Caring for Our Watersheds

Caring for Our Watersheds

April 12, 2014 08:00 ET

Local Students Find Innovative Environmental Solutions

TRENTON, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 12, 2014) - Local students clearly care about the health of the Lower Trent watershed. A total of 155 students recently participated in an environmental contest, Caring for Our Watersheds™, by submitting their ideas on how to solve a local environmental issue. The contest wrapped up last night at Timber Ridge Golf Course, near Brighton, when six team finalists competed to win the $1,000 first place prize.

The Grades 7, 8 and 9 students answered the question, "What can you do to improve your watershed?" Students researched their local watershed, identified an environmental concern and came up with a realistic solution.

Lucy Clitherow and Cassidy Tizzard from St. Mary's Catholic Elementary School, in Campbellford, placed first for their idea to raise awareness and educate youth about the environmental concerns found in their local watershed by writing and illustrating a children's storybook.

The students competed for a total of $4,500 in prizes and schools were eligible for matching cash rewards. Participating schools included Brighton, Kent and Percy Centennial Public Schools, St. Mary's Catholic Elementary School (Campbellford), and East Northumberland Secondary School.

Caring for Our Watersheds™ was initiated by Agrium Inc., a major retail supplier of agricultural products and services in Australia and North and South America. The company launched the environmental contest in 2007 in Alberta because it believes that taking care of the world requires more than simply talking about it - it calls for stewardship and a lighter footprint.

Several years ago, Lower Trent Conservation (LTC) was approached by former Campbellford resident and Agrium CEO, Mike Wilson, to coordinate an Ontario version of the Caring for Our Watersheds™ competition for the Lower Trent Conservation watershed region. After launching the program in Campbellford in 2010, Brighton and area schools were approached to participate in 2012 with the support of an Agrium office located in Brighton. Wilson personally donated the prize money for the competition.

"The purpose of the contest is simple," says Lindsey Metheral, Agrium Program Advisor. "Our goal is to encourage students to learn about their local watershed and be inspired to make improvements to the land, air and water. With community and school support, we have seen the creativity and determination students have for protecting and preserving the environment. It's inspiring when they turn their ideas into reality."

Agrium provides an additional $10,000 in funding to help the students implement their ideas.

"Over the years the community has shown great leadership in mentoring the students and helping them implement their ideas," explains Glenda Rodgers, Lower Trent Conservation CAO. "Anyone who submitted a proposal for the 2014 contest can work towards making their idea happen. We are here to help them."

Judges for the final event included Cramahe Councillor and LTC Board of Directors' Chair Pat Westrope; Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board Curriculum Specialists Andrew Booth and Drew Ginter; Agrium Direct Solutions - Brighton Quality Control Jackie Somerville; and Danielle Hilts, Wilson's niece.

For more information about Caring for Our Watersheds ™, visit http://www.ltc.on.ca/events/education/ or www.CaringForOurWatersheds.com.

About Agrium:

Agrium Inc. is a major retail supplier of agricultural products and services in Australia and North and South America and a leading global producer and marketer of agricultural nutrients and industrial products. Agrium produces and markets three primary groups of nutrients: nitrogen, phosphate and potash as well as controlled release fertilizers and micronutrients. Agrium's strategy is to grow through incremental expansion of its existing operations and acquisitions as well as the development, commercialization and marketing of new products and international opportunities. Contact us at: www.agrium.com.

About Lower Trent Conservation

Lower Trent Conservation is a community-based environmental agency that protects, restores and manages the natural resources within its watershed. Lower Trent Conservation works with local communities to create a healthy, environmentally diverse watershed that improves the quality of life for residents, makes our area more appealing to visitors and new business, and helps to ensure a more vibrant regional economy. Education and outreach are critically important to Lower Trent Conservation and we continually work to engage residents in environmentally sustainable behaviours and drawing attention to conservation issues. Contact us at: www.ltc.on.ca.

Contact Information