Author Archive

History in the Making

Posted on: February 23rd, 2020 by Protect Our Winters Canada

POW Canada athlete ambassador Mark Abma was there to witness aviation history last month when Vancouver’s Harbour Air ran the first all electric commercial test flight. “This is an exciting time to be alive and I look forward to witnessing more innovations in the sector of electric air travel” says Mark. We couldn’t agree more. From our vision statement: We envision a future where we’ve transformed our economy and energy systems and cut our carbon emissions in-line with science-based targets the world agreed to in the Paris Climate Agreement.  We need to advocate for strong policy to support businesses and researchers developing the innovation needed to make this radical transformation.   

 

Inaugural flight is the first step in becoming the world’s first all-electric commercial fleet – story and images from Harbour Air

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – December 10, 2019 – Harbour Air, North America’s largest seaplane airline and magniX, the company powering the electric aviation revolution, today announced the successful flight of the world’s first all-electric commercial aircraft. The successful flight of the ePlane, a six-passenger DHC-2 de Havilland Beaver magnified by a 750-horsepower (560 kW) magni500 propulsion system, took place on the Fraser River at Harbour Air Seaplanes terminal in Richmond (YVR South) this morning. The plane was piloted by Harbour Air CEO and founder Greg McDougall. This historic flight signifies the start of the third era in aviation – the electric age.

“Today, we made history,” said Greg McDougall, CEO and founder of Harbour Air Seaplanes. “I am incredibly proud of Harbour Air’s leadership role in re-defining safety and innovation in the aviation and seaplane industry. Canada has long held an iconic role in the history of aviation, and to be part of this incredible world-first milestone is something we can all be really proud of.”

Earlier this year, Harbour Air announced its partnership with magniX and the company’s intention to build the world’s first completely electric commercial seaplane fleet. The magni500, which was unveiled at the Paris Air Show in June, 2019, is a high-power-density electric propulsion system that provides a clean and efficient way to power airplanes. Today that plan took flight and became a reality.

“In December 1903, the Wright Brothers launched a new era of transportation—the aviation age—with the first flight of a powered aircraft. Today, 116 years later, with the first flight of an all-electric powered commercial aircraft, we launched the electric era of aviation,” said Roei Ganzarski, CEO of magniX. “The transportation industry and specifically the aviation segment that has been, for the most part, stagnant since the late 1930s, is ripe for a massive disruption. Now we are proving that low-cost, environmentally friendly, commercial electric air travel can be a reality in the very near future.”

magniX and Harbour Air will now begin the certification and approval process for the propulsion system and the retrofitting of aircraft. Once the certification is complete, the rest of the fleet can be magnified with magniX’s all-electric propulsion technology.

About Harbour Air
Founded in 1982 with two small seaplanes, Harbour Air is North America’s largest seaplane airline — and the first to be fully carbon-neutral. The company’s international seaplane service, which originally began as a service for the forestry industry in B.C., is now a quintessential west coast experience. With a showcase fleet of more than 40 aircraft, Harbour Air offers up to 300 daily scheduled flights, scenic tours, adventure packages, and private flights. With 12 scheduled destinations connecting downtown Vancouver, Victoria, Seattle (WA), Nanaimo, Tofino, Whistler, Richmond (YVR South), Sechelt, Salt Spring Island, Pitt Meadows, Maple Bay and Comox, B.C. born Harbour Air welcomes 500,000 passengers every year. For more information, visit www.harbourair.com.

About magniX
Headquartered in Redmond, WA with engineering facilities in Redmond and in Australia, magniX is dedicated to connecting communities by enabling an era of affordable and clean commercial air travel with all-electric propulsion. Developed with proprietary technology, magniX offers a range of revolutionary solutions including the 375HP and 750HP all-electric propulsion systems – with increased efficiency and zero emissions. For more information, please visit: www.magnix.aero.

#REJECTTeck

Posted on: February 12th, 2020 by Protect Our Winters Canada

Mont Tremblant Joins the Movement!

Posted on: February 11th, 2020 by Protect Our Winters Canada

Resorts have serious political power – jobs and economic impact as well as a direct connection to outdoor enthusiasts. We’re thrilled to announce Mont Tremblant has become the first resort to join POW Canada and fully commit to pushing our policy agenda and furthering our mission for climate action.

 

 

&OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE

Mont-Tremblant, February 11 2020 – At the 6th edition of its Festival Rando Alpine Tremblant, presented by Smartwool, Station Mont Tremblant announced that it has joined Protect Our Winters Canada (POW) as a resort partner. Tremblant is now adding its voice to this growing movement composed of businesses, professional athletes and outdoor enthusiasts advocating for large-scale policy solutions to climate change. We believe our love of adventure in nature demands our participation in the movement to save and protect it. Since its inception in 2018, POW Canada has focused on uniting and organizing the outdoor community to share a collective voice that drives climate action. 

The Environment: At the Heart of Station Mont Tremblant’s Preoccupations
For a second consecutive year Festival Rando Alpine Tremblant, presented by Smartwool, was granted Level 2 attestation in the Responsible Event Management category certified by the BNQ (Bureau de normalisation du Québec). This confirms that it has implemented targeted actions across various sectors, from reducing its greenhouse gas emissions and proper waste management to energy conservation.

Last fall, Station Mont Tremblant was also awarded Level 2 certification for Performance in the Sustainable Development Management category by le Conseil des industries durables (CID). Its participation in this program aims to promote, accelerate and facilitate the integration of sustainable development principles and implement ecoresponsible practices across all its activities and operations. Vested with its own Ecoresponsibility Charter, Station Mont Tremblant is also a member of the National Ski Areas Association Climate Challenge, a voluntary program created to acknowledge ski areas that have pledged to reduce their impact on climate. Given all the importance of ecoresponsibility, Station Mont Tremblant and Protect Our Winters Canada prove to be a natural fit. 

About Tremblant
Tremblant is part of Alterra Mountain Company’s family of 15 iconic year-round destinations, including the world’s largest heli-ski operation, offering the Ikon Pass, the new standard in season passes. It is a top four-season resort destination owing to its guest experience both on-mountain, and in its pedestrian village. Its view of the Laurentians, the diversity of its offer and highly acclaimed major events – including IRONMAN Mont-Tremblant, Tremblant’s 24 h and the Tremblant International Blues Festival – place Tremblant 23rd among the Best Ski Resorts in the World by Condé Nast Traveler readers in 2019, in addition to being voted #1 Ski Resort in Eastern North America 20 times by SKI magazine readers. With your family, sweetheart, friends or group, Tremblant welcomes vacationers from Toronto on direct flights with Air Canada and Porter Airlines, to enjoy 1,900 lodging units fanned out across 13 hotel establishments, over 75 restaurants, boutiques and a casino, all at nature’s doorstep. 

Join the Tremblant Community 
tremblant.ca • facebook.com/tremblant • @monttremblant #tremblant

THULE CONTEST

Posted on: February 5th, 2020 by Protect Our Winters Canada

 

 

Dear members: This one’s for you! 

Our friends at Thule have come on as our newest partners. In celebration of this they have given us an amazing treat that could be yours. A brand new Thule Vector  kit!  We are running this contest on Instagram and you have until the end of the month to enter! (March 1st)

Here’s how to enter:

We want to know from you:

  1. Why you are a member of Protect Our Winters Canada
  2. Why you think addressing Climate Action is important
  3. Why others should join

Upload a photo on Instagram (preferably somewhere you like to explore and play) and answer the questions above. TAG US in your post (@protectourwinterscanada) and good luck!!!

Uniquely Positioned For Impact

Posted on: January 31st, 2020 by Protect Our Winters Canada

You may have heard us say this before, but we truly believe we are positioned for real impact on climate action in Canada. That’s a bold statement and we aren’t there yet, but we’re taking the necessary steps now to build a robust organization that will be a leader in the fight. 

So…why are we uniquely positioned? 

#1. Demographic: Our colleagues at other environmental NGO’s and some of the country’s leading lobbyists, tell us ALL THE TIME: “you guys have the dream demographic. 73% of our members are between 18-39 years, compared to other NGO’s whose average supporter is 60 years old. Although older members have the capacity to financially support organizations, they generally have formed allegiances to political parties and have a much higher probability of consistently voting along party lines. In comparison, our younger demographic can’t write the big cheques but they are swing voters and aren’t afraid to vote with their values and will also vote strategically when necessary. Simply put, elections are won or lost by this segment of the population. Boom! 

#2. Messaging: Despite decades of trying, images of stranded polar bears and melting icebergs are not motivating people enough to get off the sidelines and involved in climate action. At POW Canada, we believe we can change the narrative of outdoor enthusiasts and turn people’s connection and love of the outdoors into meaningful action – we turn your passion into purpose. 

#3. Grassroots & Grasstops: Grassroots organizing is nothing new to the environmental world and is a very powerful way to create change. When successful, grassroots movements agitate at the fringes of society, sending tremors or shock waves into the middle that, if large enough, can awaken others to the issue and create large scale change. POW Canada is definitely grassroots, but what’s truly unique about our strategy is we have a large alliance of “grasstops” influencers – our athlete ambassadors. They have a captive social media audience that can amplify our message consistently to over 1 million outdoor enthusiasts.  When you add in the power and audience of our brand partners, that number only gets bigger giving us huge opportunity.

#4. Economic: We say this over and over, but the outdoor industry in Canada (snowsports, camping, biking, canoeing/kayaking, climbing etc.) is massive and is a major contributor to our economy. We’re in the early stages of researching and measuring the overall economic impact of the industry (it’s a BIG project) but once we have those numbers we’ll organize ourselves the same way other sectors of the Canadian economy have…to influence policy change that’s important to their interests. 

With a successful 2019 under our belt, we are moving forward into the next 2 months and diving deep into strategic planning mode. We will emerge with a clear plan of action going forward that will allow us to equip and empower our organization and community to lead the fight against climate change in Canada.

Suggestions for Carbon Reduced New Years Resolutions

Posted on: December 31st, 2019 by Protect Our Winters Canada

Canada is one of the world’s largest per capita emitters of greenhouse gases – Each Canadian produces 22 tonnes of greenhouse gas per year. So this year make a resolution to reduce your own carbon footprint and help Canada get on track to meet our climate goals!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHANGE HOW YOU TRAVEL:
Transportation creates 27% of Canada’s emissions, so reducing your travel emissions can make a big difference. Living car free means saving an annual average of 2.4tCO 2 e from entering the atmosphere. nSwitching to an electric car reduces annual emissions by 1.3tCO 2 e, while a hybrid car saves on average 1.1tCO 2 e per year.
Commuting: Walking and biking can cut your commute emissions to zero. Switching to public transit can reduce your carbon footprint by 2.2tCO 2 e annually. Carpooling with just one other person every day to work can save 0.9tCO 2 e. *Based on a 15km commute each way.
Flying: Avoiding a single round trip flight from Toronto to Vancouver saves 1.4tCO 2 e while a transatlantic flight emits 1.75tCO 2 e per passenger.
Eco-driving:If you have to drive, being careful to ensure your driving style has no idling, avoids quick accelerations/decelerations, and no air conditioning while also frequently servicing your car, and having fully inflated tires can save up to 0.5tCO 2 e per year (and 30% savings in gas costs).

CHANGE HOW YOU EAT:
A meat lovers diet produces 3.3tCO 2 e per year compared to a vegan diet of 1.5tCO 2 e. A vegan diet isn’t for everyone, and even just cutting out beef can reduce a meat lover’s emissions by 1.4tCO 2 e! Going vegetarian can reduce emissions by 1.6tCO 2 e. Eating locally grown food, limiting food waste and composting unused food are also great ways to cut down the emissions associated with what you eat.

CHANGE HOW YOU LIVE:
The energy in our homes and buildings accounts for 22% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. Buying green energy can reduce personal emissions by 1.5tCO 2 e each year. Washing clothes in cold water and hanging them to dry saves 0.4tCO 2 e annually. Upgrading all home light bulbs saves 0.1tCO 2 e in a year.

CHANGE HOW YOU CONSUME:
The apparel and footwear industries account for more than 8% of global emissions, and as consumers we have a chance to directly influence this with our decisions of if or what we purchase.
Consume less: Use what you already have, borrow and share. The average Canadian throws out 36.7kg (81lbs) of clothing annually. A single kilogram of used clothing going to the land fill creates 3.6kg of CO 2 , meaning each Canadian could save 132 kg of emissions each year just by stopping clothing waste.
Buy secondhand OR buy quality Items: Buying one new white cotton shirt produces the same amount of emissions as driving a car for 55 km. Avoid fast-fashion: Buying high quality, classic items means they last longer and stay in style – reducing our urge to replace frequently. Extending the average life of clothes by just three months per item leads to a 5-10% reduction in the carbon, water and waste footprint. Also, just like plant-based diets reduce emissions, avoiding animal products in our clothing and gear reduces CO 2 emissions.  Ensure you purchase items that will last and that are easy to care for.

CHANGE YOUR INVOLVEMENT:
We know that to take on climate change we need large-scale action. While it’s hard to directly quantify the impacts; supporting the climate movement, divesting away from fossil fuels, and voting on climate action are also important to reducing Canada’s overall carbon footprint.

GIVING TUESDAY: POW CANADA x ARC’TERYX

Posted on: November 25th, 2019 by Protect Our Winters Canada

Words by: Izzy Lynch

Photos by: Angela Percival

Donate $50CAD or more to POW Canada this Giving Tuesday, December 3, 2019, to be entered for the chance to win one of two Arc’teryx Whiteline outfits. Arc’teryx will match all donations on this day up to a total $60,000CAD. 

 

Chances are, if you are reading this blog you love being outdoors. You might ski, or climb, or hike, or run, commute to work on your bike, or simply walk your dog in the forest. However you do it- you appreciate breathing fresh air and connecting with the natural world around you.

As a professional skier, I have a deep appreciation for the mountainous environment that I live and work in. But, despite how much I love nature and the outdoors, it has become increasingly obvious in recent years that my lifestyle is deeply paradoxical for our environment. It is impossible to deny that glaciers are receding, snowpack is dwindling, forests are burning and temperatures are rising due to travel, fossil fuel consumption and production and consumption of goods – things that I contribute to on a daily basis in my life and work.

This is a contradiction that I have spent many hours trying to justify. How can I reconcile my carbon intensive lifestyle with my desire to take action against climate change?

In May of this year I joined Protect Our Winters Canada as the Program Director. Originally started in 2007 in the United States by snowboarder Jeremy Jones, POW seeks to unite and organize the outdoor industry to advocate for policy solutions to climate change.

POW was initiated in Canada in 2018 by fellow Arc’teryx skier Greg Hill, and thanks to a passionate group of athletes and board members, membership has grown to close to 7000 in one year. We have partnered with the top brands in the outdoor industry and have connected with an incredible ambassador team of more than forty accomplished professional athletes across a variety of sports and disciplines.

As the Program Director I oversee the programs that help POW achieve its greater mission, to turn passionate outdoor enthusiasts into effective climate advocates.

We do this through three strategic pillars:

Educating high school students about climate change and how to take action through our Hot Planet Cool Athletes Program.

Advocating on the impact of climate change on the Canadian outdoor industry by connecting with industry leaders in business, high profile athletes, politicians and bureaucrats in Canada.

Inspiring a national membership base to take action through brand partners, regional chapters and high-profile athlete ambassadors.

Our organization, athletes and partners are no strangers to accusations of hypocrisy. Some believe, unless you have reduced your carbon footprint to zero you cannot speak publicly about environmentalism. We are not the only environmentalists to face this criticism and we are committed to doing the hard work of acknowledging our own privilege and contradictions in our mission. We are calling for a movement based on Progress over Perfection. Change is messy – we all know that. Every action, however big or small, is important and significant. Everyone, no matter what point they are at in the journey to reduce their impact on the environment- can make a difference.

The ripple effect of positive individual action has been proven time and time again.  Swedish activist Greta Thunberg is an incredible example of how one single action by a single individual can result in a record-setting global movement.

Working with influential partner brands like Arc’teryx, athlete ambassadors and regional chapters to capture the attention of the 70% of Canadians who participate in outdoor activities and 67% of Canadians have climate change as a top concern is one of the most powerful ways we can inspire individual action.

If there is anything that my career in mountains has taught me- it is that small steps get you to the top of big mountains. The journey to reach our biggest goals is never straightforward or easy. Mistakes are made, new challenges present themselves constantly and we often meet naysayers along the way. But with time, tenacity and teamwork each singular action we take towards our goal can amount to achieving great things.

Become a member of POW Canada, join a regional chapter, and learn more about Hot Planet, Cool Athletes at https://protectourwinters.ca.

POW Canada X Arc’teryx 

Terms and Conditions

No purchase necessary. One entry per donor and per email address. Donation must be of $50CAD value or greater to receive an entry. Open to legal residents of Canada (excluding Quebec) and the 50 United States, who are of the age of majority, as well as residents of Germany, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, France, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, Spain, Italy, Belgium, Czech Republic, Findland, Netherlands, and Japan. Some restrictions apply. Contest is open between 12am to 11:59pm on December 3,2019. Two winners will be drawn by POW Canada at random following contest closing. Prize fulfillment from Arc’teryx Headquarters by December 15, 2019.

Prizes: Two Arc’teryx ski outfits* available to be won. Selection will be based on availability of stock at that time. *includes Gore-Tex Whiteline Jacket of the winner’s choice, Atom LT hoody, Gore-Tex Whiteline Pants

Get Your Apres On at the MEC Season Opener

Posted on: October 29th, 2019 by Protect Our Winters Canada

Tunes, Ski & Snowboard Films, Climate Change Talk, Giveaways and Surprises………………….it doesn’t get much better than this. Click the icon below to get your tickets to the MEC x POW Season Opener!

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