Award-winning water steward and community activist Gerry Nellestijn will be the featured speaker at a celebration of World Water Day, Monday, March 23 at Seniors Branch 51, 717 Vernon St. in Nelson at 7 p.m.
Nellestijn, since 1998 the co-ordinator of the Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers Society, is recognized nationally, provincially and locally for his environmental stewardship.
He is the recipient of the 2007 Fraser Basin Council Award for Ecosystem Excellence, the 2008 Canadian Environmental Award, a 2009 award for outstanding volunteer service in the Salmo area, and a group award finalist for Hometown Heroes Earth Day Canada.
As one of its habitat restoration projects, the Salmo Watershed Streamkeeping Society does annual rainbow trout monitoring, as well as bull trout fish nest counting, to get a sense of the adult population numbers. In the long term, another one of the society’s goals is to see salmon return to the Salmo watershed, called their Imagine Salmon campaign.
As well, Nellestijn is following First Nations/tribal lead to equally value ecosystems in the Columbia River.
“The renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty is the single most important opportunity in our lifetime to drive real environmental change in the Columbia Basin – the eco-nation we all live in,” Nellestijn says.
Sponsor for the event is the Nelson chapter of the Council of Canadians, a leader in protecting Canada’s freshwater sources. For further information, call 250-352-9871.