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Environmental Roundtable Summit

On Monday May 17 from 2pm to 4pm, the Kawartha Lakes Environmental Advisory Committee (KLEAC) will hold its first ever Environmental Round Table Summit. KLEAC and other environmental representatives in Kawartha Lakes will gather virtually to identify and discuss the environmental priorities across the community and begin to collaborate on how to achieve their goals.


Listen in to the round table as they connect on and prioritize environmental issues and concerns across Kawartha Lakes. The meeting will be livestreamed publicly on the Kawartha Lakes YouTube channel.

The 2021 Environmental Hero nominations are now open!

Each year the Kawartha Lakes' Environmental Advisory Committee (KLEAC) recognizes individuals, businesses and students who have made outstanding contributions towards helping the environment with the Environmental Hero Awards. The 2021 nominations are now open until February 26, 2022. Please click on and complete one of the following forms to nominate an Environmental Hero:



 Congratulations to the 2020 Environmental Heroes

The 2020 Environmental Heroes were announced on January 12, 2021:


Bee City

Learn more about how we are protecting pollinators.

Energy Management and Reporting

A Healthy Environment is one of Council's three strategic goals. Corporate energy management began with a full review of hydro consumption across municipal facilities. The Office of Strategy Management designed and delivered a training program for 67 Hydro Conservation Champions to begin monitoring and managing hydro consumption in facilities.

So far our largest consuming facilities have reduced hydro consumption by 9.9%.

The Corporate Energy Management Plan quantifies and provides a roadmap to manage demand for energy over the next five years.

 Energy Consumption and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reports

Each year the City of Kawartha Lakes reports to the Ministry of Energy on the energy use and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) of its buildings and properties:

Environmental Advisory Committee

The Environmental Advisory Committee assists Council with the implementation of the Integrated Community Sustainability Plan and monitors and develops new environmental policies and initiatives. Read the Environmental Advisory Committee Terms of Reference. View our calendar of events to learn about upcoming committee meetings and read agendas and minutes.

Integrated Community Sustainability Plan

The Integrated Community Sustainability Plan identifies the sustainability issues facing Kawartha Lakes based on economic, environmental, social, and cultural sustainability pillars.

Download an accessible version of the Kawartha Lakes Integrated Community Sustainability Plan

Plan documents include:

Project Charter

The City of Kawartha Lakes is taking action to transform our Kawartha Lakes into a more successful, desirable, and sustainable place to live. The transformation includes the development of an Integrated Community Sustainability Plan (called Our Kawartha Lakes). Our Kawartha Lakes is a long-term plan, developed in consultation with community members, to provide direction for the community to realize sustainability objectives for the environmental, cultural, social and economic dimensions that make up "Our Kawartha Lakes".


Means: meeting the needs of the present without limiting the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
Integrates: economic, environmental, and social considerations into planning and action.
We need your help: to define the best values, issues and vision needed to develop the plan's long term sustainability goals and objectives, and to define the tools needed to measure the success of the Plan.

It takes a community to achieve community sustainability. It is up to all of us to do our part, and we need your help because, together, it's Our Kawartha Lakes.

Steering Committee Responsibilities

The role of the Steering Committee will be to:

  • Oversee the general preparation of the ICSP;
  • Review and comment on materials prepared for the Plan;
  • Participate in focus groups as Champions, and
  • Elicit broader community interest and involvement in the ICSP process.

To this end, Steering Committee members will be expected to:

  • Attend and actively participate in an estimated 8 to 10 meetings, generally on a monthly basis, devoted to the ICSP during 2011 and 2012;
  • Review and comment on any draft materials provided in advance of each Steering Committee meeting;
  • Participate, as available, in one or more ICSP focus groups; acting as that groups "Champion" before the Steering Committee;
  • While the Steering Committee members may have particular expertise and experience in their individual field or sector, they will be expected to bring a broad, balanced, sustainable view to their work on the ICSP Steering Committee.

Focus Group Responsibilities 

Proposed Focus Group Areas

  • water
  • agriculture
  • natural systems
  • resource consumption
  • human health and education
  • economy
  • culture and heritage
  • finance and affordability


The City of Kawartha Lakes is defined by water. This invaluable resource is shared between the people and the land of Kawartha Lakes. To be a vibrant, strong, and resilient community we need to establish targets and develop strategies to address:

  • healthy watersheds -healthy lakes, rivers, and shorelines
  • water system management - municipal systems, stormwater control
  • water quality and use -safe drinking water
  • Floodplain management


Historically, agriculture has formed the backbone of communities within Kawartha Lakes. Looking to the future, it will continue to play an important role, as it continues to grow in importance and application. The agricultural focus group will examine the following by establishing targets and developing strategies for:

  • local food production and consumption
  • food security and community health
  • town and village agriculture
  • farming economy
  • agri-tourism

Natural Systems

Kawartha Lakes has many natural cores and connections of forest, wetlands, riparian areas and grasslands. The biodiversity of these ecological systems forms Kawartha Lakes natural system, which requires understanding, assessment, and strategies for preservation. These ecological systems are currently under threat by manmade forces (development pressure, introduction of invasive species, global warming, etc.). The natural systems focus group will examine the following by establishing targets and developing strategies for:

  • wetlands
  • forests
  • river margins and banks
  • alvars (limestone plain)
  • grasslands
  • biodiversity of species

Resource Consumption

When we consume products or services we use resources - energy, infrastructure, and materials - and we create waste. Resource consumption also depletes natural systems, often at a rate that cannot be naturally renewed. A key component of resource consumption is conservation, this will be considered throughout each topic area. The resource consumption focus group will examine the following by establishing targets and developing strategies for:

  • Energy
  • Materials - recycled and recyclable
  • Infrastructure - transportation (aging, expansion), public services and facilities (aging pipes, roads, plants and expansion)
  • Waste - diversion (composting, reuse and recycle), landfill

Human Health and Education

A sustainable community is a healthy community. Human health is integral to the current and long term success of Kawartha Lakes.

  • active transportation/active community - systems of parks, trails, recreational, and open spaces
  • population health
  • accessibility and quality
  • lifelong learning
  • safety
  • seniors
  • youth - active youth, walking school bus initiative


An economically sustainable community requires consideration of targets and strategies of the following:

  • growth
  • agriculture, Tourism, and Industry
  • technology
  • employment
  • education
  • health
  • affordability - household, municipal

Culture and Heritage

For a community to be sustainable and desirable, it needs to recognize its distinctiveness, celebrate its achievements, and build on them in every possible way. It also needs to appreciate those characteristics which might need to be better aligned with a sustainable future.

  • history and achievements,
  • identity, distinctiveness, character and heritage (both built and non-built) preservation
  • naming, festivals, enduring cultural and recreational celebrations
  • systems of parks, trails, recreational, and open spaces

Finance and Affordability

There are four pillars of sustainability - cultural, social, environmental, and financial. We propose to use financial viability and affordability as a filter to assess the strategies that address social, cultural, and environmental sustainability. Financial viability relates to both municipal and individual household capacity. The purpose of this filter is to determine whether the strategies are within the purview of the City's and resident's capacity to implement now or in the future.

Each work group is asked to ensure that its obligations are fully met for the following 9 areas of activity. Focus Group Responsibilities for each of the eight Focus Groups:

1. Know: current performance, baselines, precedents.

Make yourselves familiar with the required knowledge to work effectively in guiding the community in your focus area. Your group's knowledge should include:
  • A clear, specific description of the current performance of the CKL community; and
  • Advanced levels of performance reached by precedent communities similar to CKL

2. Imagine: a desired future for CKL in general, and in the realm of your focus group

Imagine an overall ideal set of sustainability conditions in CKL, within which it should set performance targets in its area of focus for the community to reach over a specified time frame.

3. Assess: the gap between current performance and desired state

Develop a clear description of the difference(s) between current performance and future targets in community level performance.

4. Strategise: the ways to get to the desired state

Create and agree on a set of strategies for CKL to reach the desired set of sustainability conditions.

5. Act: implement the strategies

Ensure that each strategy has a person or group within the City of Kawartha Lakes community that could be responsible for its implementation, within a clear time frame.

6. Coordinate: ensure regular information exchange, and collaborate to ensure all aspects of the CKL ICSP make a coherent whole.

Collaborate with the other work groups addressing various other target areas, to ensure that:
  • Unnecessary overlaps and/or conflicts are avoided;
  • Each group takes full advantage of the aligned efforts of other groups; and
  • Overall understanding of the whole ICSP effort is heightened

Kawartha Lakes Healthy Environment Plan

Download the Healthy Environment Plan.

Read the full version of the Healthy Environment Plan.

Recent News

Community gets to work on Healthy Environment Plan
Kawartha Lakes receives funding for the Healthy Environment Plan

The City is a member of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Partners for Climate Protection Program.

Get Involved

There are many ways interested residents can get involved in the Kawartha Lakes Healthy Environment Plan. For more information on how to get involved visit the Kawartha Lakes Healthy Environment Plan web page.

From Corporate Energy Management to Community Climate Mitigation

On  January 1, 2012 the Ontario Ministry of Energy emplaced Regulation 397 that requires public agencies, starting in July 1, 2013, to report annually to the Ministry of Energy (ENERGY) on their energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and publish the reports on their websites. In addition, starting July 1, 2014, public agencies need to develop a five-year conservation plan and publish the plan on their websites. Plans must be updated every five years beginning in 2019.

Public agencies must make their annual energy reports and five-year energy conservation and demand management (CDM) plans publically available on their websites and in hard copy.

To date, the City of Kawartha Lakes is in compliance with Reg 397 in that energy consumption for years 2012, 2013, and 2014 have been reported.  In order to remain compliant, the next step is to:

  • Formulate conservation and demand management plans and to document CDM in a Corporate Energy Management Plan.

In 2015 the City spent $5.4 million on hydro and managed 442 hydro bills.  It was quickly discovered that the process to monitor and manage consumption of hydro was fragmented across departments.  The Office of Strategy Management was assigned the project "Hydro Conservation Champions."  The goals of the project were:

  1. To begin measuring and monitoring hydro consumption in city facilities.
  2. To provide training to staff in the monitoring of hydro consumption and cost and to emplace conservation measures where possible. 
  3. Implement a corporate approach to managing the hydro supply chain for the City.

As staff learned more about energy consumption at the City, the scope of the project expanded to align with the Ministry of Energy's Regulation 397. Including Natural Gas, Vehicle Fuel, Heating Fuel, Propane and Water.  A core team has been assembled and is an advisory to the Office of Strategy Management in the writing of the Corporate Energy Management Plan.  The Energy Stewards Team consists of the following members:  Ron Taylor, CAO and Project Champion, Craig Shanks, Director of Community Services, Jorg Petersen, Manager of Building and Property, Chris Marshall, Director of Development Services and Denise Williams, Strategy and Performance Specialist Office of Strategy Management.

It is commonplace for Municipalities to not have a full grasp of the corporate cost of energy.  A corporate energy management program would consolidate energy related information in one location for analysis and management in a corporate program.  The Energy Stewards Team will compile and begin implementing the Corporate Energy Management Plan in 2016.  Energy is a component of several Municipal Master Plans including:  Council Strategic Priority 3.1.3, Green Hub Community Improvement Plan, Official Plan, Integrated Community Sustainability Plan, Waste Management Strategy, Parks Recreation and Culture Master Plan, and in some of our partner's master plans such as Kawartha Region Conservation Authority.

The recently passed Climate Change Mitigation and Low-carbon Economy Act requires Ontario to develop a Climate Change Action Plan. This plan is to establish the long-term framework for action on climate change to ensure greenhouse gas pollution is reduced while boosting low-carbon innovation. The legislation also requires that the province specify how cap and trade proceeds will be used to reduce or support the reduction of greenhouse gas by investing in green projects.  The legislation puts an enforcement aspect to energy demand management plans and targets as well as a reward system for Municipalities that comply by implementing the "Green Bank".  Municipalities will have the opportunity to apply for use of funds based on energy management practices and demonstrated commitment.

Growth Management

The Growth Management Strategy guides the City's residential and employment growth. Read the City's Growth Management Strategy.

Source Water Protection

The City is covered by the Trent Source Protection Plan and the South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Plan. Learn more about source water protection in Kawartha Lakes.

Kawartha Conservation

We work closely with the Kawartha Conservation to protect our natural environment.

2018 Implementation Action Plan - Overview of programs and services provided to our municipality by Kawartha Conservation.

Otonabee Conservation

We work closely with the Otonabee Region Conservation Authority to protect our natural environment.

Otonabee Conservation is offering the Tree Seedling Program to landowners within the Otonabee Region watershed with a wide selection of native tree and shrub species to choose from.  New in 2018, is the on-line ordering system through the Otonabee Conservation website.

Ganaraska Conservation

We work closely with the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority to protect our natural environment.

Lake Simcoe Conservation

We work closely with the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority to protect our natural environment.

Oak Ridges Moraine

The City of Kawartha Lakes works closely with the Oak Ridges Moraine to protect our natural environment.

Parks, Trails and Conservation Areas

Please visit our parks, trails and conservation areas page for information about parks, trails and conservation areas in the City of Kawartha Lakes.

Trent Severn Waterway

Please visit our Trent Severn Waterway page for more information about the City of Kawartha Lakes portion of the Trent Severn Waterway.

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