Last night friends and environment industry representatives gathered at the BRAVO! studio at CITY TV in Toronto for an exclusive pre-broadcast screening of CITY TV news commentator and environmentalist Bob Hunter’s documentary "Gary Gallon, Eco-Warrior." Mr. Gallon, respected environmental writer, activist, and consultant passed away at the age of 57 on July 3, 2003 — one month after he received the “Citation of Lifetime Achievement” at the Canadian Environment Awards. Mr. Gallon was one of the initial designers of the Blue Box system, and a contributor to sister publication HazMat Management magazine.
Mr. Gallon’s life and accomplishments are celebrated in the words of colleagues and admirers, and in Gary’s own words in an interview videotaped one week before his untimely death last summer. The documentary will appear on CITY TV on Thursday, January 8.
Mr. Hunter knew Mr. Gallon for more than 35 years, during which time both eco-activists helped form the national non-profit environmental organization Greenpeace and Pollution Probe, among other accomplishments. Mr. Hunter and others recalled Mr. Gallon’s legacy: engaging business (giant companies such as Inco and Ontario Hydro) and government in valuable negotiations regarding a range of environmental issues that resulted in pollution regulation and new waste management systems, such as the inception of the Blue Box.
"Perhaps most importantly," said Mr. Hunter, "Gary was an inspiration in that he presented new ways of thinking about the relationship of the environment and business. That is, to internalize environmental issues and promote new strategies and technologies that protect the environment and don’t, despite what some others would have you think, cost jobs."
Attendees included Gary’s wife Janine and daughter Kalifi, former Ontario Premier David Peterson and Environment Minister Jim Bradley, whom Mr. Gallon worked for, and Mr. Gallon’s fellow "Bradley brats" Mark Rudolph and David Oved and other environmental consultants, as well as former Environment Commissioner Eva Ligeti, environment reporters, and other friends.
As excellent as the documentary is, the 27 minutes of footage fails to cover many of Mr. Gallon’s significant triumphs and stories. For more in-depth coverage of Mr. Gallon’s distinguished career, see the feature article "Friend of the Earth" in the June/July 2002 edition of HazMat Management magazine, available at www.hazmatmat.com
For further coverage of the screening event, including photos, see the February/March 2004 edition of HazMat.
Also visit the web site dedicated to Mr. Gallon, which includes stories, anecdotes, pictures, videos, and information on how to donate to Mr. Gallon’s favourite charities, at www.garygallon.com