Ontario Environmental watchdog blames bird deaths on the province

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An estimated one million birds die every year after colliding with glass buildings in downtown Toronto. 

The body of a thrush lies on a Toronto sidewalk after colliding with a building downtown.
COURTESY FLAP CANADA

Luke Simcoe, Metro
Published Nov. 3

The province’s unwillingness to enforce its own laws is leading to the death of thousands of migratory birds every year, says Ontario’s environmental watchdog.

In her annual report, Environmental Commissioner Ellen Schwartzel lambasts the provincial government for failing to protect birds from the threat posed by tall buildings in Toronto.

In 2013, the Ontario Court of Justice ruled reflected light responsible for bird deaths can be considered a “contaminant” in accordance with the Environmental Protection Act. Failure to bird-proof windows, for example, was therefore considered a provincial offence, says Albert Koehl, an environmental lawyer in Toronto who helped prosecute the case.      Continued

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