June 10, 2011
For immediate release
Islanders awarded for environmental stewardship at a ceremony in Montague
Environment, Energy & Forestry
Environmental leaders from across the province were honoured today by Lieutenant Governor Barbara A. Hagerman at the 2011 Prince Edward Island Environment Awards ceremony at Montague Intermediate School.
Her Honour joined the Minister of Environment, Energy and Forestry, Richard Brown, and Alan Hicken, chair of the Environmental Advisory Council, to present four individual awards and a group award to members of the Montague Intermediate School Environmental Team.
ďTodayís award winners are worthy of special recognition for their efforts to care for Prince Edward Islandís environment,Ē said Minister Brown. ďWe all share a collective responsibility to protect our natural resources. These individuals have demonstrated strong environmental stewardship which will preserve our environment for today and for tomorrow.Ē
Recipients of the 2011 Prince Edward Island Environment Awards are Clive Stewart, Ann Wheatley, Karl Smallman and Peter Rukavina. The St. Teresaís Environmental School Challenge was awarded to the Montague Intermediate School Environmental Team which includes Jessica Sheppard, Morgan Campbell, Devin Godin, Robert Villard, Blair Peardon, Jonathan Davidson and Alex Perrot.
The Environmental Advisory Council, a ministerial advisory group, has recognized citizens for their environmental achievements since it was established in 1987.
The 2011 Prince Edward Island Environmental Awards winners:
Karl Smallman is an owner and partner of Triple S Farms located in West Prince. He is one of the largest potato producers in the area and he has been actively involved in environmental awareness and protection for many years.
Early in his career as an environmental advocate, he served as an agricultural representative on the Trout Unlimited Prince County Chapterís watershed planning committee. Karl was instrumental in developing a watershed management plan for the Trout River watershed areas. He continues to serve as a board member for that organization.
Over the years, Karl has volunteered on several environmental projects that the committee has undertaken within the community and on several properties owned by Triple S Farms.
He is an active participant in the Alternative Land Use Services program, which rewards farmers for retiring environmentally sensitive land from production.
Karl has demonstrated that he cares deeply for his land. On fields that run adjacent to brooks and wetlands, Karl has consistently maintained buffer zones and headlands that meet or exceed regulations. On farm lanes that cross brooks and streams, he has worked to install diversion ridges to prevent runoff.
Karl is an excellent example of how an environmentally conscious landowner can make a huge contribution to the enhancement, preservation, and protection of our natural resources.
Protecting Prince Edward Islandís forests is key to protecting our natural areas.
For over 25 years, Clive Stewart has been actively involved in restoring the health of his forest stand in the community of Stratford. Clive has spent countless hours planting native species throughout a significant portion of his land.
As the fastest growing municipality on Prince Edward Island, Stratford is experiencing development at a rapid rate, which is threatening old-growth trees and wildlife habitat. In response to concerns about the loss of virgin forest in Stratford, Clive is preserving and enhancing the forest acreage he owns.
One only has to walk through his trails to witness the fruits of his labour. His woods are thriving, and boast a variety of wildlife in the midst of a growing municipality.
Clive has demonstrated a keen interest in enhancing and protecting this particular aspect of the local environment. With the creation of the trail system throughout this forest stand, he allows local residents to enjoy the beauty of our Islandís natural environment. These trails are well-used by community residents.
Last fall, Clive partnered with the Stratford Area Watershed Improvement Group and hosted a guided trail walk to demonstrate the importance of preserving Prince Edward Islandís forests.
Ann Wheatley is a pioneer in the environmental movement on Prince Edward Island. She is a founding member serving several terms with the Wheatley River Improvement Group and a founding member serving several terms with the PEI Watershed Alliance.
Ann has generously shared her talents and organizational expertise with other watershed and environmental groups. Her vision for a strong association of provincial watershed groups has fuelled the momentum that brought the PEI Watershed Alliance from a dream to a reality.
Ann is a strong, dedicated mentor. A quiet, steady leader, capable of inspiring others in the search for creative, innovative solutions to complicated issues involved in protecting the delicate balance our natural world. Ann brings a gentle, respectful approach to the many committees and projects she is involved with.
Her influence nurturing a new generation of voices for the environmental movement is significant. She has helped many youth find ways to become active participants in their own communities, as well as internationally showing them ways to act positively on their concerns as well as demonstrating the importance of volunteering as a rewarding and essential part of a healthy self and a healthy society.
The L.M. Montgomery Land Trust is a volunteer, non-profit organization working to preserve 400 acres of land known as the L.M. Montgomery Seashore in French River.
As president of the L.M. Montgomery Land Trust, Peter Rukavina has worked tirelessly as a volunteer to preserve the Islandís precious coastal landscapes. Our coastal landscapes are an integral part of Prince Edward Islandís environment. But they are not often recognized for their value to our environment. They are a magnificent feature of our Island landscape and they are very vulnerable to development.
Peter has worked over many years to ensure that agricultural land and the natural areas adjacent to them along the coast remain as natural buffer areas. Through his persistence and determination, the visibility of the L.M. Montgomery Trust has increased significantly. The ability to attract well-recognized individuals to the cause, as well as considerable funding, is also in great part attributable to Peterís leadership and vision.
Last month, the L. M. Montgomery Land Trust announced that it had acquired 135 acres in French River, a parcel of land known as the Ash Property. It includes farmland, a woodlot and a long stretch of spectacular shore frontage. The acquisition of this property will ensure that it remains in agriculture use forever, protecting the views of the land so beautifully written about by Lucy Maud Montgomery. The Ash Property brings the Land Trust to the half-way mark in its efforts to preserve the L.M. Montgomery Seashore in agricultural use and free from development.
Montague Intermediate School Environmental Team
Winner of the St. Teresaís Environmental School Challenge
The Environmental Team at Montague Intermediate School consists of a group of student leaders who volunteered to establish a green space to make the school a more attractive place for students, teachers and staff. The members of the Environmental Team include Robert Sheppard, Jessica Sheppard, Morgan Campbell, Devin Godin, Robert Villard, Blair Peardon, Jonathan Davidson and Alex Perrot.
The students have already planted over 300 trees in a hedgerow behind the old Montague High School. They planted local Island shrubs in a nursery-style bed and have plans to continue the greening of the school grounds when the front of the school is professionally landscaped.
The Environmental Team includes students from grade 8 and 9 currently, and has increased with the addition of grade 7 students.
This group of students has demonstrated strong environmental stewardship by caring for and enhancing their school environment for the benefit of all students, teachers and staff.
By establishing a green space for the school community, the students have not only created a healthier space, but a sense of place in their community.