned corporations to listen to citizens’ concerns and most importantly protect citizens from potential harms? What role does the voice of citizens play in determining the implementation of projects ultimately funded by constituents? In May 2016, a proposed Hydro Quebec project to construct a 315kV transmission line in densely populated Dollard-Des-Ormeaux (DDO) between the Boul. Des Sources and Boul. St. Jean power substations entered the government-mandated public consultation phase. At these public hearings, before the Bureau d'audiences publiques sur l'environnement (BAPE), concerned residents presented their well-researched issues and arguments opposing the aerial installation of this high voltage transmission line. While recognizing Hydro Quebec’s need for an upgraded power grid on Montreal’s West Island, the citizens of DDO called for the line to be constructed underground. Their call has been fully supported by the DDO city officials, whose mayor and entire town council unanimously passed a resolution requesting an underground installation of this line. The list of concerns regarding this project includes:

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November 16, 2016: Trump win a challenge to Canada's climate change fight

Leehi Yona, Special to the Montreal Gazette

A year ago, I listened to Justin Trudeau talk about “sunny ways” Canada. I cautiously believed in a new, bright, reconciliatory moment for our country.
Yet last week, in response to Donald Trump’s election, Trudeau spoke about his “shared values” with Americans.
As a Canadian studying in the United States, I have been surprised and shocked by the outcome of last week’s presidential election. As a graduate student researching climate change, I am horrified that a country as important as the United States will be led by someone who denies climate change; he will be the only leader of a major industrial country to take that stance.

read more


August 28, 2016: Bird watching event at the St-Laurent Techno Park


August 13, 2016: Come to the Exhibition l’Anse à l’Orme launches the Alarm!

Sauvons l'Anse-à-l'Orme invites you to an exhibition of works by artists who oppose the destruction of the last natural spaces on the Island of Montreal!


August 13, 2016: Elizabeth May calls for protection of endangered species in the Saint Laurent Technoparc


July 22, 2016: For 375th birthday, let's get serious about green spaces

Sylvia Oljemark, Special to the Montreal Gazette

When Denis Coderre came to office in 2013, Montreal ranked dead last of any city in Canada for per capita green space. But in inheriting a huge green space deficit, the new mayor and his team also inherited the responsibility to do something about it.
Instead, one of the first things that team Coderre did was to slash existing funds for the protection of natural spaces. At the same time, the mayor claimed he would find the money, if it were needed, for green spaces.
The mayor’s ambivalence sends a signal that Montreal is indifferent to the crisis of its dwindling natural spaces, and does not take its own objectives seriously. What a pity, since Montreal could be a world champion, proud to protect its iconic natural heritage.

read more


July 18, 2016: Technoparc expansion will disrupt bird-watching 'paradise', conservationists warn

CBC News

Bird lovers in the St-Laurent borough are calling on an industrial park to reconsider developing on wetlands they claim have some of the richest biodiversity on the Island of Montreal.
Construction of the Éco Campus Hubert Reeves, an incubator for young cleantech firms, is set to start next month on a piece of undeveloped land just north of Trudeau airport.
This would expand the current Technoparc Montreal, where companies like Bombardier, 3M and Hewlett Packard have offices.

read more


Monday May 16, 2016: Students protest l'Anse-à-l'Orme development


May 15, 2016: Environmentalists renew push to save Hirondelles Woods in St-Bruno

CBC News

About 200 people rallied near Saint-Bruno to make another push to save a wooded area from a luxury housing development.
The six-hectare forest, called Hirondelles Woods, is considered an important home for wildlife by environmentalists, and one of the few remaining spots for an endangered plant, the wild ginseng.
Protesters want Quebec Environment Minister David Heurtel to nix the project, which would subdivide the forest — about the size of nine football fields — to build 30 luxury homes.

 

read more


May 5, 2016: Green Coalition Annual General Meeting.

April 21, 2016: Local environmental groups demand halt to green space development

Michelle Lalonde, Montreal Gazette

Just in time for International Earth Day on Friday, local environment groups are calling on Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre to make a real commitment to preserving the remaining natural green space on the island of Montreal.
On Thursday, representatives of several local environment groups posted a Charter on Green Space Protection on the door of Montreal City Hall, demanding an immediate moratorium on development of green spaces on the island and recognizing every Montrealer’s right to live near accessible natural spaces.
The charter is the fruit of a forum held last weekend which brought together about 100 people, including scientists and experts in biodiversity, green space protection, urban planning, health, social welfare, along with members of 40 local environmental organizations, including Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS), Les amis du Parc Meadowbrook, Sauvons L’Anse-à-l’Orme, GRAME, Sauvons la Falaise, the Green Coalition, and the Sierra Club Québec.

read more


February 23, 2016: Scientific studies-the proposed Pierrefonds development project must not be built

Green Coalition News Release February 23, 2016:

For the Green Coalition, Feb. 23, 2016 is an historic day. Today, in David Suzuki Foundation made public the results of two important environmental studies that indicate that a real estate project must not be built on the wet meadows of Western Pierrefonds.
First, there is the Report entitled Ecological Assessment of the Western Area of Pierrefonds Roxboro, prepared by Marie-Éve Roy, Patrick Gravel, and Jérôme Dupras.
The report is an ecological inventory of wet meadows targeted as a site for a massive real estate project. The results of the report revealed that there are more than 270 species of flora and fauna present in the area, some of which have special status under both provincial and federal law, as well as rare and endangered species, and at least one that had been thought to have disappeared entirely from the island of Montreal.
Secondly, another study by a group of experts in environment and land management indicates that a very large housing project in this area would increase the fragmentation of this eco-territory by 90% thereby negatively affecting the environmental connectivity and regional biodiversity.
The head of scientific projects for the David Suzuki Foundation, Jean-Patrick Toussaint, draws a very clear conclusion: "In the light of these studies, it is obvious that a real estate project in this area must not be built. The Montreal Agglomeration and the borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro must stop this project and Quebec and Ottawa must issue emergency orders under Quebec's law on endangered species and Ottawa's legislation on imperiled species, and certainly for the brown snake and the Canada black snakeroot.

Évaluation écologique de l'ouest du territoire de Pierrefonds-Roxboro

The impacts of the Cap Nature real estate project (Pierrefonds West)on ecological connectivity

Press Coverage

Montreal Gazette

Global News


February 17, 2016: Group with Mafia links offers controversial Pierrefonds land for sale to developers

Linda Gyulai, Montreal Gazette

A parcel of land in the largest remaining natural space on Montreal Island, where the administration of Mayor Denis Coderre vowed last year it would block development to create an eco-territory, is for sale by a group of people and companies that have links to a who’s who of the Montreal Mafia.
And the Coderre administration now says that residential construction on the piece of land near Gouin Blvd. W. in western Pierrefonds is “theoretically” possible. That’s after the administration vowed in June to “completely block all development” on it in response to a Montreal Gazette article that revealed the property’s ownership and the fact that the city had negotiated for years with the owners to buy it for conservation but gave up without trying to expropriate it.

read more


February 16, 2016: Opposition growing to housing project on western Pierrefonds natural space

Linda Gyulai, Montreal Gazette

Political and public opposition appears to be building against the Coderre administration’s plan to allow a large-scale housing project in western Pierrefonds on what is the largest remaining natural space on Montreal Island, but the project developers say that’s only because the public doesn’t know enough yet about the plan.
Ten thousand signatures have been gathered on a petition against the Pierrefonds-Ouest development, a plan that would allow a group of five developers to build 5,500 residential units on the natural space. As well, the borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro now has the results of a poll it ordered late last year showing that 13 per cent of local residents approve of a development on the 185 hectares of natural space.

read more


February 16, 2016: Owner of part of Angell Woods ready to cut 5,000 ash trees

Albert Kramberger, Special to the Montreal Gazette

Faced with a legal challenge by the city of Beaconsfield, a private owner of a tract of land in Angell Woods is proposing a timetable to potentially fell more than 5,000 ash trees as a preventive measure to control the spread of the destructive emerald ash borer beetle.
Last October, city council tabled a resolution calling for legal recourse targeting private land owners who have yet to submit a plan to protect wooded areas from the spread of the EAB, whose presence had been confirmed within Beaconsfield’s territory and neighbouring municipalities.
Under Beaconsfield’s EAB control bylaw, tabled in 2014, private owners of one hectare or more of forested areas were required to submit a silviculture prescription, outlining the possible felling or treatment of ash trees, by spring 2015.

read more


February 15, 2016: Ste-Anne goes back to drawing board with development plan for north sector

Albert Kramberger, Special to the Montreal Gazette

Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue has mandated a firm to prepare a new and much anticipated special planning program for a vast undeveloped area east of its industrial park near the l’Anse à l’Orme nature reserve.
An initial plan for the northern sector of the town proposed in 2012 that would have seen about 4,000 residents added to the area, almost doubling the population of Ste-Anne, which stands at about 5,000, was dropped after residents objected.
Last week, council awarded a $40,000 contract to Provencher Roy Urbanisme Inc. to prepare a new planning program, revise existing regulations and establish development guidelines specifically aimed for a 276-hectare area in the town’s northern sector.
“This is the one we will present to citizens,” said Mayor Paola Hawa.

read more


February 11, 2016: Groups call for bike/pedestrian bridge over Highway 20 and train tracks

Andy Riga, Montreal Gazette

In 2010, Transport Quebec said it would build a green bridge over Highway 20 and the CN train tracks when they were moved as part of the Turcot reconstruction project.
A wide concrete overpass covered in grass and trees, it would be reserved for cyclists and pedestrians crossing between the Lachine Canal and a new bike/walking path at the foot of the falaise St-Jacques, an escarpment just north of the former Turcot train yards.
The 1,900-square-metre link — referred to as a “dalle-parc” or park on a slab — was still on Turcot planning maps as recently as 2012 but is no longer shown in official maps related to the $3.7-billion Turcot project.
Now, a coalition of groups is demanding that the idea be revived to improve access between Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, the falaise bike/walking path and points south, including the Lachine Canal and Ville-Émard.

read more


February 4, 2016: Falaise St-Jacques: A pocket of wilderness in Montreal's concrete jungle

Andy Riga, Montreal Gazette

The gusts of cold wind die down after you slip through a hole that trespassers have made in the mangled chain-link fence behind a Notre-Dame-de-Grâce bowling alley.
Leaving the desolate, ice-encrusted Rose Bowl parking lot behind, you’re embraced by an unexpectedly warm urban forest — a microclimate favoured by as many as 65 species of birds, with tracks indicating raccoons (and maybe even deer and foxes or coyotes) like to visit, too.
Lisa Mintz is leading a tour of the urban oasis that she has taken under wing.
We’re on the falaise St-Jacques — a forested, four-kilometre escarpment between the Turcot Interchange and Montreal West. Some call it the lungs of N.D.G.

read more


February 1, 2016: Close to 10,000 signatures on petition to save Pierrefonds green space

Kathyrn Greenaway, Montreal Gazette

Community group Sauvons l’Anse-à-l’Orme presented a petition with 9,700 signatures to Pierrefonds-Roxboro borough Mayor Jim Beis on Feb. 1. The petition, presented by Sauvons spokesman Ross Stitt, calls for the protection of 100 per cent of a green space in Pierrefonds West now zoned for residential development.

read more


January 29, 2016: Citizen’s group submits petition signed by more than 9500 citizens demanding protection of 100% of l’Anse-à-l’Orme corridor.

Pierrefonds, January 29, 2016 – At the monthly Pierrefonds council meeting, on February 1, 2016, members of the citizen’s group Sauvons l’Anse-à-l’Orme will submit the first installment of a petition to Pierrefonds-Roxboro Borough Mayor Jim Beis. The petition containing more than 9500 signatures demands the conservation and protection of 100% of the Rivière-à-l’Orme Ecoforest Corridor and the surrounding wetland meadows. In part the petition states; ‘This development will destroy this ecosystem and its local and unique biodiversity.’

read more


December 12, 2015: Outcomes of the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris

Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reached a landmark agreement on December 12 in Paris, charting a fundamentally new course in the two-decade-old global climate effort. Culminating a four-year negotiating round, the new treaty ends the strict differentiation between developed and developing countries that characterized earlier efforts, replacing it with a common framework that commits all countries to put forward their best efforts and to strengthen them in the years ahead. This includes, for the first time, requirements that all parties report regularly on their emissions and implementation efforts, and undergo international review.

read more


December 14, 2015: Sierra Club Quebec, GRIP-UQAM, the Green Coalition and several citizen groups demand a ten-year moratorium on all residential development in green spaces on the island of Montreal.

Sierra Club Quebec, GRIP-UQAM, the Green Coalition Sauvons Anse-à-l‘orme, Sauvons la Falaise and les Amis du Parc Meadowbrook join forces to demand from the Montreal Agglomeration, from all municipalities on the island of Montreal and from the government of Québec a Green Moratorium. Such a moratorium requires a halt to all development on and in green spaces on the island of Montreal for the next ten years, the time needed to assure proper protection of natural spaces.

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December 2, 2015: Green spaces and biodiversity - Montréal moves forward and acquires land to expand the Parc-nature des Rapides-du-Cheval-Blanc

Montréal, le 2 décembre 2015 - Mr. Réal Ménard, member of the Montréal Executive Committee responsible for sustainable development, the environment, large parks and green spaces, recommended to the urban agglomeration council the acquisition of a 22,999.4-square-metre piece of land in the Pierrefonds-Roxboro Borough, to expand the Rapides-du-Cheval-Blanc Nature Park. This piece of land is located on 5e Avenue Nord between boulevard Gouin and rivière des Prairies. The transaction is valued at $3,431,280, taxes included.

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November 22, 2015: Montreal moves to spend $6 million to expand Île-Bizard nature park

Kate Sheridan, Special to the Montreal Gazette

A 4-million-square-foot lot on Île-Bizard should be bought and added to the Bois-de-l’Île-Bizard Nature Park, the City of Montreal recommended to the agglomeration council on Nov. 19. The proposed purchase was also presented at Montreal’s city council on Monday.
The lot, near Bord-du-Lac Road, would cost the agglomeration about $6 million. The purchase would still have to be finalized with the property’s current owner.
The acquisition is part of the city’s goal to increase the amount of green space in Montreal. The recent Schéma d’aménagement et de développement, an urban planning document for the city adopted in January, set the target for protected natural areas to be 10 per cent of the city’s area.

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November 15, 2015: C-vert CDN-NDG shows supports for Sauvons La Falaise


November 7, 2015: Citizens gather to defend the L'Anse-À-L'Orme natural space on the island of Montréal


November 7, 2015: Anse-à-l'Orme conservation group blocks road of new housing development

CBC News

Inspired by Mayor Denis Coderre's jackhammer-versus-mailbox incident, residents and activists in Pierrefonds raised their pickaxes and jackhammers in protest against a planned housing development.
The group Sauvons l'Anse-à-l'Orme claims a road in the l'Anse-à-l'Orme nature park is illegal and they want the city to halt any further development.
"We're following mayor [Denis] Coderre's symbolic action of taking a jackhammer to mailboxes and doing the same thing to the road here," said Donald Hobus, a member of Sauvons l'Anse-à-l'Orme.
"It's symbolic. We're not doing any damage but we're saying this road is illegal, we want it removed and want the whole area protected."
The planned 185-hectare development would erect 5,000 new housing units.
The group has collected more than 6,000 signatures for a petition to stop the project, and this week it filed a second injunction against the developer.
It plans to present the petition to Coderre and the Pierrefonds-Roxboro borough mayor Dimitrios Beis next month.

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November 3, 2015: With Pierrefonds mayor a no-show, group delays presenting petition agains massive housing development

Kate Sheridan Special to the Montreal Gazette

An environmental group protesting the planned 5,000-house development in Pierrefonds West decided to delay presenting a petition to Pierrefonds-Roxboro borough council Monday evening when they discovered the mayor was not at the meeting.
Members of Sauvons-l’Anse-a-l’Orme had planned to present their petition, months in the making at the borough’s November council meeting. But just before the meeting started, they learned borough mayor Dimitrios Jim Beis wouldn’t be there to receive it.
The petition asks the city and borough governments to protect 185 hectares currently designated for a 5,000-house development. “This development will have an irreversible, detrimental impact on this unique ecosystem and it’s biodiversity,” the petition reads.
About 6,500 people signed the petition, which the group posted online and took on a door-to-door campaign in the area.

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November 2, 2015: Petition! Injunction! S.L.A.L. Go! Go! Go


November 2, 2015: Fight continues to save Pierrefonds green space

By Felicia Parrillo Global News

PIERREFONDS-ROXBORO – On the courthouse steps Monday morning, a group opposing a development in Pierrefonds took their fight to a new level.
“We’ve deposited an injunction with the courts last Thursday morning,” said Donald Hobus, with the Sauvons l’Anse-à-l’Orme group.“It essentially asks the courts that the government, Minister of Transport, Minister of Environment and the City of Montreal be forced to respect the law and that’s something they have not done.”
The group objects a plan to develop over 5,000 homes on the forest and wetlands near the l’Anse-à-l’Orme Nature Park.They insist the land is home to a variety of wildlife that would be devastated by the plan.

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October 29, 2015: OCPM Consultation: Reducing dependance on fossil fuels

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October 22, 2015: Angell Woods: Montreal to spend $3.5M to buy part of West Island forest

Ainslie Maclellan CBC News

The City of Montreal will spend $3.5 million to acquire a 78,500-square metre expanse of land in the West Island and add it to the protected l'Anse-à-l'Orme nature park.
The property at 575 Elm Avenue in Beaconsfield is part of the Angell Woods forest. The acquisition of the land – about the size of ten CFL football fields – would extend l'Anse-à-l'Orme nature park to Highway 20.

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October 9, 2015: Opinion: Let's protect the St-Jacques escarpment

Lisa Mintz Special to the Gazette

Montreal is facing an important moral question: do we live up to our own stated environmental goals, or do we fail to do that and break our word?
I am a citizen and a member of the Sauvons la falaise and the non-partisan Green Coalition, two of this city’s groups working to protect the environment. I have a story about Montreal’s aspirations, and the environmental destruction that is taking place right before our eyes.

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September 20, 2015: Nature as Medecine


September 17,2015: Fight to stop 5,000-unit development in Pierrefonds West continues

Kate Sheridan, Special to the Montreal Gazette

Almost 2,000 have signed an online petition calling for the mayor of Montreal and the borough mayor of Pierrefonds-Roxboro to reconsider a planned 5,000-house development near the Anse-à-l’Orme eco-territory in Pierrefonds West.
The petition, circulated by environmental group Sauvons-l’Anse-à-l’Orme, calls for the city and borough governments to protect 185 hectares currently designated for the development, noting that the ecosystem is vital to the area, and borough residents may also have to pay more in taxes to support services for the new development, including snow removal and garbage services.
The city announced in June that 180 hectares would be set aside for conservation as part of the development plans, but critics said that the effort was nothing more than a new, environmentally-friendly label on an old plan that would exacerbate traffic issues and destroy an ecosystem that is “unique” on the island of Montreal..

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September 11, 2015: Opinion: Pierrefonds West site should be preserved, not used for housing

Floris Ensink, Special to the Montreal Gazette

In 2002, the Quebec government created a designation of “humanized landscape” to be applied to areas possessing remarkable qualities, making necessary the conservation of their particular biodiversity. The government wants these kinds of lands to be protected so that, “these territories will not become museums, but areas of excellence for sustainable development in which economic activities, conservation of biodiversity and the social and cultural development will form a harmonious whole,” as explained on the website of the Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques.

As the president of Sierra Club Quebec, I am one of many local environmentalists attempting to preserve 185 hectares of wet meadows in western Pierrefonds that are extremely valuable for the ecology of Montreal Island.

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September 1, 2015: What's in the Wild of Pierrefonds West

By John Symon, Montreal Times

We wrote earlier about the controversial 6,000-home residential project in Pierrefonds West that is strongly opposed by environmentalists. To understand their point of view, The Times did a nature walk there with David Fletcher, 75, a retired teacher who is extremely knowledgeable about local flora and fauna. This 185-hectare parcel was farmed until the 1980s, but now sits fallow.

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August 24, 2015: Global Temperature Update

James Hansen and Makiko Sato

It is clear that 2015 will be the warmest year in the period of instrumental measurements, as an ongoing El Nino adds to a warming trend. We can already predict that the 2015 global temperature will exceed the prior warmest year (2014) by an unusually wide margin (~ 0.1°C), exceeding 1998 (“El Nino of the century”) even further.

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July 7, 2015 Group filing lawsuit to prevent western Pierrefonds land from being developed

Linda Gyulai, Montreal Gazette

A new group that says it will use the courts to defend the environment in Canada plans to fire its opening salvo at the city of Montreal and its project to allow high-density residential development on a vast natural space in western Pierrefonds.
Montreal lawyer Campbell Stuart said he will file an injunction against the city, the Montreal Metropolitan Community and a developer in Quebec Superior Court on Wednesday morning on behalf of the new organization, which is called Legacy Project (or Projet génération in French), and a Pierrefonds resident.
The object of the injunction request is to have a judge recognize the protected agricultural zoning of a nearly 20-hectare parcel of land that slices through a 180-hectare area of natural space where the administration of Mayor Denis Coderre has declared its intention to allow the development of 5,000 to 6,000 homes. The zone is beside another 180-hectare area of natural space further west and close to the border between Pierrefonds and Senneville that the administration says it will conserve as an eco-territory.

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July 3, 2015 Opinion: It's crucial to preserve Montreal Island's remaining natural spaces

AL HAYEK,SPECIAL TO THE MONTREAL GAZETTE

Last Friday, Montreal and the borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro announced plans for western Pierrefonds: To sweeten the deal to build 5,000-6,000 housing units on 185 hectares of land, developers are to cede approximately 80 hectares of surrounding area to the city for preservation. (About 100 hectares of mainly forest had already been preserved.)

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June 28, 2015 Please write a letter to Denis Coderre

Save the 185 hectares targeted for a monster development at Anse-à-l’Orme in Pierrefonds West!

A monster development is being planned – up to 6,000 housing units, some 16,000 new residents, adding 10,000 more cars to West Island ’s traffic gridlock. Instead of this unacceptable encroachment on the l’Anse-à-l’Orme Corridor, the Green Coalition and the Mouvement Ceinture Verte are appealing to the Coderre administration to conserve the 185 hectares of prime farmland “en friche” and to protect its outstanding habitat and biodiversity.

For more information, see sample letter and Green Coaltion position below.

Please write a letter, in your own words, to Mayor Denis Coderre and send a copy to Mr. Jim Beis, Mayor of Pierrefonds-Roxboro and to Mr. Russell Copeman, Ville de Montréal executive committee member for housing and urban planning.

Also, please send a copy to the Green Coalition and to the Mouvement Ceinture Verte so that we can keep a record of the letters.

Kindly circulate this message as widely as possible. Thank you for helping to protect and conserve Montreal ’s natural heritage for our children and grandchildren.

Patrick Barnard, David Fletcher and Sylvia Oljemark Green Coalition

Sample letter

mm dd, 2015

Monsieur Denis Coderre
Mayor of Montreal

Please save the 185 hectares targeted for a monster development at Anse-à-l’Orme in Pierrefonds West

Dear Mayor Coderre,

I appeal to you save the 185 hectares of prime farmland “en friche” at Anse-à-l’Orme in Pierrefonds West and to protect its sensitive habitat and biodiversity. Please do not carve a housing development into Anse-à-l’Orme Corridor. Anse-à-l’Orme Corridor is an asset of exceptional ecological and economic potential – unique among urban agglomerations – anywhere. Will you please protect Anse-à-l’Orme Corridor in its entirety for our Metropolis – including all 185 hectares in Pierrefonds West? You will bestow a living legacy in perpetuity on all Montrealers.

Yours sincerely,

Your name
Group (if applicable)

c.c. Monsieur Jim Beis, Maire de l'arrondissement Pierrefonds-Roxboro
Monsieur Russell Copeman, responsable de l'habitation, de l'urbanisme, des immeubles et stratégies immobilières au comité exécutif de la Ville de Montréal.

email to:
Denis Coderre : maire@ville.montreal.qc.ca cc to :
Jim Beis : dimitrios.beis@ville.montreal.qc.ca
Russell Copeman : russell.copeman@ville.montreal.qc.ca greencoalitionverte@yahoo.ca
mouvement.ceinture.verte@gmail.com


June 12, 2015 Sauvons L'Anse À L'Orme!


June 9, 2015: Plans for 5,000 new homes in Pierrefonds West moves forward slowly

KATHRYN GREENAWAY, MONTREAL GAZETTE

No concrete plans on the table and no permits issued. That was Pierrefonds-Roxboro Mayor Jim Beis’s answer to a question raised about the future development of 175 hectares in western Pierrefonds during the borough’s council meeting June 1.

“There is nothing to present at this point,” Beis said. “But we continue to meet every month with all the partners involved (representatives from the City of Montreal and investors) to discuss the best way to develop Pierrefonds West.”

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April 7, 2015: Green Coalition Opposes Massive Development on Prime Farmland in Pierrefonds West

GREEN COALITION’S POSITION

*De-zoning the “permanent”agricultural zone:In 1991, despite the massive majority opposition mobilized by Green Coalition at the public hearings, 700 hectares of prime farmland were deleted from the permanent agricultural zone in Senneville, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, Île-Bizard and Pierrefonds. After 1991, Pierrefonds farmlands were designated RURAL until that designation was quietly changed to RESIDENTIAL in 2009.

EFFECTS OF DEVELOPMENT IN PIERREFONDS WEST AT ANSE-À-L’ORME ON SERVICES, INFRASTRUCTURE AND QUALITY OF LIFE


March 2, 2015 Letter to Mayor Coderre

March 2, 2015

CONGRATULATIONS TO MAYOR DENIS CODERRE:

The New Schéma boosts the protection for Montreal’s natural heritage

Dear Mayor Coderre,

The Green Coalition is delighted that you and your administration have entrenched the protection of both Meadowbrook and Angell Woods in the new Schéma – the Land Use and Development Plan for the Agglomeration of Montreal. Citizens have sought to save these two iconic green spaces for more than a quarter-century. How exciting that these special places will now be protected for all Montrealers today and tomorrow. The Green Coalition is equally delighted that the Schéma will provide a significant boost for the protection of Montreal Island’s natural heritage to 10% of the territory. Your administration has taken up a brave and bold challenge: a good place to start is Western Pierrefonds.

The Coalition strongly recommends that the 175 hectares there, slated for a massive residential development, be re-dedicated for conservation. Not only is this the largest remaining swath of unprotected natural green space in the agglomeration, but it is also prime farmland. These farmlands have excellent soil quality and the longest growing season in the region, due to Montreal Island’s unique micro-climate created by its surrounding river systems. These are simply the best agricultural lands in all of Quebec. For our sustainable development city, it is imperative to seize the opportunity to save its Pierrefonds farmland, a non-renewable resource with outstanding potential as a food source, while helping to attain the new 10% target.

Mayor Coderre, we trust you will recall our discussion in your office about the Green Coalition’s proposals – major projects to salute “Montreal & its River” for the 375th Anniversary of Montreal in 2017.  These projects will also contribute to achieving the 10% target. All feature River connections to Montreal’s spectacular green spaces:

Mayor Coderre, please accept our hearty congratulations on all your new initiatives for the protection and conservation of the natural spaces of our Metropolis. We look forward to more opportunities to continue our dialogue with you on these vital matters.

Sincerely,

Patrick Barnard, David Fletcher and Sylvia Oljemark Porte-parole, Coalition Verte

Affiliations:
Partenaires du Parc Écologique de l’Archipel de Montréal (PPEAM)
Mouvement Ceinture Verte


January 22, 2015: Montréal Executive Committee approves revised Agglomeration Land Use and Development Plan

The revised plan includes an increase in the terrestial natural space protection target from 6% to 10% and 'Green Space or Recreational' zoning for all of the Meadowbrook golf course.

read more (french)

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