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Essex Region Conservation Authority

The Essex Region Conservation Authority's (ERCA) programs provide a response to serious problems and challenges in the region, such as land degradation, natural heritage and natural area coverage, and flooding and erosion - which were the same challenges it faced on its establishment in 1973. Additionally, issues such as water quality and the Great Lakes, climate change adaptation, stormwater drainage and engineering innovation, integrated watershed planning, have grown in recognition and importance and are now considered in delivering ERCA's programs and meeting the needs and interests of member municipalities.

Watershed Management Services are some of the most essential services provided by ERCA and all Conservation Authorities. In the Essex Region, ERCA protects more than 20 inland watersheds, 232 kilometres of shoreline and nearly 5000 homes that are built in low lying areas. This program is of vital importance to protect property owners from the dangers of flooding and erosion. ERCA also has a role with municipalities providing plan review services to ensure that:

  • new development is protected against property damage due to flooding and erosion;
  • natural areas, water quality, stream flows, habitats, and shoreline processes are integrated in a watershed based fashion;
  • costly remedial efforts are avoided in the future;
  • clear, early input is provided to proactively resolve problems and avoids delays at the final approval stage.

If you are living on a watercourse or in a flood plain, your property may be prone to natural hazards. Before building or altering any structures on your land or in the adjacent waterway, you will need to contact the ERCA Regulations Department.  ERCA is responsible for approvals for construction and filling on floodplains and for alterations to river or stream channels. This permit process ensures that development will not create risks to public safety and that the natural features of the watershed are protected. ERCA's "one window" service allows ERCA to provide permits on behalf of a number of public agencies, providing more efficient service to residents and municipalities that saves time and money while protecting the environment. This translates into efficiency for the applicants.

For more information please refer to the ERCA website.

Phone: 519-776-5209

Toll Free: 1-888-487-4760

Fax: 519-776-8688

General Inquiries can also be sent via email.