The Hot Planet Cool Athletes Program seeks to education and inspire the next generation of climate champions.
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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.
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
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!
With the federal election only days away, and strong polling data available in most ridings, it’s time to do some basic research now to ensure you know who to vote for on October 21, 2019. Somehow (we don’t really get it), we’re dangerously close to electing a Conservative government in Canada! It sounds cliche but EVERY vote counts!!!!
Our #VoteForClimateCanada initiative was created to provide the outdoor community with the tools and information needed to identify and vote for a climate champion. To date, thousands of people have used the various tools provided and are now equipped to vote for a climate champion. Here are the four simple steps we’d recommend taking:
#1. Use our simple Climate Platform Report Card to better understand each party’s climate platform: Climate Platform Report Card
#2. Check-out the riding polling in your area using this site: http://338canada.com Use this information to identify the party that has the best chance of beating the Conservative candidate (this is strategic voting).
#3. Make a plan to vote. Pick a time on October 21 and add it to your calendar NOW!
#4. If your voting card didn’t arrive in the mail (it should have by now) use this link to register as a voter – Voter Registration. Alternatively, you can also just show-up at the polls on election day with the proper ID – ID Required to Vote
If you’d like more information, we’d encourage you to visit our #VoteForClimateCanada page which has LOTS of great information!
On September 27th, communities around the world will be mobilizing around climate action as part of the #fridaysforfuture Climate Strike Movement.
As outdoor enthusiasts we believe our love of adventure in nature demands our participation in the fight to save and protect it and we’re calling on all POW members to participate on September 27 (Global Strike).
Better yet, we have a challenge for you! You’ll need a poster to wave at the climate march right? And it’s always fun to get crafty with friends right? We’d like to encourage you to reach out to your local outdoor retailer to plan a Get Crafty for Climate party. It’s an opportunity for outdoor people in your community to come together to make posters and banners in preparation for the climate strikes. With minimal investment; some good markers, bristol board, tape etc., retailers can position themselves as a climate leader in your community and a gathering point for likeminded people. If you want to take it to the next level, reach out to your local brewery, restaurant or bakery and see if they’d be interested in partnering with you. It could be a really fun event and an opportunity to connect with people who share the similar values around climate!
Here’s what we’ll do to support you. Have your retailer email us by September 20 and we’ll send them a pack of POW stickers (for the signs and to give out) plus our Retailer Program Package; posters about POW’s mission, member sign-up sheets, stickers for their front door and counter. At the party, take some pictures and tag @protectourwinterscanada with #GetCraftyForClimate and we’ll enter you to win an amazing party at your local outdoor shop! Here’s what’s included:
- Free beer from our friends at Fat Tire
- Free pizza from our partners at Patagonia
- POW Canada swag giveaways
- Premier of Switchback Entertainment’s new film (to be released this fall) hosted remotely by POW Ambassador and Board Chair Mike Douglas (remotely hosted)
So…….get planning! Call, email or walk-in to your local outdoor retailer and explain the opportunity. We’re in the middle of a climate emergency and there’s no reason for individuals or businesses to stay on the sidelines – especially if they love the outdoors (besides this is the time of year when they really want people in their stores). We need all hands-on deck. It’s a massive challenge but do you never start a hike, run, ride, paddle or climb saying “I can’t do that”? Heck no!!!
The biggest mistake we can make is assuming someone else will do it. IF NOT YOU…..WHO?
email@example.com or 1-833-POW-CANA
#GetCraftyForClimate Campaign Assets: