What’s Happening in the Bay of Fundy? Event Planned to Hear Diverse Perspectives on Tidal Power
Nova Scotia Environmental Network and Halifax Public Libraries will host a discussion about Nova Scotia’s tidal energy sector with eight panelists on Monday, April 1 at 6 p.m. at the Paul O’Regan Hall, Halifax Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Rd, Halifax.
“‘Let’s Talk Tidal Power: What’s Happening in the Bay of Fundy?’ will provide a rare opportunity for the public to better understand who is who in the tidal energy sector, where things stand today, what is at stake, and how the future could unfold,” says Chris White, Chair of Nova Scotia Environmental Network.
Moderated by White, who is a PhD student with Dr Lukas Swan’s Renewable Energy Storage Laboratory at Dalhousie University, the panel will bring together researchers, government, industry, First Nations, and fishers for a public discussion and Q&A period.
“NSEN has strived to bring a balanced set of perspectives to the conversation so the audience can draw their own conclusions from the event,” says White. “We expect to learn a great deal ourselves and we are excited to see how the discussion plays out.”
Research and development in Nova Scotia’s tidal energy resources have been ongoing for decades, but concerns have been voiced by various parties regarding the ecological impacts on the Bay of Fundy.
“We think it is time for Nova Scotia to have an inclusive conversation about tidal power development so we can collectively establish common ground on a sustainable path forward,” says White.
All are welcome. Those not able to attend the event will be able to watch a livestream on NSEN’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/NovaScotiaEnvironmentalNetwork/
Darren Porter (Fisheries representative)
Dr Graham Daborn (Acadia University)
Colin Sproul (Bay of Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association)
Jon Woods (Minas Energy)
Tony Wright (FORCE)
Mike Wambolt (DFO)
Sara Swinamer (Bay of Fundy Water Protectors)
Melissa Nevin (Atlantic Policy Congress)
The tidal talk is coming up fast – so its time to introduce you to the folks who will be sharing their thoughts at the Halifax Central Library at 6pm on April 1st
Tony Wright, General Manager of FORCE
Tony Wright is the General Manager of Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy (FORCE) – Canada’s leading research centre for in-stream tidal energy. Situated in the Minas Passage on the Bay of Fundy, FORCE provides access to a shared Visitor/Operations Centre, submarine cables, grid connection, and environmental monitoring at its test site to tidal energy projects.
Prior to joining FORCE in May 2012, Tony had a 22-year career in the Royal Canadian Navy. As a naval engineering officer, he held a variety of leadership and technical roles onboard Canadian warships and ashore. Tony received his engineering degree from the Royal Military College of Canada and holds an MBA from Saint Mary’s University.
Graham Daborn, Professor, Acadia University
Darren Porter, Fisher & Consultant
Darren Porter is the founder and director of the Marine Institute of Nature and Academic Science (MINAS). Darren is an owner and operator of commercial licenses and has been fishing for his entire life. He started fishing clams, oysters, wild muscles, smelts, Gaspereau, eels, shad, herring, tomcod, flounder, mackerel, marine plant, squid, sculpin, and lobster. He has been very active in shellfish aquaculture, owning multiple shellfish leases in different maritime provinces including oysters, muscles, and scallops.
Darren has done consulting work for the provincial government as well as industry. He sits on the board of directors of four fishing associations, and he is a spokesman for the fishing industry and an advocate for small scale fisheries, coastal communities, and the environment. Darren also works extensively with universities and First Nations.
He has been involved with many studies, past and present, with Acadia University, Dalhousie University, DFO, the province of Nova Scotia, and the Mi’kmaq. His operations are open to the public, industry, academia, NGOs, and anybody that wishes to interact and immerse themselves in the local and traditional knowledge, and he provides a rare platform for people to see firsthand the diversity of marine life within the waters.
Sara Swinamer, Community Planner & Water Protector
Sara is the proud mother of two children. She is also a traditional Mi’kmaq and contemporary pow wow dancer and cultural educator. She teaches Dance 11 and instructs Mi’kmaq Studies 11 at Bridgetown High School for the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board. She also enjoys working as a dance and physical education coach with the Muin Sipu preschool, elementary students, and after-school youth on the Bear River First Nation. Much of her work is dedicated to the rights of the children, to creatively allow children the freedom of expression and free thought forms through art, culture and education. At age fourteen Sara flew to Ottawa, Canada as a Students Commission/National Capital Commission Youth Delegate at Carleton University. Her teaching within the school system to students and teachers alike helped to aspire other schools in Lunenburg County to also take action.
Sara has a Native Canadian Studies Certificate from Kjipuktuk Aboriginal College. She has a continuing education certificate from Dalhousie University in the Urban & Rural Planning Studio. She has worked collaboratively with the Cities & Environment Unit, Dalhousie University, under the Direction of Frank Palermo to help write the First Nations Community Planning Model, which received:
2001 Dr. L. Gertler Award for Planning Excellence
This is the highest award in Canadian planning. Grand Prize by the Canadian Institute of Planners for the development of the First Nations Community Planning Model.
2002 2003 EDRA/Places & Planning Award
For Places by the Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA) out of Berkeley, California and the internationally circulated journal Places.
2004 Dubai International Best Practices Award to Improve the Living Environment
This award was won in conjunction with The First Nations Community Planning Project consists of community-based plans and capacity development in seventeen First Nations communities in Atlantic Canada. It was selected as one of 10 award winners from 680 submissions worldwide.
Sara was also recognized and awarded the 2005 Deputy Ministers Pride and Recognition Award. This award recognized excellence, professionalism, and dedication in achieving honours in the Indian Lands & Trusts Certification Program.
Sara has worked for the Confederacy Mainland Mi’kmaq as a specific land claims researcher. She has also worked at L’sitkuk Environment to promote climate change and species at risk education. In 2016 Sara, who was volunteering for the Marine Animal Response Society, took the call for action to investigate a beached whale in Sandy Cove, Nova Scotia. During the weeks that followed the whale stranding’s a massive fish kill occurred on the shores of the St. Mary Bay and other parts of the Bay of Fundy. As a response to gaps in Provincial and Federal response and reporting, Sara created the Bay of Fundy Water Protectors; a nonviolent social media action group whose mission is to protect, restore and preserve. She is a water protector, land defender, and human rights activist always on the lookout to advocate for peace, truth and justice.
Mike Wambolt, Fisheries Biologist
Mike Wambolt is an environmental professional with more than 16 years of experience in government and private industry. He holds a B.Sc. with a major in Aquaculture from Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia.
Over the past 11 years, Mike has been working as a Fisheries Biologist for Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) assessing the impacts of projects in freshwater and marine environments. Mike is currently working as the Section Head for Marine Developments in the Fisheries and Oceans, Fisheries Protection Program in the Maritimes Region providing oversight to a wide variety of regulatory project reviews.
Mike has been the lead on a number of project reviews for DFO including offshore oil and gas and marine renewable energy development with a focus on In-Stream Tidal projects since 2013 along with playing a key role on numerous other departmental programs such as environmental emergency response and project-specific compliance monitoring.
Colin Sproul, Vice-President Bay of Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association
Colin Sproul is Vice-President at the Bay of Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association.
He is a board director at the Clean Ocean Action Committee, Southwest Lobster Science Society and Wood’s Hole Oceanographic Institution Ropeless Consortium.
He is also a member of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party’s Environment Committee.
Colin has spoken previously on tidal energy at Dalhousie University, The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs and the Legislature’s Standing Committee on Natural Resources.
Colin helped lead his fishermen’s association through its protracted battle with Emera, Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy and Nova Scotia’s Department of Environment over tidal development in the Minas Passage.
His family has fished from Delap’s Cove in Annapolis County for 5 generations and he’s passionate about the people in his community carrying on their way of life.
Don’t miss it! Check out the Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/415627352344466
As the world moves to replace fossil fuels with clean renewable energy, Nova Scotia finds itself with some of the world’s greatest tidal power resources in the iconic Bay of Fundy. After decades of research and pilot projects, however, some people are growing concerned that the present course of development will have negative consequences for the natural systems of the Bay and the livelihoods and cultures that are tied to it. So, what’s happening in the Bay of Fundy?
The Nova Scotia Environmental Network and the Halifax Central Library are proud to present this panel discussion to help the public understand who is who in the tidal energy sector, the history of development, where things stand today, what is at stake, and how the future could unfold.
Moderated by Dr. Boris Worm of Dalhousie University, the panel will include tidal researchers, developers, regulators, First Nations, and fishers, bringing together a diverse set of perspectives for a balanced discussion and Q&A period.
Funding for this program is provided by the Atlantic Council for International Cooperation and Global Affairs Canada.
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