The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is one of 15 Ontario ministries that is required under the Environmental Bill of Rights, 1993 (EBR) to include the public in its environmentally significant decision making. Click on a heading below to learn about the MTO and its EBR requirements and performance.
The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is responsible for planning, building and maintaining Ontario’s transportation and transit infrastructure. The province’s transportation network has a number of environmental impacts including greenhouse gas emissions, air pollutants, wildlife mortality and ecological effects.
Statement of Environmental Values
Each ministry that is prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) is required to develop a Statement of Environmental Values to guide ministry staff when making decisions that might significantly affect the environment. Read the Statement of Environmental Values of the Ministry of Transportation (MTO).
Public Notice and Consultation
Each ministry prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) is required to consult the public on certain environmentally significant proposals via the Environmental Registry. Specifically, the Ministry of Transportation must give notice of, and consult on any proposal to make or amend a policy or act that could have a significant effect on the environment.
Applications for Review
Under the EBR, members of the public can ask the Ministry of Transportation to review the need for a new environmental policy, act or regulation. In addition, the public may ask the ministry to review any of the MTO’s existing environmental policies.
The Ministry of Transportation is required to consider all such requests, and to respond within 60 days of receiving the application to let both the applicants and the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario know whether or not it will undertake the requested review.
Pending Requests for Review
The Ministry of Transportation does not have any outstanding Applications for Review.
Applications for Investigation
Under the EBR, members of the public can ask certain ministries to investigate alleged contraventions of certain acts, regulations and instruments. The Ministry of Transportation does not administer any acts that are prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights for Applications for Investigation.
In December 2015, the ECO invited prescribed ministries to renew their commitment to the EBR in writing. Read the ministry’s recommitment to the Environmental Bill of Rights.
The Environmental Commissioner of Ontario’s evaluation of ministry compliance with the Environmental Bill of Rights during the reporting period from April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018
Ministry of Transportation (MTO)
ECO Comment: Among the prescribed ministries with high or medium EBR workloads, the MTO is the only ministry to meet or exceed the ECO’s expectations in every applicable category. The MTO continued to post high quality notices on the Environmental Registry, and to keep all of its proposals up to date. This year, the MTO also made significant improvement in giving timely notice to the public of its environmentally significant decisions, consistently posting decision notices promptly on the Environmental Registry. MTO staff co-operated with the ECO’s requests for information, and were also proactive in reaching out to the ECO to discuss EBR and Environmental Registry matters.
Quality of Performance
MTO is very pleased to have met and exceeded the ECO’s expectations in every applicable category in the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) Report Card.
In our annual reports, the ECO makes recommendations to improve EBR compliance and environmental protection. The Ministry of Transportation does not have any outstanding ECO recommendations.
Since 2000, the annual ECO Recognition Award has recognized the hard work of ministry staff in an initiative that benefits Ontario’s environment and meets the goals of the EBR. Every year, the ECO asks prescribed ministries to submit programs and projects to be considered for the award. The Ministry of Transportation has received the ECO Recognition Award three times:
- In 2011, for using bioretention cells and rubber modified asphalt at the Beamsville carpool lot
- In 2010, for green power at the Summer Beaver Airport, the first airport in Canada to be almost entirely powered by renewable energy
- In 2001, for the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake Project to mitigate habitat loss caused by highway construction, and conduct follow-up monitoring