Polar Inspiration: The importance of sweeping in front of Canada’s door…

It’s all about sustainability, but how do we get there? It starts with the motivation to lead a more sustainable lifestyle — a healthy energy diet can be considered a key component of this. Usually, this diet starts in the home. For me however, it started in the Polar Regions.

As a youth participant of the Students on Ice Expedition program, I’ve been lucky enough to travel on learning voyages to both the Arctic and Antarctica. We were less than 100 students from around the world traveling with scientists, historians, artists, elders, explorers, authors, educators, leaders, innovators and polar experts! On their agenda was advocating for enlightened environmental stewardship. It was in these remote regions of the planet, “…the cornerstones of the global ecosystem” as they were often described to us, that we were able to see, firsthand, the effects of sustainably bankrupt living and manufacturing on our planet, as well as it’s wildlife.

Canada’s backyard

Seeing a pillar of ice plummet into the Southern Ocean from a dwindling glacier plays on a developing mind — it seemed as though the world itself was falling apart! It was in the Arctic and the Antarctic that I started to realize the significance of a sustainable lifestyle. After all, the Arctic is Canada’s backyard, and it’s rather large!

For that reason, the Energy Diet Challenge promotes the form of action Canada needs. When undertaking environmental initiatives on a local context, I’ve always been reminded of a saying that goes something like, “If everyone swept in front of their own door the whole world would be clean”. It starts in the home and if households can foster a setting where energy efficiency is customary in everyday choices, we will be make strides towards more sustainable living and sweep in front of Canada’s door.

Energy efficiency is a daily choice

It is this simple act which can demonstrate to our municipal, provincial, territorial and federal decision-makers that Canadians believe in the importance of energy efficiency and that we all need to make daily choices to protect our resources. To those participating in the Energy Diet Challenge, congratulations and good luck!

Photo: Students on Ice Expedition program in Canada’s Arctic.