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climate change2On August 22 at 7:00 p.m. a panel discussion wil be held on the question, "What does declaring a climate crisis mean?" The discussion will be held at the Harmony Centre Concert Hall, at 890 4th Avenue East, Owen Sound and will feature Danielle Valiquette, Grey Highlands Councillor, Dyan Jones, West Grey climate campaigner and Grey County senior planner Scott Taylor and planner Hiba Hussain.

The panel will address the above question plus:

  • Why do young people – and why should we – care about the effects of climate change?
  • Why is the need for climate change mitigation and adaptation a municipal issue?
  • What can municipalities do to support climate change initiatives at the provincial, federal and international levels?
  • What is the role of a citizen advisory committee?

The demand for action on climate change is building in Owen Sound and Grey-Bruce. People are frightened by rampant floods and fires and shocked by rapidly melting glaciers. This May, over 400 people filled the Roxy theatre to capacity to watch the premiere of the film Resilience: Transforming Our Community, produced in Owen Sound by marine scientist John Anderson and filmmaker Liz Zetlin. The film examines the impact of climate change in our region and proposes workable solutions that will involve us all.

Energized by the film’s message that “the one thing we need to do is talk about climate change,” the Climate Action Team BGOS has been meeting to chart the course to a low-carbon, resilient future. As a result of facilitated discussions Resilience screenings, several communities including Wiarton, Lion’s Head, The Town of the Blue Mountains, Flesherton, and Midland, have generated action plans to address climate change. They have either created new groups or passed on these ideas to existing environmental groups. To date, there have been eleven community screenings of Resilience, with an equal number in the works, including Bruce Peninsula National Park Visitor Centre on August 23 and as far away as Memorial University in St. John’s, Nfld. on September 11.

The determination to push for real change has been prompted in part by Extinction Rebellion, a global movement that states "We are facing an unprecedented global climate emergency. The government has failed to protect us. To survive, it's going to take everything we've got."  Local high school students were inspired to stage walkouts under the banner ‘Fridays for Future’, and created a petition urging Owen Sound Council to take action.

The West Grey and Grey Highlands Councils have recently declared a “climate emergency” and formed citizen advisory committees to determine what can be done locally to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change. Activists like Dyan Jones in West Grey make the case that this dire crisis requires immediate action from the international sphere to our individual households. Municipalities across Canada and Ontario are acting on climate change. Since January 2019, more than 822 municipalities, towns, cities and countries world-wide have declared a climate emergency.

To educate our community about these initiatives, the Climate Action Team BGOS is hosting a free public panel discussion. All are welcome. This event is free but modest donations to support the Harmony Centre will be appreciated.

Contact: Liz Zetlin 226-664-0088, [email protected]
Michael Craig 519-375-7925, [email protected]

source: media releas

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