ALUS Ontario East

The Raisin Region Conservation Authority hosts the ALUS Ontario East Coordinator.

What is ALUS?

ALUS, originally an acronym for Alternative Land Use Services, is an innovative community-developed and farmer-delivered program that produces, enhances, and maintains ecosystem services on agricultural lands. Projects such as wetland restoration and enhancement, riparian buffers, shelterbelts, afforestation, and native prairie grass restoration provide cleaner water and air, habitat, carbon sequestration and climate mitigation.

For more than a decade, ALUS has been investing in farmers and ranchers who are producing acres of clean air, clean water, wildlife habitat and other ecosystem services in their communities. We are grateful for generous contributions from government, foundations, corporations, and individuals who, by supporting ALUS, are helping to put green infrastructure projects on Canada’s agricultural landscape. 

ALUS Ontario East

ALUS came to eastern Ontario in 2012. Today, ALUS Ontario East operates within the boundaries of the Raisin-South Nation Source Protection Region.  The program is led by the local Partnership Advisory Committee (PAC) with assistance from its legal entity, the Raisin Region Conservation Authority. The PAC is comprised of members from both the local farming and environmental communities. 

ALUS Ontario East works with farmers and ranchers to enhance ecosystem services on marginal, inefficient, and fragile areas and on lands that can be managed in a different manner through projects that best suit their farming operations.  ALUS participants receive an annual payment for every acre enrolled in the program in exchange for managing and maintaining projects that increase ecosystem services to benefit both their farm and wider community.

ALUS is voluntary and non-prescriptive, which allows for increased flexibility when designing projects to suit any farming operation. The program is always on the lookout for interesting and innovative project ideas that will bring together agriculture and nature. 

ALUS Ontario East supports the establishment, management, and maintenance of a variety of innovative and sustainable project types. These include among others:
•    Wetlands and beaver baffles
•    Erosion control, buffers, and livestock exclusion with alternative water sources
•    Windbreaks and edible forests
•    Grasslands, delayed hay, and modified grazing practices

Overall Benefits

•    ALUS puts local communities at the center of conservation policy.
•    ALUS engages farmers and ranchers as environmental partners on the working landscape and recognizes the important role they play as land stewards.
•    ALUS creates benefits from nature for everyone, such as: clean water, clean air, erosion and flood control, as well as habitat for pollinators, fish and wildlife.
•    ALUS creates real and sustainable landscape improvements without costly regulations.
•    ALUS provides fair market value for ecological good and services.

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