Like Ripples in a Pond

In many ways, Thunder Bay is a microcosm. The problems we have in our community can be found elsewhere in the country and even around the world. This is especially true of the environmental issues facing our city, whether it’s climate change, air and water pollution, logging, or mining. But just like ripples in a pond, what we do in our own community can serve as an example to the rest of the country as well as the world. This is especially true during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Every April we present our annual green issue to commemorate Earth Day, and this year we’re all about thinking globally and acting locally. From an individual whose community-led clean-up group has turned into a grassroots organization to a family who is trying to eliminate the use of plastic from their daily lives, we profile individuals who we think embody this philosophy. We also look at businesses and organizations that are making a difference. This includes The Refill Co., a new business that sells bulk refill and eco-friendly products; the Thunder Bay Country Market, which has eliminated the single-use plastic by its vendors; and Intercity Shopping Centre, which aims to reduce waste by the collection and repurposing of their spent cooking oil. Plus, Bonnie Schiedel sees how Thunder Bay stacks up when it comes to resource use, waste diversion, and recycling in our infographic.

As part of our theme, film columnist Michael Sobota shares his picks for activist movies, certified beer judge Josh Armstrong talks sustainable homebrewing tips, and the Northern Policy Institute looks at renewable energy projects in the city. Also Ayano Hodouchi Dempsey gets the scoop on Sail Superior’s new 50-foot catamaran, we go Eye to Eye with Roots to Harvest’s executive director Erin Beagle, and Justin Allec pens a touching tribute to Camden Blues.

In times of uncertainty it’s hard not to give way to fear and focus more on what’s best for the individual rather than the collective. And although change might not come easy, it has to start somewhere. What better place than in our community?

Please note that event previews were current at the time the articles were written; however, we know there continue to be changes due to COVID-19. Please consult the organizers’ websites to confirm dates and times.  As we adapt to these challenging times, I am confident our community will emerge as united and resilient and look forward to sharing those stories with our readers.