Environmental Standards and Practices for Provincial Transportation Facilities

The Ministry of Transportation must comply with the environmental laws of Ontario and Canada. Every provincial transportation project undergoes an environmental assessment process or review before it can proceed. Processes are also in place to protect the environment when work on the provincial transportation system is undertaken.

Environmental assessments

Environmental assessment is a legislated planning process that helps MTO make environmentally responsible decisions before provincial transportation projects are completed. These projects include work on new or existing facilities, as well as routine maintenance.

During the environmental assessment process, MTO tries to avoid environmental impacts. If environmental impacts can't be avoided, the ministry takes steps to mitigate them.

For the majority of work undertaken, MTO applies the approved process documented in the Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Transportation Facilities (PDF - 1.67 MB).

Protecting the environment

MTO's Environmental Policy Office develops policies and standards to:

  • make sure the planning, design, construction, operation and maintenance of transportation projects and facilities comply with federal and provincial laws that protect the environment
  • provide a formal process to assess the impact of transportation projects on the environment

MTO's Environmental Standards and Practices give MTO and its agents guidance and tools to:

  • protect the environment during all stages of a transportation facility's life
  • work with regulatory agencies such as the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

These documents were developed through extensive consultation with provincial and federal regulatory agencies, internal and external stakeholders and the public. They will continue to be updated as regulatory requirements and ministry processes and procedures change.

Contact the ministry

Ministry of Transportation
Environmental Policy Office
2nd Floor South
301 St. Paul Street
St. Catharines, ON L2R 7R4

By phone : 905-704-2098

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