VIU Climate Change Symposium Focuses on Local Solutions

May 7, 2019 - 10:15am

VIU student-led climate change symposium on Saturday, May 11 will spotlight sustainable energy solutions for Vancouver Island.


NANAIMO, BC: Vancouver Island University’s (VIU’s) student-led climate change initiative, Awareness of Climate Change through Education and Research (ACER), is hosting its sixth annual public symposium on Saturday, May 11. 

The symposium, called Local Solutions to a Global Problem, will start with an update on the science of climate change from Kristy Faccer, Program Manager for the University of Victoria’s Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (PICS), followed by presentations from Paul Manson, President, DC Grid Development Corporation; Eric Smiley, Viridian Energy; Matthew Beck, Chair VIU HVAC Program; and Rob Lawrence, City of Nanaimo Environmental Planner. 

The International Panel on Climate Change reports that reducing our reliance on fossil fuels for energy production is the most cost-effective mitigation technique we can implement. This year the ACER symposium will focus on local efforts being made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and include information tables from vendors and community groups. 

ACER is VIU public outreach initiative that aims to promote a greater understanding of the science and social implications of climate change. It is an inter-disciplinary project rooted in the belief that making informed decisions on the issue of climate change requires greater public engagement and a deeper understanding of this complex topic. 

Climate change is a global problem, but one that requires different regional strategies that make use of resources available in different areas. 

“Vancouver Island has an abundance of hydropower and growing solar, geothermal and wind sectors,” says Steve Hextall, ACER Coordinator. “With this mix of energy solutions, there are other modifications that can be implemented to reduce our carbon footprint. Understanding how we can implement these changes in our lives is essential to mitigating the impact on climate change.” 

The event takes place in the VIU Arts & Science building (Building 355) at the Nanaimo campus on Saturday, May 11starting at 9 am. The symposium is free and open to the public and includes lunch, a panel discussion and information tables. Registration is limited to 100 participants. 

To register and participate in this free event please email



Annette Lucas, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University

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Tags: community | Research | Sustainability | Teaching and Learning

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