Abel Page is a Geology Engineer with an MSc in Environmental Management and worked all his career (12 years) in sustainability in various sectors in Canada and abroad. He settled in rural Erin in 2019 with his wife.
Always passionate about making a positive impact and contributing to the community, he decided to work on creating a new venture to tackle sustainability and climate action in Rural Wellington County.
“2021 has shown us how climate change is accelerating and affecting communities around the world. Just this summer, 2 thirds of United States’ residents were affected by abnormal weather events (1) and one third by a weather disaster (1). Canada also saw its fair share of abnormal climate events, between heat dome (2), fires (2) and floods (3) in BC, to droughts in Manitoba (4) and other anomalies in Ontario (5). Not only these events are becoming more frequent, they also threaten our livelihoods and create a lot of anxiety in people, especially in younger generations (6). It becomes clearer that we need to act together as a community to address these challenges and build more resilient communities for a better tomorrow.”
Following this assessment, Abel decided that it was time for him to try and do something about it. Thus, he started working on creating a new venture enabling sustainability and climate action for everyone. Although it is still in the early stage, Abel has joined one of the Climate Ventures Accelerator Programs from the Centre for Social Innovation in Toronto to help him figure things out and progress the project. In the meantime, Abel has connected with a number of local environmental leaders in the community to understand what they see as a challenge and what possible solutions could best help the community to tackle these issues.
“The idea of my project is to engage as many people (individuals and institutions) as I can to join the climate action movement, not necessarily as activists but rather in a compassionate and collaborative way. People are polarized and conflicted about addressing environmental issues, often thinking that individual action is marginal to make an impact. I want to address these prejudices and break the barriers to action, demonstrating that everyone can do something at their level and in alignment with their values and also that sustainable solutions can actually also help save cost, build resilience and increase happiness and well-being.”
Last week, Abel launched an online survey to better understand where the community stands on these issues, their level of awareness and how best they could be helped to better apprehend these topics. You can fill the survey online at by clicking here .
“My project is still at the early stage but ideally, I envision it as becoming a community tackling climate change from many different angles. I believe that collaboration and compassion are key to be successful in building more resilient communities. The survey is an important piece for me to understand how best to be of service. So far, responses have been really positive, and I am very thankful to all who took the time to participate”.
Beyond this survey, Abel is actively connecting with various actors in the community who are making a difference in environment and social impact.
“Ideally, this project becomes a community of partners where we can leverage impact and amplify the amazing work that is already done by many in our community. So many fantastic individuals and organisations are working hard in Erin and Wellington County to build a better future and yet, I feel that sometimes people are not aware. I really want to bring these alternatives to everyone in our Region and inspire people as much as those actors inspired me. We are blessed to have a very dynamic community with so many initiatives in making a change: from regenerative farmers to small scale businesses making an impact, individuals mastering DIY skills and selling local products, to environmental & social organisations and wide scale projects such as Our Food Future Guelph Wellington, we definitely have the potential to be leading the transition to a new economy, more respectful of the planet and the people in Canada.”