Eight million tonnes. That's how much plastic we're tossing into the oceans every year! University of Georgia environmental engineer Jenna Jambeck says it's enough to line up five grocery bags of trash on every foot of coastline in the world.Continue reading »
Thanks to Grant Linney's leadership, his hometown of Hamilton became the first Ontario municipality — and the 23rd in Canada — to sign a declaration recognizing environmental rights for its citizens. Here are Grant's inspiring insights:
1. It's personal. I had a free-range boyhood, exploring local woodlots, creeks and meadows, and working at summer camps. I still go on wilderness canoe trips. My connection to nature leaves me in a permanent state of awe. I feel compelled to protect what I deeply love.
2. It's community. We have a core group of 12 to 18 like-minded volunteers, with others pitching in, as needed. We share the Blue Dot mission, but we bring diverse talents to our common cause.
3. It's leadership — someone who calls the first meeting and sets an agenda; who readily seeks advice and asks questions; who regularly listens, offers support and encouragement; and who does initial legwork. Someone like you.Continue reading »
By: Theresa Beer, Communications Specialist
The small community of Squamish was once an epicentre for industrial development, so people there know a lot about the costs of cleaning up when industry leaves town. After decades of recovery efforts to clean up from timber companies, pulp mills, copper mines and commercial fishing, the town — and the Howe Sound region — is experiencing a remarkable marine revival. Residents see the benefits of intact ecosystems as whales and porpoises frolic nearby.Continue reading »
Join my sixth round of Queen of Green Coaches by completing this survey by March 6, 2015. Then recruit five families from your networks to "green." We'll meet online, every three weeks (March 3 to June 8, 2015), to chat about waste, food, toxics, community action — and much more.
What's it all about?
I've considered other names for the Queen of Green Coaches program:
- It's About Relationships, Stupid
- How Not to Feel Alone
- There's No Going Back
- The Power of Community
- How to Combat Apathy
When she was just 12 years old, my daughter Severn gave a speech at the 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. She spoke with such conviction that delegates were moved to tears. It was one of my proudest moments as a father. More than 20 years later, Severn is the mother of two young children, and the video of her speech is still making the rounds, inspiring people around the world. Its popularity speaks to the power the young have to affect the world's most pressing issues.Continue reading »
By Michelle Molnar, Environmental Economist
British Columbia's Howe Sound region is captivating. This ancient riverbed where forested mountains climb from the sea is also home to humpback whales, Pacific white-sided dolphins and spawning salmon and herring — and, as might be expected in such a beautiful area, a growing human population. Like all societies, the region's communities must decide how to direct limited resources to their best and highest use. This question of how best to use limited resources is the domain of economists. It is the most fundamental economic problem, yet some community members are wary of the development advice they're getting from these specialists. Why? Because they are well aware of the consequences of omitting key variables from the economic calculus.Continue reading »
Ask most people what's the most dangerous thing they do every day and they'll likely tell you it's driving or riding in a car. Canada ranks fourth among OECD countries for fatalities per kilometre driven, behind France, the United States and Denmark. But if driving is so dangerous, why do we continue to take the risk?
The truth is, many people in Canada rely on personal vehicles for their livelihoods. We drive to work, school and doctor's appointments. People who live in communities that lack frequent and reliable public transportation, pedestrian walkways and safe bicycle routes may have no alternative to driving a car. What many of us don't realize is that access to these alternatives saves lives. Transit-oriented communities have about one-quarter the per capita traffic fatality rate.Continue reading »