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7. Opportunities/Actions

Water Quality

  • Investigate the source of possible pollutants along the Rideau River and its tributaries and consider implementing measures to reduce nutrient and bacterial loadings
  • Implement agricultural and residential best management practices to address the occasional exceedances of nutrient and metal concentrations in the Rideau River by restricting livestock access to the river, limiting the use of fertilizers and pesticide applications and improving or maintaining a shoreline buffer
  • Continue to offer the suite of water quality improvement projects provided by the Rideau Valley Rural Clean Water Program to landowners
  • Continue to protect the water resources of the Rideau River and Canal and its tributaries within the catchment through implementation of municipal (Village of Merrickville-Wolford, Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley, Township of Montague) and agency (Parks Canada) land use planning and development policies, practices and standards


  • Continue to promote the Rideau Valley Shoreline Naturalization and Tree Planting Programs to landowners
  • RVCA and its partners (Village of Merrickville-Wolford, Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley, Township of Montague) are to continue educating landowners about the value and importance of headwater drainage features, natural shorelines and waterfront property best management practices with respect to shoreline use and development, septic system installation and maintenance and shoreline vegetation retention and enhancement
  • Protect the riparian buffer along the shoreline of the Rideau River and catchment streams (headwaters) during the development approvals process through adherence to and enforcement of municipal land-use policies and zoning standards
  • Target shoreline restoration at sites identified in this report (shown as “Other riparian land cover” in Figure 12 and “Potential Riparian/Shoreline Restoration” in Figure 23) and explore other restoration and enhancement opportunities along the Rideau River and its tributaries


  • Collectively work with approval authorities (Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley, Village of Merrickville-Wolford, Conservation Authority, the Health Unit and Mississippi-Rideau Septic System Office) to consistently implement current land use planning and development policies for water quality and shoreline protection adjacent to the Rideau River and Canal and other catchment streams (i.e., to attain a minimum 30 metre development setback from water)
  • Explore ways and means to more effectively enforce and implement conditions of land-use planning and development approval to achieve net environmental gains (particularly with respect to rehabilitating or protecting naturally vegetated shorelines and water quality)
  • Encourage Committees of Adjustment to take advantage of technical and environmental information and recommendations forthcoming from planning and environmental professionals
  • Municipalities and agencies are encouraged to strengthen natural heritage and water resources official plan policies and zoning provisions (water setbacks, frontage and naturalized shorelines and wetland protection) where deemed appropriate
  • Utilize RVCA subwatershed and catchment reports to help develop/revise official plan policies to protect surface water resources and the natural environment (including woodlands, wetlands and shoreline cover)
  • Consider establishing RVCA regulations limits to protect additional wetlands

Natural Hazards

  • RVCA provides ongoing “hazardous lands management” support to the Township of Montague and Village of Merrickville-Wolford through its Hazardous Lands (flood plain, unstable slope) Management Program. In this catchment, this will require that updated floodplain mapping be prepared for the reach of the Rideau River extending from Smiths Falls to Burritts Rapids