Celebrating the Earth

Jodi Schellenberg
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Liza Brown performs a set of songs, some about the environment, during Prince Albert’s Earth Day celebration on Saturday.

The City of Prince Albert held its annual Earth Day on Saturday, celebrating with music and entertainment in City Hall.

“We are basically having people come and perform,” said Rick Sawa, Council of Canadians Prince Albert contact. “We asked them all to sing at least one song about the environment.”

He likes mixing entertainment with the message.

“For years now we have tried to connect culture with activism so it is a way to get the message out that you are not pounding on the table saying you are trying to get the message out,” Sawa said.

Although Earth Day is on April 22, the organizers decided to hold it later in the spring so it could be outside.

“Earth Day on the earth is what we were hoping for but, as it turns out, we were forced to be inside today,” Sawa said.

Sawa said they wish to get the message out to people to respect the environment.

“We are lucky that we’ve got -- especially in Prince Albert -- we have fresh air to breathe right now,” Sawa said. “We are a little concerned about the water because a lot of it isn’t going to be protected anymore because of the new water protections act.”

The only rivers protected in Saskatchewan right now are the North Saskatchewan, South Saskatchewan and Athabasca and one lake, Lake Athabasca, Sawa said.

“We are a little concerned about what is going to happen to the water that doesn’t have to have the environmental assessments before people start mining or building bridges or doing whatever they wish and now they don’t have to clean up after themselves,” Sawa said. “We are trying to get those messages out to people that we are lucky we live where we live.”

He would like everyone to take responsibility for the environment and would also like to see more movement towards renewable energy instead of mining and uranium.

“We come together once a year to celebrate the fact that we do have an environment still although we do understand it is under attack and not all people are being responsible,” Sawa said.

In addition to entertainment, all the grocery stores in the city donated reusable shopping bags to give away to the public.

“We are very appreciative that they are supportive of people moving towards cloth shopping bags,” Sawa said.

He also appreciated Learners with Purpose for donating their time to make and sell food at the event.

Since March Against Monsanto was also held on Saturday, Sawa mentioned the protest during Earth Day.

“We didn’t know at the time when we picked this date that would also happen today,” Sawa said. “I made mention of that and I also will make mention of it again. Had we known, we may have chosen a different day for Earth Day so we could have been involved in the march as well.”

Organizations: Council of Canadians Prince Albert, Monsanto

Geographic location: Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, North Saskatchewan South Saskatchewan Athabasca Lake Athabasca

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