Research Funding




The Aggregate Resources Trust was established in 1997 to provide a vehicle within which certain administrative functions related to the management of aggregate resources in Ontario could be undertaken in partnership with the aggregate industry. Accordingly, subsections 6.1 (1) and 6.1 (3) of the Aggregate Resources Act, R.S.O. 1990, Chap. A.8, as amended (the Act), gave the Minister the power to create the Aggregate Resources Trust (the Trust) and appoint a trustee to look after its affairs. The Ontario Aggregate Resources Corporation (TOARC) was created to act as trustee of the Trust with the Ontario Stone Sand & Gravel Association (formerly the Aggregate Producers Association of Ontario)  being the sole shareholder. Trust affairs are managed by an independent Board of Directors according to specific terms and conditions outlined in a Trust agreement signed between the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and TOARC.

The Trust has a number of purposes, one of which is to support:

“Research on aggregate resources management, including rehabilitation"


Funds to support research projects come in part from income earned on Trust assets and in part from a portion of the licence fees paid by aggregate producers. The Board of Directors determines the level of funding for any particular research project after carefully considering the research project and its relevance and application to the aggregate industry at large. The Trust has supported small projects requiring minimal funding as well as multi-year projects costing over two hundred thousand dollars. Funding for any particular project will depend upon the availability of funds from investments or the portion of fees dedicated for such purposes. The level and duration of funding is the sole prerogative of the Board of Directors.


  • Any person or team of persons who have a bona fide interest in the management of Ontario’s aggregate resources or the rehabilitation of depleted aggregate sites may apply for funding.
  • Applications will be accepted from Ontario-based individuals, private businesses, universities and colleges, non-government organizations and municipal and federal government agencies as well as other organizations with an interest in aggregate resource management and rehabilitation.
  • Applications from individuals or organizations outside of Ontario may be considered if the proposal relates to work to be conducted in Ontario.
  • Ministries of the Government of Ontario are not eligible for funds from the Trust.
    The Trust encourages proposals that include funding from other partners.


The Trust will consider research proposals that will provide new insights into a broad range of problems related to the mining and delivery of aggregates including the mitigation of extraction impacts and the rehabilitation of depleted sites. A working group that considered the issue of research themes early in 2003 concluded that issues related to aggregate extraction on water resources, rehabilitation, impacts from operations and transportation were high priorities for consideration. While the Trust considers these areas of research to be important, it will consider any proposal falling within its mandate of “research on aggregate resource management, including rehabilitation”.

The Trust will fund only those proposals that it considers have a broad application to the industry at large.


  • A clear statement of all research goals and objectives
  • A clear statement of the benefits of the research to the aggregate industry or associated stakeholders
  • A proposed time frame for completing the research project
  • A clear reporting commitment for interim reports, final report, etc.
  • The broad scope of the work
    • Description of specific tasks within the broader scope
  • Specifics of a commitment to participate in meetings or steering committees (if applicable)
  • Travel requirements necessary for completion of the research
  • A listing of previous research undertakings and publications (if any)
  • A list of all project personnel, their credentials and involvement in the project
  • An itemized budget for all aspects of the work including
    • Labour (including wage rates & benefits)
    • Supplies, travel and other services
    • Timetable for receipt of research funds
  • An outline of research study design and methodology
  • A list of project partners
    • Nature of the partnership (work or funding)
    • Partner contributions (funding or otherwise)
  • Communication of research results and any publication issues (if applicable)
  • Any other matters consider important by the applicant


Proposal Overview
Applicant should submit a Proposal Overview to Trust staff and arrange for a meeting to ensure that there is a complete understanding of the nature of the proposal and its applicability. The meeting will include discussion of a timetable for submission of the Detailed Proposal.

Detailed Proposal
Trust staff will review the Detailed Proposal to determine if

  • The proposal addresses substantially all of the elements laid out above
  • Those performing the work have demonstrated proficiency and experience in the subject area
  • The timeframe for completion of the work is acceptable
  • The proposal appears cost effective based on the budget submitted
  • The proposal represents original work or applied research
  • Proprietary rights with respect to publishing are clear
  • The proposal is scientifically sound
    • Trust staff may have the proposal reviewed by a third party or peer group to provide
      input on the question of scientific veracity
  • The subject matter is relevant and of value to a broad sector of the aggregate industry

Board Recommendation
Trust staff will prepare a recommendation to the Board of Directors respecting the research proposal and request for funding.

Board Presentation
If the Board deems it necessary, the applicant will be asked to appear before the Board of Directors of the Trust at a regularly scheduled meeting to present the research proposal and answer any questions the Board may have.

Board Decision
The applicant will be informed by Trust staff regarding the decision made by the Board of Directors with respect to the research proposal and funding request.

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