Clean Train Coalition Update
Here's a quick update on recent and upcoming activities
Help get the word out - get your neighbours to sign up to www.cleantrain.ca
Make Your Voice Heard! (Yes, you!!) - Only 21 Days Left!!!
Take 5 minutes to register your concerns on the Metrolinx Web Portal – this is the only official way to make sure that your voice is heard. Fortunately, we’ve made it easy! Visit http://www.cleantrain.ca/webportal.php for step-by-step instructions.
We can make a difference! Metrolinx responded to demands to revise the Strachan Superbridge. But we have only 150 comments on the Metrolinx Web Portal. We have over 800 people on our list – take a moment and add your voice to the chorus!
Tell them that you demand:
- Clean and modern electric trains to run along the Union Station to Georgetown Corridor
- No new investment in diesel technology
- A new environmental assessment that considers electrification as an alternative to diesel
Why Are We Concerned?
Metrolinx and the Province of Ontario plan to run over 400 diesel trains a day through our neighbourhoods. Diesel exhaust is a known threat to human health, especially the health of children and seniors, and is linked to cancer and respiratory diseases. Diesel trains will spew fumes, create noise and divide our neighbourhoods. This plan will seriously impact our quality of life.
Other Ways to Connect
Do You Live Close to the Tracks? Did You Get a Notice of Assessment?
We’ve discovered that Metrolinx has not given a notice of commencement to all residents within 30 metres of the Rail Corridor. This can invalidate the entire EA process and force Metrolinx back to square one. In order to pursue this avenue, we need a list of all the residences which weren’t notified. If you, or someone you know, lives within 30 metres of the rail corridor and did not receive an official Notice of Commencement, please email us at email@example.com with “EA Notice” as the subject line.
CTC at the Board of Health
On June 3, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health released a report stating that diesel exhaust is a known health hazard, and its adverse health effects “include increased prevalence and severity of asthma and other respiratory diseases, diminished lung function, adverse birth outcomes, childhood cancer, and increased mortality.” Initially, he recommended that electrification be implemented “as soon as possible.” But, after a series of deputations by CTC members and other concerned citizens, the Board of Health strengthened their recommendations, and has now requested that Metrolinx “electrify the South Service expansion and the Union-Pearson Rail Link prior to implementing expanded service.” We couldn’t be happier!
The Board of Health meeting also generated significant media coverage including a piece by Global News (video here), a bit on CBC Radio One, an article in the Toronto Star, and one in the Toronto Sun.
The Stroller Parade – July 20 (Save the Date!)
On July 20, 10:00 am to 11:00, Toronto parents and children will parade on Queens Park in protest to Metrolinx’s current plans to run over 400 diesel powered trains a day through some of Canada’s most densely populated neighbourhoods. Parents are asking Premier Dalton McGuinty, for the sake of their children’s health, to electrify the proposed rail expansion immediately. If you can't make the parade, write a letter to Premier McGuinty, let him know how you feel. And if you can't afford postage, we'll arrange to pick up your letter and bring it to Queen's park on the 20th. Save the date and stay tuned for more updates as we approach the 20th.
Neighbours Talking to Neighbours
Our Neighbours talking to Neighbours is moving along the tracks. The outreach team has been to Perth Park Festival, Sorauren Tots Festival, BIG! on Bloor, Liberty Village Farmers market and the Railpath Launch. The Weston team is a fixture at their Farmers Market. If you know of an event where we can speak with more of your neighbours, let us know and we will be there!
Toxic Trespass at the Revue
On June 14, The CTC screened Toxic Trespass, a Canadian-made documentary film that reveals the links between industrial chemicals, environmental degradation and childhood illness at the Revue Cinema. After the film, we heard from Barri Cohen, the director, Dorothy Goldin-Rosenberg, the producer, and Leo Petrilli, one of the stars and an avid anti-diesel activist from Windsor. It was an eye-opening time. Thanks to all that came out to show your support. We hope future fundraisers are equally enlightening and successful.
Remember - speak up, speak loudly, and speak often. Clean Transit is possible!