Central Lake Ontario Conservation (CLOCA) is a leader in the science of watershed management and has used their knowledge of provincial planning policy, the scientific literature, and natural resource monitoring, to determine measures of watershed health, establish realistic goals and report on changes in status.


CLOCA has prepared draft watershed plans for the Lynde Creek, Oshawa Creek, Black/Harmony/Farewell Creek and Bowmanville/Soper Creek watersheds. These draft watershed plans represent a five-year update to existing watershed plans. The goal of watershed planning is to provide a framework to protect, enhance and restore watersheds so they are healthy and resilient.

By examining the relationship between ecological conditions and human activities, we can determine how these watersheds should be managed to retain their ecological integrity, and support human health and safety. The watershed plans are important tools to support municipal partners in conforming to provincial land use planning directives to build more sustainable communities. 

Everyone lives in a watershed. See map or click here to learn more about watersheds.


Draft Watershed Plans 5-year Update (2020) 

The following summary information highlights what's in the updated Draft Watershed Plans.

Evaluating and Achieving Watershed Health

Central Lake Ontario Conservation has implemented a refined, science-based framework for watershed planning and the components for this framework have been incorporated into this watershed plan update. The framework provides a systematic, comprehensive and consistent process that links actions to results and ultimate outcomes.


The first component of the framework is a clear vision statement that describes the ultimate desired state of the watershed.

CLOCA's new watershed plan vision is:

A healthy, resilient watershed that sustains ecological integrity for the plant, animal and human communities within it.


  • To achieve the watershed vision it is necessary to identify the components of the watershed (referred to as 'Targets') that represent the ecological and human focus of the watershed plan.

  • CLOCA's Targets are: Natural Cover, Forests, Streams, Coastal Wetlands, Human Health and Community Engagement.


  • For each Target, Attributes have been identified that best represent whether a Target is in good condition or functioning. 

  • Some examples of Attributes are: Breeding Birds, Water Quality, Fish Community and Student Engagement


  • Attributes are then measured with indicators - specific, measurable characteristics or collections of characteristics combined into indices.

  • Some examples of Indicators are: Percent Wetland Cover and Stream Water Temperature


  • CLOCA has identified specific goals outlining what this watershed plan aims to accomplish over the next 20 years.

  • Goals have been identified for each Target, stated in terms of the desired future status of each indicator.

  • The following is an example of a Goal under the Natural Cover Target:

    • By 2040 achieve and maintain a minimum of 10 per cent Wetland Cover in all watersheds.​

Targets, Attributes and Indicators are the basis for setting goals, carrying out actions and measuring watershed plan success.


  • To ensure success, three strategies have been selected to focus the actions of CLOCA, municipal partners and the watershed community towards achieving the watershed goals:

    • Conserve, enhance and restore ecosystems of the watershed.

    • Promote responsible land-use practices to protect ecological and human health.

    • Encourage, acquire and expand stakeholder support for the watershed plan.


  • The intended outcomes from the implementation of each of the three strategies have been stated as short-term objectives.

  • The following is an example of an Objective under the Community Engagement Target:

    • By 2025, CLOCA will engage 60,000 students across our watersheds in our curriculum watershed health education programs.​


  • Actions to achieve the Objectives are identified by the group intended to carry out that Action. These groups are:

    • CLOCA

    • Municipal partners

    • Community partners

  • An example of an Action by CLOCA will be:

    • Develop a Lynde Creek Marsh Restoration and Management Plan.​

Strategies help focus the Actions used to achieve the short-term Objectives. Together, the framework will help achieve the watershed plan Vision over the long-term.


To help you better understand how we evaluate watershed health, we will use one of the Targets that is most familiar to our broader watershed community, Natural Cover
Within this Target, we've selected Forest Cover as an example of one of several Attributes we use to measure change, both improving and declining. Click on the Forest Cover button below to explore this Attribute and the goal, objectives, current status, strategy and actions we are working toward. 
We've selected the Lynde Creek Watershed Plan Update for this example.


If you want to view any of the four draft 2020 Watershed Plan Updates, please click on the link below.

If you would like to view any of the four existing Watershed Plans, please click on the link below.
Healthy watersheds for today and tomorrow.
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Central Lake Ontario Conservation is a

non-profit agency and registered charity: BN: 106887102RR0001

© 2019 by Central Lake Ontario Conservation

100 Whiting Avenue, Oshawa, ON L1H 3T3

Email:, Phone: 905-579-0411