When tossing around ideas to end 2021 and ring in the New Year, GreenUP staff combined two of their most favourite things: sustainable solutions and our vibrant community. The result? A topic that is hopeful, intriguing, and celebratory, and that taps into the local community to share hope and positivity in the face of challenge.
For the next three weeks, we’ll fill your minds (and hearts) with responses from local visionaries — community leaders, cultural leaders, and thought leaders — to the question, “What is your green wish for our community for 2022?”
The answers we got are diverse and thought-provoking, but they all have one thing in common: they express their love for the greater Peterborough region!
Below are green wishes from our local political and business leaders.
Happy holidays from the team at GreenUP!
Andy Mitchell, Peterborough County Deputy Warden and Mayor of Selwyn Township
My green wish for Selwyn Township is to reduce the amount of waste created during the holiday season.
When wrapping gifts, think of using reusable materials or recyclable products. Ribbon, bows, and tissue paper may be festive, but they are not recyclable.
Instead of throwing them away, reuse them next year or opt for more sustainable options like boxes and bags.
You can even use newspaper as wrapping paper and cut old holiday cards for gift tags!
Jeannine Taylor, Publisher and Founder of kawarthaNOW
My green wish for 2022 is that we recognize, as a community, that we need to protect and preserve the waterways that we live on.
I have been fortunate to live in East City since 1992. We often visit Rogers Cove, Beavermead, and Ecology Park, which are all ecological gems in our neighbourhood. Historically, our community was established on and around Jackson Creek, Otonabee River, and Little Lake and these waterways are, in fact, the reason for the community being here.
Twenty months of pandemic overuse are readily visible on their shorelines. My green wish includes that we prioritize the well-being of our waterways and ensure that these ecosystems will be protected.
“Little Lake is a distinct resource in the heart of the city’s urban area. Few cities have a resource like Little Lake that supports a wide variety of uses, both on the water and in the parks and open spaces at the water’s edge.” – The City of Peterborough Little Lake Master Plan, 2009
Michelle Ferreri, Member of Parliament for Peterborough-Kawartha
My green wish for 2022 is for the people of Peterborough-Kawartha to get out and enjoy what our incredible community has to offer.
We have the most pristine lakes, beautiful nature trails, and conservation areas all around us.
By getting out and enjoying these areas, it helps to understand why we need to sustain this environment.
Rhonda Keenan, President and CEO of Peterborough & The Kawarthas Economic Development (PKED)
PKED is the lead regional economic development agency for the City and County of Peterborough and is committed to fostering economic growth through sustainability and innovation.
Knowing how difficult these past two years have been on business and the regional economy, it is my green wish for 2022 that we attract a new, innovative, clean technology company to Cleantech Commons at Trent University, one that will drive cleantech research, and create new cleantech jobs for this region.
Stuart Harrison, President and CEO of the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce
As we navigate our way through the global pandemic, I’m reflecting on what got us through it, and I’m not thinking of Zoom…
I’m thinking that our most valuable tools were also the simplest: food, family, fresh air, and a good walk.
My green wish for 2022 is that these simple pursuits continue to work their magic on our physical and mental health.
GreenUP reached out to many people to invite them to share their green wishes for 2022. This is a busy time, and so we wanted to express our gratitude to those who were able to participate and acknowledge those who were unable to find the time: your work is important to the vibrancy and health of our community.
In particular, we want to appreciate Dr. Thomas Piggott, our new medical officer of health at Peterborough Public Health. Understandably, Dr. Piggott and his incredible team were unable to share their green wishes with us at this time.
They have, however, expressed many wishes (and requirements and instructions) for how we can all continue to do our part to keep our community safe and healthy during the ongoing pandemic. Please visit peterboroughpublichealth.ca for the latest guidance and updates.
Finally, while we’ve asked local leaders to share their green wish for our community for 2022, we want to hear from everyone! Please share your wish with us on social media @PtboGreenUP or by visiting greenup.on.ca/green-wish.
We will be back next week with green wishes from local environmental and social justice leaders.