Thursday, April 12 was a big day for Sustainable Waterloo Region and the many program participants and volunteers who help make everything we do such a success. On April 12, we celebrated our 9th Evening of Recognition. The Turret at Wilfrid Laurier University was standing room only as sustainability leaders gathered to celebrate their successes and achievements, swap stories, and share learnings. That the event was held at Laurier was particularly meaningful; for 10 years, Wilfrid Laurier University has played a critical role in helping SWR and all Regional Sustainability Initiative members along. The genesis for SWR lies in an extra-credit project co-founders Mike Morrice and Chris DePaul undertook under the guidance of professor Barry Colbert, who later became Board Chair, a position he’s held ever since. Throughout the years, SWR has been grateful for the support we’ve received from Wilfrid Laurier University. The Evening of Recognition, or EOR as we like to call it, is also an amazing opportunity for team members to hear about the successes and achievements of members and partners that some of us might not otherwise get to hear. The videos and stories, networking, and conversation always leave us inspired and energized by the amazing work being done in our region. This year, we were thrilled to celebrate the following achievements:
  • A collective commitment by all program members to reduce 57,942 tonnes of greenhouse gas emission
  • A whopping reduction of 41,348 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions achieved
  • 26 carbon reduction targets set
  • 7 waste reduction targets set
  • 4 water reduction targets set
  • TravelWise saw a 68% increase in users through events such as Carpool Month, Bike Month, and more.
  • ClimateActionWR re-inventoried our community carbon footprint and region-wide, we have reduced our impact by 5.2% since 2010!
We also celebrated the winners of the SWR awards. These awards are given to those who have gone above and beyond in their efforts to support a more sustainable community. Congratulations to our winners:
  • SWR Champion of the Year: Elena Weber-Kraljevska, Waterloo Catholic District School Board
  • Partner of the Year: City of Kitchener
  • Environmental Awareness: Borealis Grille and Bar
  • Regional Sustainability Initiative Rookie of the Year: Conestoga College
  • Regional Sustainability Initiative Sustainability Breakthrough: University of Waterloo
  • Regional Sustainability Initiative Greatest GHG Reduction: City of Kitchener
  • TravelWise Leadership and Innovation: BlackBerry
  • TravelWise Most Active Member: WalterFedy
  • TravelWise Sustainable Commuting: Thalmic Labs
We’re so proud of all of the achievements celebrated at the EOR. It’s the hard work and dedication of our members and their teams that make them possible and help keep the fire lit in all of us. To read the stories of everything that happened in 2017, our TENTH year in operation, please read our 2017 Year-End Report.