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Blue Economy Initiative Announced

June 14, 2011 - Walter & Duncan Gordon Foundation , Canadian Water Network and RBC Blue Water Project team up for "Blue Economy Initiative."

Today, Canada's most experienced funder of water organizations, the nation's leading water research network and Canada's largest bank joined forces in a two-year venture that will make a clear case for the critical role water plays in Canada's economy.

The Walter & Duncan Gordon Foundation, Canadian Water Network and RBC Blue Water Project announced The Blue Economy Initiative, which will provide information to Canadians and key decision makers about the economic benefits of protecting Canada's fresh water, and the economic risks of neglecting the health of our watersheds. Its goal is to create an upswell of support for sustainable water management in Canada, addressing questions that so far remain unanswered such as:

  • What is the value of protecting/restoring aquatic ecosystems?
  • Can we decrease healthcare costs by reducing water pollution?
  • Can we enhance agricultural productivity to help address the global food crisis while at the same time ensuring responsible water use?
  • How can cities tackle the costs imposed by climate change with new and innovative forms of water infrastructure?
  • What is the competitive advantage of Canada's relative water abundance compared to the rest of the world.

The Blue Economy Initiative will be led by Nicholas Parker, Chair of Cleantech Group and Parker Venture Management. Its first milestone will be the fall of 2011, with the release of a ground-breaking economic study of the contribution of water to the Canadian economy , authored by Canada's foremost water economists Steven Renzetti and Diane Dupont, and award-winning journalist, Chris Wood.

The announcement was made at the second annual Canadian Water Summit in Toronto.

For more information, contact Tim Morris, Program Manager, Fresh Water Protection at tim@gordonfn.org