Sustainable Orillia Hits The Launching Pad This Weekend

By Fred Larsen – Special to Sunonline/Orillia

Have you registered for this weekend’s Sustainable Orillia activities?  If not, go straight to the Lakehead University website to register and make your choice of the Friday or Saturday events, or both.

What’s happening, you say?  Friday night’s event takes place at the Orillia Community Church on Colborne Street. Doors open at 6 p.m., with words of welcome by Mayor Steve Clarke at 6:30.  Attendees will be invited to view the award-winning documentary film Anthropocene: The Human Epoch at 7 p.m. Following the film there will be a short reception and time for a late evening snack, coffee or tea, and most importantly, some conversation about the film. This event is free, though, we would appreciate people registering for the event.

Saturday’s event is also free to attend. Registrants should arrive between 8:15 and 9 a.m. to pick up their name tags and information about the day. We start with a welcome from Stan Mathewson, chair of the Sustainable Orillia Mayor’s Task Force, along with remarks from Mayor Clarke. Keynote addresses by Clarke, Bruce Nagy (author of The Clean Energy Age), and Brad Dibble (author of Comprehending the Climate Crisis) precede a panel discussion and Q & A session. 

Bruce Nagy

Nagy’s book contains a dozen top 10 lists of climate actions to help homeowners, business people, government officials and others make a real impact in making changes. It also provides current information on technically proven and economically viable clean energy technology, government programs and modern energy economics.

Dr. Brad Dibble

Barrie cardiologist Brad Dibble was the physician lead for the Division of Cardiology and the clinical director of the Cardiovascular Program at Royal Victoria Hospital from 2012 to 2017, helping to bring advanced cardiac care to the region. He also has an interest in the climate crisis and wrote the book Comprehending the Climate Crisis, which has won awards and been endorsed by former Canadian astronaut, Col. Chris Hadfield.

Zoe Roe

You won’t want to miss the video speech by 12-year old Zoe Roe called Plastics in the Ocean: What can we do?  Zoe won the Orillia and area public speaking contest this spring with her talk.

Following lunch, those in attendance will break into nine different groups according to the particular “sector” they’re interested in (e.g. Clean Energy & Transportation, Housing, Education, Health and Wellness, etc.) for an afternoon idea generating session. The goal? To identify actions people, organizations, and businesses can take to make Orillia a more sustainable community – in short, to reduce our environmental global carbon footprint.

By the end of the day, organizers hope to have a list of actions that can be taken by individuals, by the community and by local businesses – even City Hall – to move Orillia toward becoming a sustainable community. 

Yes, climate change is happening. Yes, human activities have caused it. And yes, we can do something about it – if we take action now. Join us for the Sustainable Orillia launch activities and share your ideas of what those actions can, and should, be.

(Image and Photos Supplied)

Fred Larsen

Editor’s Note: Fred Larsen is the treasurer of the mayor’s task force, Sustainable Orillia. The community launch is May 24 and 25, and the program is designed to provide local, attainable, solutions for the effects, economic and quality of life, of climate change.


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Also see – The Mayor’s Task Force: Sustainable Orillia

Climate Change: A Learning Opportunity

Sustainable Orillia: The Agricultural Sector

Sustainable Orillia: The Arts And Culture Sector

Sustainable Orillia: The Housing Sector

To Health And Wellness

Sustainable Consuming

How High Is The Water Momma

Sustainable Private And Public Sector Investment