On April 30 I rose in the House to celebrate the opening on April 7 of the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Education Centre in Gibsons, at the Gibsons Public Market, named in honour of the life and legacy of Nicholas Sonntag and graciously opened by a Squamish Nation ceremony.
Educated at UBC, early in his career Nick caught the attention of Maurice Strong through his early work on environmental stewardship in Vietnam. As a result Nick became the Chief of Staff for the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio. Then, he synthesized the ideas that became United Nations action plan for sustainability, known as Agenda 21. In 1996 Nick became Executive Director of the Stockholm Environmental Institute. He simply never stopped engaging in sustainability research and connecting to communities, globally. Nick led the world in preserving the Earth’s resources for future generations. His home was the Sunshine Coast.
The opening in early April brought over 650 people through the Marine Education Centre and many, many more to the daylong celebration – the market was packed to the gills all day long.
Over 350 volunteers and hundreds of donors support the marine centre, to educate and engage us and those who visit toward taking positive action to keep local waters and the life within healthy for present and future generations.
Nick’s great friends and colleagues Dr. Brian and Dr. Mary Nattrass are also world experts in environmental protection, resilience and sustainability. The plaque installed in memory of Nicholas Sonntag which they wrote says, in part, “Come experience the mystery, wonder, and magic of the amazing undersea world at our doorstep. The more we know of the ocean, the more we understand ourselves and the changing tides of our lives.” The legacy of Nicholas Sonntag lives on as a gift to the community and to Canada, as a place of learning, understanding and reconciliation.
Thank you to the hundreds of volunteers for your commitment to the market and the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Centre.
Please visit: www.pgoldsmithjones.liberal.ca for more information. I welcome your thoughts – Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org, connect with us on Facebook: Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, or drop by our office in Horseshoe Bay, 6367 Bruce Street 604-913-2660.