Promoting Professional Development and Best Practice in EE
Roles at NAAEE:CCC Fellow
Nature Venture Tours Ltd.
Roy has a diploma in Outdoor Recreation Management and a Master's of Environmental Education and Communication. He is the owner of an ecotourism business and a professor of natural history, environmental stewardship, and leadership at a university in British Columbia. Roy’s passion is connecting others through experiential education and interpretation. Therefore, on any given day, he may be donning scuba equipment to bring up sub-tidal creatures to interpret for a class of college students, using a driftwood ‘pencil’ to map out coastal weather systems on a sandy patch of beach to seniors, or in hip waders in a river sampling invertebrates with school children. Ultimately, Roy seeks, not just to educate, but to inspire. Roy loves to hike with his wife, adventure with his four boys ages 18-22, and lives at the edge of a forest, a lake, and the Yukon River. In his community, Roy is always looking for ways to connect the public to the important issues of the day, including climate change, habitat loss, and species decline.
Roy’s project is to design an environmental communication product for locals and visitors of the Yukon, aiming to educate them about climate change impacts along the corridors of the Alaska & Klondike Highways. Using geological, ecological, climate, and aboriginal culture research, Roy will create a story to help travelers understand the alterations happening in the North. The project is titled, “A Personal Experience Toward Understanding Climate Change in the North” and aims to ensure travelers are not passive, but rather get out of their vehicles to actively engage in the effects of climate change first hand. The story will be designed to make climate change relevant to the travelers' experiences and to their lives, and ultimately build a "bridge" between themselves and climate change, that ideally will lead to action and behavioral change. To have a sense of what this "road trip story" could be, consider the following: One week, and two thousand miles from their home in Des Moines, Iowa, Don and Rita are pulling their 27-foot RV into Dawson Creek, BC to refuel. Knowing mile 0 of the Alaska Highway begins here, they visit the local visitor information centre to ask about road conditions. Noticing a poster for a free Alaska Highway climate change app, Rita uses the centre’s wireless to download it onto her iPad. As they begin their next 1100 miles to the Alaska border, they learn about how permafrost melting is affecting the highway and the foundations of some homes bordering it. They gain an understanding of the how centuries-old subsistence hunting practices have changed for the nearby aboriginal communities. They observe roadside species that are new to the Yukon and known to be invasive next to landscapes affected by new fire or flood regimes. By the time Don and Rita arrive at the Alaska border they have considered the economic impacts of climate change, along with decisions they make in their everyday lives. They understand that to know the land and experience the beauty of the North is an honorable journey, but the decisions they have made to get here have far reaching effects--both positive and negative. Rita and Don have had “A Personal Experience to Understanding Climate Change in the North."