Ontario is imposing stricter rules around the definition of Significant Wildlife Habitat and how it should be protected. Many more species within a certain territory will now qualify under the new definition, which might put additional restrictions on development.
These measures are in addition to already protected significant wetlands and endangered species. Follow the link to find out what will now constitute Significant Wildlife Habitat.
These stricter rules will apply to new projects such as subdivisions, commercial construction, golf courses, large solar projects, wind turbines, etc. Developers might find themselves protecting a large variety of wild habitat as the new rules will spread not only to the actual inhabited area but also to a so-called buffer zone, sometimes stretching for several hundred meters.
The proposal indicated that existing and small residential projects will not be affected.
New, more complicated standards, will require numerous studies to be conducted as wildlife habitat is difficult to identify and assign to a specific territory.