British Columbia

Finding the world's greenest person

A university professor in B.C. says the "I'm green because I recycle" mentality is not enough to help stop the damage the planet is facing, and he has launched an online contest to find the world's greenest person.

A university professor in B.C. says the "I'm green because I recycle" mentality is not enough to help stop the damage the planet is facing, and he has launched an online contest to find the world's greenest person.

Boyd Cohen, a professor of sustainability at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, B.C., says the goal of the contest is to further raise awareness that simply recycling is not enough to reverse environmental damage. ((CBC) )

The contest coincides with Earth Day, which is celebrated Tuesday, and is a recognition that environmental and social issues appear to have come to the forefront throughout the world, said Boyd Cohen, a professor of sustainability and entrepreneurship at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby.

Incremental actions by individuals — such as recycling, biking or walking, eating local and organic food as well as using low-energy light bulbs — help but are not enough, Cohen said Monday.

"Some people think they know how because they recycle or they put low-energy light bulbs in their houses," he said. "The point of this survey is to help raise awareness that that's not enough."

"The greenest people are the ones that live off the land," he said.

Barista Sarah Chui, a student working at an organic coffee shop, says she rides to school and work and doesn't own a car. ((CBC))

The contest involves taking an online multiple-choice survey and submitting a short essay. Finalists will be given the opportunity to post a five-minute video of their life and why they should be considered.

The winner will have a pod of beluga whales adopted in their honour through the Washington, D.C., group Defenders of Wildlife.

Some Vancouverites said they've been living their life as green as they can.

Barista Sarah Chui is a student working at an organic coffee shop. She serves coffee in 100 per cent recyclable cups.

"I ride my bike to school and work. I don't have a car," she said.

Colin Boyd said people should learn to avoid excess consumption.

"We buy locally, support local merchants, try not to fly on airplanes very much and I recycle," he said. "It's all about moderation. It's all about sensible use."

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