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Institute of Island Studies making the case for P.E.I. going carbon neutral

['Summerside wind turbines']
['Summerside wind turbines']

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - The Institute of Island Studies will host a public symposium to examine the idea of turning the Island into Canada’s first carbon-neutral province.

The public event will be held Oct. 26, 7 p.m., at the Alex H. MacKinnon Auditorium, room 242 of UPEI’s Don and Marion McDougall Hall.

The event is sponsored by UPEI’s Institute of Island Studies, in conjunction with UPEI research services and the UPEI climate research lab.

The principal speaker will be Catherine Potvin, a professor at McGill University and associate staff scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. In the wake of the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference, Potvin was selected as one of 23 women visionaries for the future of Canada.

She leads the group Sustainable Canada Dialogues, a voluntary initiative that mobilizes more than 80 researchers from every province, with sustainability being at the heart of their research programs.

Potvin will be joined by Bob Ashley, chief administrative officer for the City of Summerside.

The city has implemented a number of initiatives, including generating its own electricity. His talk, entitled Summerside’s Renewable Energy Quest, will illustrate the value of a community-owned electric utility as an instrument of public energy policy.

Other initiatives include storage for intermittent generation, such as wind and solar, building a fleet of electric vehicles, implementing a living lab program and a smarter homes initiative.

Jim Randall, chairman of the Institute of Island Studies and UNESCO co-chairman of Island Studies and Sustainability, will speak about the experiences and challenges of other small islands of the world in their quest to achieve a version of carbon neutrality.

Admission to this event is free. Following the presentations, there will be time for discussion and questions.

For more information, contact Laurie at the Institute of Island Studies at 902-894-2881 or


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