Have you educated yourself on the current climate crisis this month? Have you tried to avoid your gas car for individual transportation? Have you spent time outside, soaking in the sun? These actions all help the environment, in one way or another. If you didn’t know, John Abbott has a great month-long celebration and it’s all online. This year, during April, there has been an environmental challenge called EcoChallenge.org. If you regularly spend time outside, take the bus, or watch earth documentaries, this won’t be much of a challenge for you!
But let’s rewind. We must not forget JAC’s Earth Day on the 18th of April. While the actual Earth Day is on April 22nd, the agora was packed with professors and students alike with only one common passion: the Earth. There was a booth for everyone. From student-organized clubs all taking student actions on campus like EcoJAC, JAC Harvest, and Mushroomtopia, to sustainable fashion experts, to provincial and federal organizations looking for motivated students who want a summer job like Eco Quartiers and the Canadian Wildlife Federation. This event had it all with the Jac Sustainability committee giving out prizes and the Environmental Studies Certificate presenting itself to those who wish to graduate with it. There was also a big booth promoting Alternative Transportation Day on April 26 where students were encouraged to consider more environmentally friendly ways to commute like bikes, carpooling, or public transit. The number of booths and passionate people attracted a popular mainstream news outlet to come film and interview the organizer.
In addition to all this environmentally conscious behavior, John Abbott participated in the Eco-Challenge. This website is global and often used by large institutions to facilitate green actions. To participate, one must create an account. There are two types of actions possible on the website: a daily action and a one-time action. One must explore the different categories of actions such as climate & ecosystems, economy & communities, health & equity, education and livelihood, and basic needs & security. One can only choose five daily actions and they can come from any category, they can even be invented by you! Let’s say that my goal is to always take the bus to school, then I can create a daily action that says just that. The point of the challenge is to participate and check in every day to accumulate points. The goal is to end the month with the most points. Once one has completed any action, one can answer a reflection question that can be posted on the EcoChallenge global feed to share one’s experience. Writing a post every day can also win you points. Commenting on people’s posts can also win you points. All in all, this platform is designed to motivate participants to complete daily actions for the environment and share their feelings and thoughts with a team of people who unite when faced with the climate crisis.
This year’s Earth Month has only been amazing thanks to the people who hosted a booth of their own and took the time to prepare a topic. Those who actively participated in the online EcoChallenge also contributed to the importance of a climate awareness month. Without dedicated people like you, there would be little to no fight for our and our planet’s future.