Traffic on a highwayThe Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is one of 17 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.

 

 

Key Environmental Aspects of the Ministry's Mandate

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.

Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) Requirements

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.

EBR Commitment Letter

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.

EBR Report Card

The ECO evaluates prescribed ministries’ performance under the EBR. Here is the Ministry of Transportation's EBR report card for the 2016/2017 reporting year.

ECO Comment: The MTO continued to discharge its EBR responsibilities very well in 2016/2017, again posting consistently high quality notices on the Environmental Registry and responding promptly to the ECO’s requests for proof of consideration of its Statement of Environmental Values. The ECO is pleased the MTO followed our recommendation and remedied all of its outdated proposals, and that all of the ministry’s proposals on the Registry were up to date at the end of 2016/2017. The ECO encourages the MTO to keep proposal notices up to date going forward, and to post all decision notices promptly after making decisions.

Category
Result
Trend
Comments
Quality of notices for policies, acts and regulations posted on the Environmental Registry
No Change in Trend icon
The MTO posted generally high quality notices on the Environmental Registry in 2016/2017. The ministry should ensure that it more consistently describes the effects of public consultation on its decisions, and includes links to all relevant documents.
Quality of notices for instruments posted on the Environmental Registry
N/A
N/A
The MTO is not required to post instrument notices on the Environmental Registry.
Promptness of posting decision notices on the Environmental Registry
No Change in Trend icon
The MTO posted several decision notices for outdated proposals in 2016/2017 (in some cases dating back to 2008). These late decision notices are responsible for the ministry’s poor result in this category.
Keeping notices on the Environmental Registry up to date
Upward Trend icon
The MTO remedied all of its remaining outdated notices on the Environmental Registry in the 2016/2017 reporting year.
Handling of Applications for Review and Investigation
N/A
N/A
The MTO did not conclude any applications for review under the EBR in 2016/2017. The MTO is not prescribed for applications for investigation under the EBR.
Avoiding overdue applications for review
N/A
N/A
The MTO did not have any open applications for review under the EBR at the end of 2016/2017.
Considering Statements of Environmental Values (SEVs)
No Change in Trend icon
The MTO provided proof of SEV consideration to the ECO in response to all 6 requests, and was generally very prompt in its responses.
Co-operation with ECO Requests
No Change in Trend icon
The ECO did not make any specific information requests of the MTO in the 2016/2017 reporting year. However the MTO’s EBR co-ordinators attended an EBR compliance information session at the ECO’s offices in September 2016.
N/A (not applicable): The ministry is not prescribed for purposes of this category of EBR performance, or the ministry did not execute any responsibilities under this category in the reporting year.
Legend

Quality of Performance

Meets or exceeds expectations
Needs improvement
Unacceptable

Trend

Overall quality of performance unchanged since 2015/2016 icon
Overall quality of performance unchanged since 2015/2016
Overall quality of performance has improved since 2015/2016 icon
Overall quality of performance has improved since 2015/2016
Overall quality of performance has declined since 2015/2016 icon
Overall quality of performance has declined since 2015/2016

Ministry Comment

The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is pleased that the Commissioner has once again recognized the ministry’s achievements in meeting and exceeding responsibilities in her Environmental Bill of Rights Report Card. The ministry has upheld its belief that it is in the public’s best interest to provide meaningful opportunities for public consultation and to promptly post decision notices to the Environmental Registry. At the time of this response, MTO is pleased to report that all of MTO’s outdated notices have been remedied. MTO posts decision notices as soon as reasonably possible and will endeavour to meet ECO’s two week best practices guideline. MTO would like to thank the ECO for the honourable mention of the ministry’s University Student Wildlife Monitoring Program submitted as a nominee for the ECO Recognition Award. Lastly, MTO would like to thank the Commissioner for her evaluation and opportunity to submit feedback.

To view other ministries’ EBR report cards, go to Government Performance on this website and select the ministry of your choice.

The ECO’s full report to the Legislative Assembly on the 2016/2017 EBR report cards can be accessed here.

Key Outstanding ECO Recommendations

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.

ECO Recognition Award

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:

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