CVC Celebrates 70 Years of Conservation

A group of people posing with a flag that says 70 years 1954 to 2024.

Our Enduring Legacy in the Community

Over the past 70 years, Credit Valley Conservation (CVC) has had an enduring role to protect and restore the Credit River Watershed. Since its formation on May 13, 1954, CVC has built a 70-year legacy of serving local communities and municipal partners in creating a resilient watershed where a diversity of all life thrives.

In 1946, the Province of Ontario passed the Conservation Authorities Act. The Act was innovative and farsighted. It responded to growing concerns that land uses and deforestation were contributing to deteriorating water quality, flooding and soil erosion. It empowered municipalities within a watershed to address these interconnected issues though a single collaborative agency, a conservation authority.

This made-in-Ontario solution remains a successful model for watershed management, and one that is being adopted by other jurisdictions around the world.

Key Principles

The Conservation Authorities Act included key principles:

Watershed Scale: The first principle defines the scope of operation for a conservation authority as a watershed. A watershed is defined by the area of land where all rainfall, snowmelt and runoff drain into lands and waters drains to a body of water such as a river, stream or lake. This links natural resources in a defined ecosystem. Where previously land and water issues had been addressed separately, the Act acknowledged they are all interconnected. This is the central integrated approach to watershed management.

Local:  The second principle is that each conservation authority is a local initiative created by the will of municipalities that have area within a watershed. This local grassroots nature allows conservation authorities to be flexible, responsive to local issues, and accountable to their municipal partners.

To echo the words of A.H. Richardson, CVC is truly a “co-operative effort of all the people within the watershed.”

Seventy years later, these principles are still at the core of CVC’s work and are reflected in our Strategic Plan 2023 to 2027, Our Future Together.

We invite you to follow us on social media as we look back on our 70-year history and reaffirm our role to serve the people and nature in the Credit River Watershed. Tell us why #ConservationMatters to you. Tag us on InstagramFacebook, X and LinkedIn.

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