Mary Haig-Brown, seventh from the right, won the category of long-term achievement during the 2019 Saanich Environmental Awards handed out Monday. (District of Saanich/Submitted)

Saanich honours lifetime of conservation efforts

Mary Haig-Brown wins environmental award for 40 years of extensive volunteer work

A longtime natural conservationist and educator led the list of 2019 environmental award winners handed out by the District of Saanich.

Mary Haig-Brown was honoured in the category of longterm achievement for her 40 years of extensive volunteer work with a variety of organizations, including the Friends of Tod Creek Watershed, Peninsula Streams Society and the Habitat Acquisition Trust.

Haig-Brown is a daughter of Roderick Haig-Brown, an English-born writer and conservationist, whom the Canadian government recognized as a national historic person in 2016 for his environmental work.

Harry Drage won in the category of individual environmental achievement for his work in helping to restore Haro Woods among other efforts.

The Garry Oak Ecosystem Recovery Team won in the category of volunteer organization for their work in helping to protect the Garry oak ecosystems in Saanich and beyond for the last 20 years.

MAC Renovations won in the category of business for their leadership in implementing the Step Code, as the company built its new Saanich office to Step 4 of the code.

RELATED: Saanich home renovation company is building the change that is coming

The 10th Garry Oak Scouts won the youth category for their commitment to hands-on environmental stewardship in Saanich parks by planting native plant species, while removing invasive ones, among other activities.

Oluna and Adolf Ceska won in the category of biodiversity conservation for their long-term research on fungi on Saanich’s Observatory Hill, benefiting local and global conservation efforts in the face of climate change.

Former Saanich councillor Dean Murdock won in the category of sustainability for his leadership in local food security, alternative transportation and environmental stewardship.

Coun. Rebecca Mersereau, with the assistance of acting mayor Coun. Colin Plant, presented the awards before the start of Monday’s regular council meeting.

“Saanich greatly appreciates the community’s assistance in submitting nominations for those individuals, organizations, and businesses in our municipality that go above and beyond to do their part for our shared environment,” said Mersereau. “Their voluntary, community-minded efforts complement Saanich’s environmental programs and policies in areas including climate change mitigation, biodiversity conservation, waste dedication and water management, which are vital to the protection of the natural environment throughout the district.”

The BC Sustainable Energy Association (BCSEA) also presented the Grade 5 class from St. Joseph’s Elementary School with its Cool It leadership challenge award for their work in challenging their families to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


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