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LETTER: Aggregate association calls on politicians to stand firm with industry

'Local and provincial politicians need to stand firm with the aggregate industry,' executive director says
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CambridgeToday received the following Letter to the Editor from the Ontario Stone, Sand & Gravel Association in response to a story about pausing gravel pit builds published on CambridgeToday earlier this week :

The Ontario Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (OSSGA) is writing in response to the article “This is greed;” North Dumfries mayor slams aggregate industry published February 28th.

Politicians can’t have it both ways. If they support affordable housing, then they must support sand and gravel. If politicians support new schools, hospitals and roads, then they need to support sand and gravel.

Stone, sand and gravel is what our modern world is made from. Calling for a moratorium is like saying no to future generations. It’s turning off the tap to economic prosperity, affordable housing, immigration and infrastructure.

Mayor Foxton correctly states that 5.7 million tonnes of aggregate was extracted in North Dumfries in 2020. That number has remained relatively consistent for several years – but it is slated to rise as Ontario welcomes more than 4 million new people over the next 20 years. It is estimated that a further 4 billion tonnes of aggregate will be needed to support that growth.

It currently takes an average of 10 years to license a new pit or quarry. That means applications being submitted today will serve the needs of future generations of Ontarians. It’s not about greed, it’s about building tomorrow. Imagine what would have happened if there had been a moratorium 25 years ago. How much worse would the housing crisis be today?

Local and provincial politicians need to stand firm with the aggregate industry. After all, they are by far the largest consumers of aggregate. Aggregate is a clean industry. The most significant long-term environmental impact of aggregate extraction is trucking. That’s why aggregate must be located as close to where it’s needed as possible. Yes In My Back Yard.

We encourage your readers to learn more about the industry by visiting


Norman Cheesman

Executive Director