Province investing $7.5 million to help keep communities safe
NEWS January 19, 2024
COUNTY OF BRANT – The Ontario government is investing $105,000 to help protect the County of Brant from the challenges associated with old and inactive oil and gas wells. The funding will be used to purchase gas monitoring and health and safety equipment, and provide health and safety training to staff.
“I am happy to be a part of a Government that prioritizes the health and safety of our communities”, said Brantford-Brant MPP Will Bouma. “The equipment and training that this funding will secure can go a long way to alleviate concerns that some legacy wells may have created in and around the County of Brant”.
Ontario is investing $7.5 million over three years to help municipalities in their efforts to reduce risks associated with old oil and gas wells and enhance emergency preparedness within their communities. This funding is part of a $23.6 million investment the government is making to manage the risks posed by old oil and gas wells and subsurface gas migration hazards to help keep people and communities safe.
“We heard from municipalities across Southern Ontario that they need support in addressing the complex challenges related to the use of petroleum resources in their communities”, said Graydon Smith, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry. “This investment will help municipalities build capacity, increase their understanding of risks, and begin to take specific mitigating actions.”
The government will continue to work collaboratively with and seek input from partners to ensure the funding program remains responsive to municipal needs in future years.
- Ontario has records for approximately 27,000 oil and gas wells, primarily on private land in southwestern Ontario.
- The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry administers the Abandoned Works Program, which supports the plugging of inactive oil and gas wells that are at heightened risk to public safety or the environment by providing financial assistance to eligible landowners. To date, the province has spent $29.5 million to plug 415 wells across Ontario.