Unlike previous summits held in Collingwood, this year’s summit was held entirely online over two mornings – October 27 and November 3. While there’s nothing quite like meeting face-to-face, we certainly had a great time virtually catching up on some of the work going on around the watershed. Between the two days, we had well over 100 participants!
Day 1 of the summit was opened with words from Hilton and Christine King from Wasauksing First Nation. Participants were then introduced to the Lake Huron-Georgian Bay Watershed Canadian Initiative for Community Action and some of the great work taking place throughout the watershed. Presentations from Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks provided updates on federal and provincial program areas relating to Lake Huron and Georgian Bay. Participants also heard about the ongoing work of organizations at the community scale and how that work supports broader lake wide strategies and approaches. Manitoulin Streams, Magnetawan First Nation, and the Lake Huron Centre for Coastal Conservation shared some of their work with the group.
Day 2 of the summit focused on hearing from different agencies and organizations about how they are working at local and/or regional scales to create adaptation and mitigation strategies to address climate change. The morning started with a keynote presentation on Environment and Climate Change Canada’s project to assess and enhance the resilience of Great Lakes coastal wetlands. Participants then heard from the Georgian Bay Biosphere, Bagida-waad Alliance, and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Finally, a panel discussion on climate change including representatives from Severn Sound Environmental Association, Maitland Valley Conservation Association, and Georgian Bay Forever explored questions about what has been working for their organizations to address climate resilience, examples of other communities integrating climate thinking in their work, and what key pieces of information would help the decision makers they work with.
The summit was closed with final thoughts and a prayer from Sherrill Judge from Shawanaga First Nation.
Thank you to all who participated, presented, and shared knowledge and experiences during the summit! Complete recordings of each day of the summit are found below and will be available for one month. Slide decks are available on the Resources page.
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