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OSSGA UpdatesIndustry News Partners | Events |  Environmental

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This issue contains articles that your Operations, HR, Compliance and Environmental employees may be interested in!

OSSGA Updates

Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act (ESTMA) Guidance and Technical Reporting Specifications

Save the date:  As reported in the last issue of Rock Talk – Natural Resources Canada will be coming to the OSSGA office on December 7th at 9:00 a.m. to deliver a session on ESTMA.  

If you are a public company – or a company where two out of three of these bullets apply:

  • Assets of more than $20 million dollars
  • Revenues of more than $40 million dollars
  • An average of more than 250 employees

You need to find out how to ensure you are in compliance with this new federal legislation.

Register here

The Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act (ESTMA), brought into force June 1st, 2015, applies not only to companies that mine for gold, silver and diamonds, but also producers of sand, salt, gravel and limestone. The Government of Canada has developed guidance and technical reporting specification documents to help companies to prepare a report. For most companies, their first report is due by May, 2017 reporting on payments made in 2016.


OSSGA Coordinated Provincial Plan Review Submission

The Province of Ontario released its proposed changes to the Niagara Escarpment Plan, the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan, the Greenbelt Plan and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe.  Comments on the proposed changes are due by October 31, 2016.

OSSGA has prepared a comprehensive set of comments that are available for download here.

Members are invited to use these comments as they prepare their own submissions to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs.  Areas of particular concern include:

  • The expansion of the provincial natural heritage system beyond the Greenbelt Plan, Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan and Niagara Escarpment Plan;
  • Prohibiting new mineral aggregate within significant woodlands without consideration of the 'no negative impact test';
  • Prohibiting new mineral aggregate operations within endangered and threatened species habitat without consideration of the provisions of the Endangered Species Act;
  • Discouraging extraction within Prime Agricultural Areas and requiring rehabilitation back to agriculture (which by definition will prohibit  below water extraction  within these areas of the GGH);
  • Mapping and policy changes to the Niagara Escarpment Plan that will significantly restrict where new aggregate operations may be considered; and,
  • Having the changes take effect immediately - which will effectively result in any outstanding licence application that have not yet been approved.

For convenience the most current government information on the Ministry’s website can be found here.

Please don’t hesitate to contact Mike Scott or 647 727 8780 if you have any questions or if OSSGA can be of any help as you prepare your own submission.


OSSGA Meeting with Minister Del Duca

OSSGA’s Chair and a number of producers met with Minister Del Duca on Thursday, October 27th to discuss the axle weight issue.  The purpose of the meeting was to inform the Minister of OSSGA’s desire for clarity, consistency and transparency in the resolution of this matter.  The goal for the Association is to have clear, workable guidelines, that allow producers and truckers to work safely and efficiently with confidence.  The meeting was very positive.  Joint working groups have been created and OSSGA is working hard to ensure that a permanent solution is found.


Final Week – get your submissions in to this year’s award season!

The OSSGA  Industry Recognition Awards Program recognizes a wide range of activities that contribute to a progressive image of our member aggregate producers and the aggregate industry as a whole.  A key goal is to raise the bar in the industry by highlighting operations that go above and beyond what is required by legislation. Each of the awards is described briefly on our website, and members are invited to download a copy of OSSGA Industry Recognition Awards Program Guide for full details of submission requirements.  This year, award submissions are being accepted on-line, so uploading your photos and submissions will be fast and easy.  If you have any questions about the awards, please contact Ashlee Zelek at or at 647 727 8778.  Submissions are due November 1st.

Industry News

Canadian cities push back on plans for infrastructure bank

Canada’s municipalities are pushing back against plans for a $40-billion federal infrastructure bank, warning Ottawa that it should not be capitalized with the billions of dollars the Liberals have already promised cities for transit, bridges and other projects. Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s advisory council on economic growth – which has worked directly with top federal officials for months – released a report last week calling for the creation of a new infrastructure development bank that would bring public and private money together to build major projects across the country.


Province proposes limiting powers of Ontario Municipal Board

The province is proposing putting new limits on the controversial and powerful appeals body that oversees land use in Ontario. After launching a review of the Ontario Municipal Board earlier this summer, Minister of Municipal Affairs Bill Mauro said Wednesday the review will address criticism that the board often ignores planning decisions made at the local level. “We are going to try as best we’re able through the proposed changes that we’re putting forward to show more deference for local, municipal decision-making,” Mauro said at a news conference at Queen’s Park. Note: OSSGA’s Land Use Planning Committee is currently working on OSSGA’s response to the OMB review. Contact Mike Scott for additional details


Reform that Works: A Call for Evidence-Based Workplace Law Modernization in Ontario

OSSGA has been following work being conducted by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce with respect to recommendations for changes to the Employment Standards Act, 2000: Over the past year, the Keep Ontario Working group of leading employers and sector associations in Ontario has worked to promote the need for evidence-based labour policies that strengthen, rather than compromise, the ability of employers to create jobs and grow the provincial economy. The formal submission, Reform That Works, constitutes the group’s response to the Changing Workplaces Review Interim Report prepared by Special Advisors C. Michael Mitchell and John C. Murray. The Interim Report proposes numerous recommendations for legislative change of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) and the Labour Relations Act, 1995 (LRA). The scope of the changes proposed by the Special Advisors is immense and will impact nearly every aspect of the relationship between employers and employees in Ontario.  For more info click read more…

Partner Corner

MAAP Project 15-11: Township of Arthur, Wellington County

What aggregate pit? This legacy pit was 0.8 ha of unusable scrub.  MAAP was able to blend the old pit into the surrounding agriculture field so that it too could be farmed.


The Ontario Aggregate Resources Corporation (TOARC) in their MAAP program brings new life to legacy aggregate sites, as well as some of the progressive and final rehabilitation that is being done at licensed sites. Click read more for the before and afters!


Must see video 1: Make the Link to Video Products (Britain)

The UK Mineral Products Association has refreshed its  campaign to raise awareness of the industry and the contribution it makes to the economy and quality of life. It has produced a new film, ‘Make the Link to Mineral Products’, available on its website and shown here.  This showcases industry achievements across the board and supports them with key industry facts and statistics. Further tools are planned for release over the coming months to help its members communicate and inform local stakeholders.


Must see video 2:  How quarries benefit Australia

This short video from Australia provides a creative overview of the aggregate process.  The website offers additional information on a wide variety of processes and also provides lots of statistics and information.


Grant Arland Bacchus

OSSGA is sad to report the passing of Grant Arland Bacchus.   While in generally good health until recently, Grant passed away last week at the age of 87. Grant did a lot of work for the industry as a traffic consultant and would be known by many of the OSSGA members.  There was a small family service last weekend, and a celebration of life will follow later sometime in November (details to follow).  His obituary is posted under read more below.  Our condolences and warm wishes go out to his family.


Aggregates 101

OSSGA invites you and your staff to attend the Aggregates 101 Training on October 18, 2016.  Space is limited and we often sell out. Content for the training includes the a to z of the business:  Definitions - sand & gravel, quarry, recycled aggregate, products and more; different uses of material; importance of aggregate industry to communities; aggregate licensing; compliance; health and safety; staffing; delivery of product; aggregate processing including stripping, drilling, blasting, crushing and more; quality control and  specifications; controls, obligations and best practices.  Price includes refreshments all day, lunch and copies of handouts.

November 2nd
Sudbury, ON
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Generic Supervisor Training Course
November 14th,  Mississauga

This program is intended for supervisors directly employed by a surface mining company.  Topics include: Follow Safety Program, Prepare for Emergencies, Follow Health & Hygiene, Practice Effective Communication, Manage Work Area Activities and Manage Employees.

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OSSGA Common Core Training
November 17th, Mississauga
Hurry – limited spaces!

The Occupational Health and Safety Act requires that anyone working on a surface mining site must have this important training!  Modules include core knowledge, fire extinguisher procedures, personal accountability, operating tools, PPE, basic medical emergencies and more…

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Environmental Management at Pits & Quarries
November 22 and 23, Mississauga

Back by popular demand – an up-to-date overview of the current environment management requirements of a pit or quarry from industry experts. Perfect for those responsible for environmental compliance but also great for Operations Managers and New Employees! If you haven’t already attended this event in the past then save-the-date, you don’t want to miss out. Stay-tuned for new agenda items including presentations from regulators.

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Book Your Rooms Early for two great events in 2017!

January 25 – 26, 2017 Operations, Health and Safety Seminar Hotel Room Block at the Marriott Toronto Airport Hotel - $152 a night plus tax. Book here

Attention Exhibitors/Sponsors:  Booth Booking and Sponsorship will be launched on Tuesday, November 1st.  Booths sell out quickly so make sure to register on-line!

OSSGA Conference and AGM will be held at the Westin Ottawa, February 15 – 17, 2017.  Come early to enjoy Winterlude, stay later for the family day long weekend! - $199 a night plus tax. Book here

Environmental Bill of Rights Posting

EBR # 012-8002 The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has released a Discussion Guide to Review Ontario’s Environmental Bill of Rights and Regulations and Consideration of Ontarians’ Environmental Rights. The discussion guide has been posted to the environmental registry for a 120-day review period, here. Comments may be submitted until November 8, 2016.

Ontario’s Environmental Bill of Rights, 1993 (EBR) protects the environment by ensuring that the public is informed, engaged and consulted on matters of environmental significance. Ontario is a leading Canadian jurisdiction in the promotion of environmental rights due in part to the vision and requirements outlined in the EBR. The act is administered by the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change. Under the EBR, Ontarians have the right to request a minister review an existing act, regulation, policy or instrument to protect the environment. The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change received an application for a review of the EBR itself and has agreed to examine certain components of the act. As part of this review, the ministry is seeking public feedback on select parts of the EBR through a discussion guide. The discussion guide provides an overview of the relevant sections of the EBR as well as a series of questions to help you consider the issues. Links to the discussion guide, the full text of the EBR and the EBR regulations are provided.

EBR # 012-4464 The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) has released a Wetland Conservation Strategy for Ontario 2016-2030. The proposed strategy  has been posted to the environmental registry for a 100-day public review period, here. Comments may be submitted until November 16, 2016.

Building on the input received from a variety of stakeholders and other partners, the MNRF has developed A Wetland Conservation Strategy for Ontario 2016-2030. The proposed Wetland Conservation Strategy for Ontario represents a guiding framework for coordinating the conservation of Ontario's wetlands across the province.  It includes a clear vision, goals and outcomes for wetlands in Ontario and sets out a series of actions the government will incrementally undertake over the next 15 years to improve wetland conservation.

EBR # 012-8249  The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is developing a Wildlife Management Strategy. The proposed strategy has been posted to the environmental registry for a 90-day public review period, here. Comments may be submitted until November 17, 2016.

Ontario’s wildlife provides ecological, cultural, recreational and economic benefits to all Ontarians, and is a key component of the province’s rich biodiversity. Many influences affecting wildlife and their habitat operate at broad scales. Environmental factors, including climate change, cause complex and cumulative impacts on wildlife. To ensure Ontario is well placed to address broad scale pressures facing wildlife populations, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is developing a Wildlife Management Strategy. Currently, Ontario does not have an overarching guiding framework that informs wildlife policy development, planning, management and decision making. A wildlife management strategy would provide clear direction for wildlife management, while building on the ministry’s strong foundation of science, policy and collaboration. Building a Wildlife Management Strategy for Ontario, a discussion paper is intended to solicit a broad range of perspectives to assist in the development of a wildlife management strategy for Ontario.

EBR # 012-8468 The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) is developing an Agricultural Soil Health and Conservation Strategy. The proposed strategy has been posted to the environmental registry for a 90-day public review period, here. Comments may be submitted until November 27, 2016.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) is developing an Agricultural Soil Health and Conservation Strategy. Specifically, OMAFRA is seeking feedback on a Discussion Document that outlines a draft vision, goals and objectives for the strategy. Healthy agricultural soils are essential in order to ensure ongoing productivity and competitiveness in Ontario’s agri-food sector as well as food security for the province and the world. Both security of food supply and nutritional quality of foods can, in part, be influenced by soil health. Soil health, climate change, water quality and food security are all linked together. These issues all reflect our need to evolve toward a sustainable and low-carbon economy. The soil strategy will support agricultural soil management practices that provide economic, environmental and social benefits to Ontario.

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