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Introducing the Environmental Action Committee

 

The Environmental Action Committee (EAC) for District 7070 was established in the 2020-21 Rotary year to facilitate Rotary’s enhanced focus on environmental sustainability. The overall goal of the Committee is to promote tangible environmental actions by Rotary, Rotaract, and Interact clubs in helping to protect and restore our natural world.

Members of the Committee include: Nilam Bedi, Chair (Toronto Eglinton), Michael Banh (Uxbridge), Dan Coombes (Whitby), Jenny Foster (Scarborough), Kelsey Horning (Toronto), Bukola Oladeji Rotaract Toronto), Barb Proctor (Picton), Steve Sanders (Whitby Sunrise) and Fallon Hayes.

 

The Buildings Blocks

The term “Environment” is very broad and open to interpretation. It is often viewed through different lenses, e.g.:

Physical elements: land, water, atmosphere and ecosystems

Environmental issues: energy consumption, green house gas emissions, pollution, habitat loss, packaging, plastics, waste, climate change, land degradation, toxics, water quality, etc.

Sources of environmental pressures: transportation, agriculture, urban systems, manufacturing processes, residential/commercial infrastructure, and individual/aggregate use of resources.

Regardless of how we frame the “environment”, protecting and restoring our natural environment requires individual and collaborative actions among all actors within society. At the core of this effort are the local actions within communities. This is where Rotarians, as people of action, will become the agents for bringing about the needed change.

 

The Focus of the District EAC

The District 7070 EAC is a resource for the District and its clubs in their quest for greater engagement with the environment. Accordingly, the focus of the EAC is to:

  • Be a catalyst for the District to play a significant role in Rotary’s 7th Area of Focus, Supporting the Environment, launched in July 2021

  • Act as a resource for the District and clubs on environmental projects and issues

  • Promote educational and awareness building activities about the environment

  • Build partnerships with other groups to advance Rotary’s interest in the environment

  • Promote policies and best practices for greening Rotary’s activities

 

Some examples of District Clubs’ environmental activities

Some District 7070 Clubs are already involved in a wide variety of environmental activities, and several are looking to initiate or expand their environmental activities through designated environmental committees or subcommittees. Selected examples of environmental activities of District 7070 clubs include:

  • Interpretive nature walks (Whitby RC)

  • Attending climate change and environmental events (several clubs)

  • Greening of Rotary events (Etobicoke RC)

  • Plastic Free July (Toronto Eglinton)

  • Funding of food waste reduction initiatives (Toronto RC)

  • Campaign to build a parkette around a 250+ year old Red Oak tree (several clubs)

  • Toothbrush recycling, Meatless Mondays (Uxbridge)

  • Clean-ups (numerous clubs)

A more exhaustive list of activities and ideas is available from EAC.

 

How can you help?

 Rotarians, Rotaractors and Interactors can help us in several ways:

  1. Share ideas with the EAC about your club’s activities.

  2. Reach out to the EAC if you need a speaker on an environmental topic at your club or if you have any other question.

 

Contact details:

Nilam Bedi

Chair, Environmental Action Committee

Email: nilam.bedi@gmail.com