The Canadian Environment Awards will host a gala evening on May 31, 2004, at Spruce Meadows outside Calgary, Alberta.
A national program that recognizes dedicated Canadians who are acting locally to help protect, preserve and restore Canada’s environment, the Canadian Environment Awards 2004 comprises three levels of recognition: Community Awards, Citation of Lifetime Achievement and The Green Team Challenge, which is the youth initiative.
Inspired by the community-action objectives of the Government of Canada’s Environment Week, the Canadian Environment Awards celebrates grassroots endeavours in key areas of environmental concern Climate Change; Conservation; Environmental Health; Environmental Learning; Restoration and Rehabilitation; and Sustainable Living.
The flagship program of the Canadian Environment Awards is the Community Awards program, which celebrates 17 finalists (see below) chosen by a panel of environmental experts from more than 140 nominations submitted by the Canadian public.
"If you ever feel despair at the scope of the world’s environmental problems, then I can’t think of a better antidote than learning about the activities of these finalists," says Rick Boychuk, chair of the nominating panel and editor of Canadian Geographic magazine. "Their work and dedication are inspiring. Their great gift to the rest of us is a sense of hope, and their neighbourhoods and their communities are better places because of their activism."
The highlight of the Canadian Environment Awards is the May 31 gala, which will be attended by leaders from industry, government and Canada’s environmental community. Broadcaster and television personality Gillian Deacon will serve as the master of ceremonies. Each of the 17 community-awards finalists will be recognized at the event and will receive a plaque donated by Canada Post featuring a recent stamp series that commemorates the work of wildlife artist John James Audubon. Gold award recipients will receive $5,000 to donate to the environmental cause of their choice.
The evening will also recognize Monte Hummel with the Citation of Lifetime Achievement. Hummel has worked for World Wildlife Fund Canada for more than 25 years as executive director and president. A forester by training and a well-known author, he has been the driving force behind a number of high-profile conservation initiatives, including WWF’s Endangered Spaces campaign, which more than doubled the amount of protected area in Canada and helped establish 1,000 new parks. He will deliver the keynote address at the Canadian Environment Awards gala. Junior and Senior award winners of The Green Team Challenge, which celebrates outstanding school- and community-based youth projects, will also be recognized during the evening (see below).
The morning following the gala, the Canadian Environment Awards will host a Roundtable Breakfast for its finalists and invited guests from industry and government. The subject of this unique gathering will be "Corporate Social Responsibility," and panel members include Kathrin Bohr, regional manager for Canadian Business for Social Responsibility, and Idil Mussa, who is a member of Environment Canada’s Youth Round Table on the Environment and a host of CG Kids.
"We are proud to extend the horizons of the program," says Paula Prociuk, managing director of the Canadian Environment Awards. "The Canadian Environment Awards is unique because it brings NGOs, community groups, environmental leaders and youth together with corporations demonstrating a strong social profile. The breakfast forum is an important opportunity for these participants to share ideas about one of the most important issues of this century."
The Canadian Environment Awards 2004 Action Plan for Social Responsibility will be published by Canadian Geographic at a later date.
The Canadian Environment Awards was established in 2002 through a partnership between the Government of Canada and Canadian Geographic Enterprises, which manages the program and publishes the annual digest-sized awards magazines. The Canadian Environment Awards 2004 is also supported by 14 Canadian corporations.
For complete details of the Canadian Environment Awards 2004, visit www.canadiangeographic.ca/cea2004 (More info below.)
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FINALISTS FOR THE CANADIAN ENVIRONMENT AWARDS 2004
The Citation Of Lifetime Achievement
Monte Hummel, Toronto, Ontario
William Big Bull, Piikani Nation Weather Dancer wind turbine, Brocket, Alberta
Science North, The Climate Change Show, Sudbury, Ontario
Eliza Olson, Burns Bog Conservation Society, Delta,
Bill Turner, The Land Conservancy of British Columbia, Victoria, British Columbia
Yellowstone to Yukon, Wildland corridor conservation initiative, Canmore, Alberta
CAW Windsor Regional Environment Council, Auto workers environmental-action group, Windsor, Ontario
Maisie Shiell, Uranium mining activist, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Bruce Walker, STOP research director, Montral, Quebec
Campus Calgary Bird School, Ecological learning centre, Calgary, Alberta
RAPPEL, Shoreline protection organization, Sherbrooke, Quebec
Joan Carne and Louise Towell, Stream of Dreams Murals Society, Burnaby, British Columbia
Restoration and Rehabilitation
Sackville Rivers Association, River restoration society, Sackville, Nova Scotia
Save Our Seine, River protection society, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Gary Schneider, Macphail Woods Ecological Forestry Project, Belfast, Prince Edward Island
Falls Brook Centre, Model sustainable community, Knowlesville, New Brunswick
Harrop-Procter Watershed Protection Society, Community eco-forestry project, Procter, British Columbia
Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corporation, Waste diversion program, Moncton, New Brunswick
The Green Team Challenge
Lindsay Park Elementary School
Kimberley, British Columbia
With an environment club that meets weekly and boasts a membership of one out of three of its 170 students, Lindsay Park Elementary School is dedicated to being green. Programs range from recyling and worm composting to public education, creek recovery and trail development. Currently, students are collecting seeds and propagating native plants for the low-maintenance school-grounds greenhouse in the works.
Social Responsibility Committee
Dover Bay Secondary School
Nanaimo, British Columbia
The Social Responsibility Committee at Dover Bay Secondary School is taking a stand for the environment in and around its school grounds through a variety of initiatives. The science wing of the committee created a wetland on school grounds and planted trees and other vegetation to increase the area’s biodiversity. To reduce the litter associated with a student population in excess of 1,600, the committee created a cartoon hero, Les Litter, whose image and words appear on posters and trash cans around the school property to communicate a litter-free message. Putting some hands-on effort into their campaign, the committee also developed a Sweepfest, where students and staff volunteer outside school hours to clean up the school grounds and the community.
For complete details of the Canadian Environment Awards 2004, visit www.canadiangeographic.ca/cea2004