We are a non-profit organization of volunteers opposed to an application from Nelson Aggregate to blast an additional 124 acres into two open-pit limestone mines on Mt. Nemo in Burlington's UNESCO Biosphere Reserve on the Niagara Escarpment.
To preserve the ecological integrity of rural Burlington, and to advocate for healthier communities by protecting our land, air and water.
"If they blow a hole in my backyard, everyone is gonna run away. And the creeks won't flow to the Great Lake below; will the water in the wells still be okay?"
Sarah Harmer - Escarpment Blues
Did You Know?
There are 22 licensed quarries in Halton Region alone, covering an area of 3810 acres, producing an average of 7.1 million metric tonnes of aggregate per year.
Halton Region (which includes Burlington) is one of the highest aggregate producers in Ontario.
After 70 long years of open-pit mining on Mt. Nemo in rural Burlington, Nelson Aggregate (in addition to applying for two new quarries) has stated that they plan to continue operations in the existing quarry for 50 more years!
Hardly a Fair Trade from the 'People-for-Rocks'
Nelson Aggregate is offering the citizens of Burlington a trade. Let them blow-up an additional 124 acres of prime Niagara Escarpment green-lands and they'll give the city a pretty park. Sometime in the far-away future.
Question: Isn't Nelson Aggregate ALREADY obligated to rehabilitate their existing 500 acre hole in the escarpment...leave it to fill in and form a lake? We don’t need to give Nelson Aggregate an additional 124 acres of our precious green-space in order to receive the 'gift' of a far-off future park.
An exhausted pit is of no value to an aggregate company, and carries significant costs and liabilities. After exploiting tens of millions of dollars from the destruction of the local landscape, giving the community an abandoned pit is no gift: rather, society gifted Nelson Aggregate the right to extract the mineral resource in the first place. Are we going to give Nelson another 50 years in return for a park?
When will Burlington get its long-promised lake?
"We have a park. It’s called the Niagara Escarpment and it’s pretty perfect."
Comment posted on CORE Burlington's Facebook Page by Nancy Louise
Don't be distracted by the promises of parks-for-people from people-for-rocks. No 'new' park is worth 124 acres of permanently obliterated escarpment lands.
Steve Lindstrom, Duluth Tribune: Nov, 2013
If Nelson intended to create a park for the community, wouldn’t they have done so already with a portion of the existing quarry that is no longer in use? It seems 'convenient' that their offer to donate the exhausted quarry-land for a park is conditional upon approval of their current application to blast two new pits down the road from the current one.
Here's the City of Burlington's response to Nelson's park-punt.
"Recently, there has been an effort on the part of the Nelson Quarry proponent to frame its quarry application as a gift of a park to the city, contingent on approval of a new multi-decade mining operation on the Niagara Escarpment World Biosphere Reserve."
Once it's gone, it's gone forever
Open-pit mining companies make promises of ‘rehabilitating’ the land, but no man-made rehabilitation can replicate the complexity of a bio-diverse ecosystem that has been blasted to its rocky core.
"What branches grow out of this stony rubbish?"
T.S. Eliot - The Wasteland
Did you know?
There are 22 licensed quarries in Halton Region alone, covering an area of 3810 acres, producing an average of 7.1 million metric tonnes of aggregate per year. Halton Region (which includes Burlington) is one of the highest aggregate producers in Ontario.
After 70 long years of open-pit mining on Mt. Nemo in rural Burlington, Nelson Aggregate (in addition to applying for two new quarries ) has stated that they plan to continue operations in the existing quarry for 50 more years! When will Burlington get its long-promised lake?
1. Oppose new aggregate mineral extraction, and processing of off-site aggregates, and asphalt reprocessing on Burlington escarpment lands.
2. STOP the importation of any fill into Nelson Aggregate's below-the-water-table Mt. Nemo open-pit quarry mine.
3. Protect the environmentally sensitive biodiversity of the Burlington escarpment woodlands, wetlands, water courses and prime agricultural lands, consistent with our UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve designation.
4. Advocate on behalf of all living organisms, particularly species-at-risk
Trucks entering Nelson Aggregate's current Burlington pit: winter 2020
5. Protect and improve the quality of our air, and the quality and supply of our water.
6. Address concerns associated with HEAVY truck traffic including noise, vibration, pollution, community safety, and road infrastructure
7. Advocate for a comprehensive, science-based assessment of all potential negative impacts, including cumulative impacts, of more aggregate extraction on the Burlington escarpment.
8. Champion our rural community's quality-of-life, and the safe and peaceful enjoyment of our homes for our families and future generations.
"When no one is left to mourn,
when we are sure that the butternut trees have gone
and only the dust rises from the north bluff;
when we cannot go back to our promises
because we have lost what is there to save,
and there is nothing left to take,
the price of the limestone will be nothing
compared to the cost of our mistakes."