The Oak Ridges Moraine is a formation of land in Ontario, Canada that is important in many different ways. It is ecologically important to all of Canada because it plays a role in the environment.

When was the Oak Ridges Moraine Formed?

One has to go back 12,000 years to when the Oak Ridges Moraine was originally formed. It was as a result of the reactions of glaciers in the region. Researchers believe that this took place during the time of the Wisconsin glacial period which was estimated to have taken place during 75,000 to 11,000 years ago. During this time it was comprised of an ice sheet which is believed to have covered the most of Canada and extending into parts of the US.

What is most noted about this moraine is the transition that took place of the deposit layers. They went from glaciofluvial onto glaciolacustrine. Glasciofivuial pertains to the processes that were taking place with rivers and streams. Fluvial involves the sediments motion and the erosion factors. Glaciolacustrine deposits are the components that come from the glaciers. It has been discovered that the Oak Ridges core is comprised of glaciofluvial areas.


The importance of the Oak Ridges Moraine was soon discovered and the Canadian government implemented steps to preserve it. To achieve this an act was drawn up called the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Act. It acts as the foundation for the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan. This act came into being in 2001. Since then various organizations have formed in communities close to the region to help preserve this vital region of land.

There is the Storm Coalition and the Oak Ridges Moraine Land Trust. Heavily involved with the preservation of the Oak Ridges Moraine is the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation. With so many organizations and legislature in place by way of the act more confidence is building in the recognition and preservation of the Oak Ridges Moraine