Statement from Tim Gray, Executive Director on RCMP investigation into Ontario’s Greenbelt land swap. 

Toronto | Traditional territories of the Wendat, the Anishnaabeg, Haudenosaunee, Chippewas and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation – We welcome the news of the RCMP’s initiation of an investigation into the Ontario government’s Greenbelt land swap as an encouraging and significant development. Considering the far-reaching impact of this scandal, it is highly appropriate that this investigation is now in the hands of the RCMP’s Sensitive & International Investigations (SII) unit, a unit specializing in threats to the political, economic and social integrity of Canada’s institutions.

It has been clear from the start that the Ontario government’s removal of land to enable  sprawl in the Greenbelt was a false cover story. Contrary to  messaging from Premier Doug Ford, Ontario has more than enough land available to meet rising demand for housing without expanding city and town  boundaries and removing Greenbelt protections. However, the involvement of political figures and loyalties in this scandal makes the investigation and apportionment of criminal blame much more important. 

Given the nature of the SII, we do not expect to hear frequent updates. However, while the investigation is underway, immediate action must be taken to reverse boundary expansions and Greenbelt removals to ensure these areas are protected from further development.

ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE ( Environmental Defence is a leading Canadian advocacy organization that works with government, industry and individuals to defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.

– 30 –

For more information or to request an interview, please contact:

Carolyn Townend, Environmental Defence,