Lake Simcoe/South-eastern Georgian Bay Clean-Up Fund

Continuing to support our commitment to protect and restore Canada's water resources for the benefit of all Canadians

Why Focus on Lake Simcoe and South-eastern Georgian Bay?

Lake Simcoe benefited from the Government of Canada's efforts to clean up the lake through the successful Lake Simcoe Clean-Up Fund, which included $30 million over a five-year period from 2007 to 2012. However, Lake Simcoe and south-eastern Georgian Bay remain threatened with both water quality and ecosystem health issues. As a result, we are continuing our efforts in the Simcoe area and have expanded our reach to the south-eastern shores of Georgian Bay.

The 2012-2017 $29-million Lake Simcoe/South-eastern Georgian Bay Clean-Up Fund builds on the success of the previous fund by supporting community-based projects that are focused on priorities such as lowering phosphorus inputs, restoring wildlife and aquatic habitat, and dealing with nearshore toxic and nuisance algae growth.

The Fund encourages activities in support of commitments in the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement to reduce phosphorus inputs to the Great Lakes from urban and rural sources.

Lake Simcoe / South-eastern Georgian Bay Boundary Map (See long description below)

Long Description

This is a map showing the geographical boundary for the program. This is the watershed of the Lake Simcoe Region including Lake Couchiching and the Severn River west to Port Severn. It also includes the watersheds and bays of the Nottawasaga Valley, Severn Sound, and the targeted coastal regions which extend west of Highway 400/69 and from Port Severn in the South, to the French River in the North, in recognition that this region contributes directly to the problem of phosphorous and nutrients in Georgian Bay.

Making a Difference

The Lake Simcoe/South-eastern Georgian Bay Clean-Up Fund supports projects with the following objectives:

  • To improve scientific understanding of the watersheds for decision-making;
  • To rehabilitate priority habitats to restore the health of the aquatic ecosystem and the coldwater fishery; and/or
  • To reduce phosphorus from rural and urban sources.

Projects must support one or more of the following objectives:

Funding PriorityPotential Projects
Research and monitoring to improve environmental information for decision-makingWater quality monitoring (phosphorus and other chemical parameters) in south-eastern Georgian Bay and associated tributaries.

Conduct research and monitoring to assess conditions contributing to increased phosphorus inputs into south-eastern Georgian Bay and nuisance and toxic algae growth to fill information gaps and aid in restoration and protection efforts.

Conduct and support other research and monitoring necessary to guide the development and implementation of measures to reduce phosphorus/nutrient inputs and address low oxygen conditions and toxic/nuisance algae growth.
Conservation of critical aquatic habitat and their associated species populationsSupport targeted aquatic habitat protection, restoration and creation projects in areas of known water quality problems and habitat degradation.

Support community stewardship projects to conserve aquatic habitat.
Reduction of rural and urban non-point source phosphorus/nutrientsSupport the implementation of best management practices that reduce urban and/or rural non-point sources of nutrients (e.g. surface runoff reduction, erosion control structures, vegetated buffers, cattle exclusion, alternative watering projects and phosphorus/nutrient management planning and recovery projects), assessment studies, and restoration of aquatic habitat impaired by excess phosphorus.

Support the promotion of septic system inspections, upgrades and replacements in areas of known water quality problems.
Reduction of point sources of phosphorus/nutrientsSupport the development and implementation of innovative technologies, techniques and demonstration projects that reduce nutrient loading from municipal wastewater and stormwater systems and other point source discharges.

Support the development of approaches to improve the efficiency and effluent quality of municipal sewage treatment plants and communicate findings to decision makers.

Success Stories (from the 2007-2012 Lake Simcoe Clean-Up Fund)

  • Over 72 000 native trees/shrubs/grasses were planted in the watershed to stabilize shorelines and reduce phosphorus runoff.
  • Over 20 000 metres of fencing was installed to restrict approximately 1 300 livestock from water courses.
  • Over 5 000 kilometres of stream/lake bank were stabilized.
  • Stormwater pond retrofits were implemented in several municipalities.

Application Process (Archived)

The 2012-2017 Lake Simcoe/South-eastern Georgian Bay Clean-Up Fund is in its final funding year and no further applications are being sought at this time.

For More Information, Please Contact:

Steve Clement
Lake Simcoe/South-eastern Georgian Bay Clean-Up Fund
Regional Director General's Office - Ontario Region
Environment and Climate Change Canada
4905 Dufferin Street
Toronto ON M3H 5T4
Tel.: 416-739-5908
Email: steve clement@canada.ca

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