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Saving the Planet One Story at a Time
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By: Aviva Friedman

Imagine touring North America in close quarters with 13 other adults, for over 3 months.

It might not sound like the coziest of experiences, but it’s a once-in-a-lifetime journey that the Expedition Blue Planet team has set upon to bring awareness to local water issues spanning the continent.

I was contacted by Jonathan Smith, CEO of the non-profit Blue Legacy International, who offered us a sneak peek into the world of Expedition Blue Planet.

The team is led by Executive Producer and emerging explorer, Alexandra Cousteau, granddaughter of the legendary Jacques-Yves Cousteau.

We were thrilled to learn that their project, a cousin of sorts to ours at GreenHeroes.tv, was landing in Toronto. We capture stories of “everyday heroes” to help change the world. They travel around North America, documenting “mainstream” local stories, the type of “in my backyard” stuff that sparks viewers into action.

How do they inspire people to take action on water issues? The team visits communities, interviews civilians and scientists, researches various histories of waterways, and weaves together stories to create a vibrant dialogue on water.

They believe, like we do, that mainstream folks are the change-makers.

We were eager to learn more about the project and to meet the crew of the Expedition Blue Planet team, so we spent a sunny day out at the Evergreen Brick Works to chat with Alexandra and Jonathan. Me and my team got a sneak peek inside their massive tour bus (formerly belonging to presidential candidate John McCain!) that they had converted to biodiesel just for their tour.

The most remarkable feature of the bus is their editing room. These techno-whizzes edit on the fly, creating short documentary clips to capture the stories at each major location they visit, from the Colorado River to the Gulf of Mexico. You can watch them all here, follow their progress through the St. Lawrence and see the completion of their journey on Facebook and Twitter.

They’re nearing the end of their journey now, but they’ve come a long way, met a lot of people, and seen some incredible stories about local water. You’ve got to see how it all started and what the tour is all about:

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, you can make a difference in your backyard. What actions are you taking to make a difference in your community? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

Community Clean-up
18Oct
2010

Looking for ways to get involved, right now, in your own backyard? A great way to get started is to join (or start!) your own community clean-up.

An awesome example of communities coming together to clean up is The Great Canadian Shoreline Clean-up, which happens every September and October, as thousands of volunteers across Canada clean-up their local shorelines.

If you want to have a say in your community but you’re not politically active, we think this is one of the greatest ways to get your feet wet and take action in your backyard. We’ve got some other ideas on how to take action here!

Here’s Alexandra Cousteau, granddaughter of the legendary Jacques Cousteau and expedition leader of Blue Legacy International, explaining why you should get involved in a shoreline cleanup. Stay tuned for more on Alexandra Cousteau coming soon!

Besides shoreline cleanups, it’s an annual Earth Day tradition on April 24th for people to clean up their communities, and you’re sure to find projects in your city or town as the date approaches.

But, what’s stopping us from acting right now? All it takes is a few simple things and before you know it, you’ll have your very own community clean up.

What you’ll need:

Garbage bags (we at GreenHeroes recommend using garbage bags made from recycled materials), gardening gloves, shovels, buckets, drinks and snacks. Skip the bottled water and fill everyone’s reusable bottle with some tap water.

Step 1

Form a group of friends, or advertise online and with posters in your neighbourhood to form a group.

Step 2

Choose a clean-up location – like a park, a beach, or any other particularly messy parts near you.

Step 3

Pick-up supplies. A lot of cities will actually provide the supplies if you register your cleanup with them! Examples include Toronto, Kitchener, Ottawa and Halifax.

Step 4

Get cleaning!

Want to be a part of something even bigger? Register your community clean up with the worldwide network of community cleanups, through the United Nations Environment Program’s Clean Up the World campaign.

The project is an online social organizing network that helps local groups around the world connect, share their ideas, and be inspired to take action in your own backyard! Of course, we’ve got our own ideas for taking action!

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, you can make a difference in your backyard. What actions are you taking to make a difference in your community? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

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