To: The Hon. Graydon Smith
Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry
It has come to my attention that the Fitzroy Provincial Park located in my Ward 5, West
Carleton March, City of Ottawa is currently under a partial fire ban between the hours of 10am and 5pm. My understanding is that this partial ban is to prevent fire pits from being used during the hottest hours of the day.
The subject matter experts at the City of Ottawa Fire Services issued an open-air burn ban
during all hours of the day because of the dry conditions and the inherent risk associated at this time.
Given the dangerous situations we have seen emerge recently, not only in Alberta, BC, and Quebec but right here in Eastern Ontario, it seems to be especially risky to allow burns to continue at sites that sit in the middle of a forest. To the local residents of West Carleton-March, who are not currently able to have a fire, it defies logic and reasoning that a park superintendent, without the extensive knowledge and background of Fire Services, is able to use discretion in continuing to allow fires.
We only need to look at neighboring Calabogie, only 50 km from my Ward office, to recognize that the risk of fire does not take a break, and that a sweeping ban is the only way to protect one of our most valuable resources. The fact that someone wants to have a fire while camping is understandable, but not a reason to allow fires during an extremely dangerous time potentially putting local residents’ lives and property in danger.
The residents of West Carleton-March take their responsibilities as citizens to protect their
neighborhoods seriously, and we expect that patrons to our provincial park will do the same.
As such, I ask that you impose a strict ban during all hours at Fitzroy Provincial Park and consider following local fire ban rules moving forward.
Councillor Clarke Kelly
cc: Hon. David Piccini, Minister of Environment, Conservation, and Parks, Mayor Mark Sutcliffe City of Ottawa, Adam Bloskie Chief of Staff, Natural Resources and Forestry, Chief Paul Hutt City of Ottawa Fire Services, Josie Grenier Superintendent, Fitzroy Provincial Park