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Ocean Ambassadors is thrilled to announce our Ocean Health speaker series. This virtual series, sponsored by the West Vancouver Foundation, will feature thought leaders in ocean health, marine biology, zero waste and more. In addition to bringing you leading-edge information, our goal is to help to connect people who are passionate about our ocean (and the rest of our planet). When conditions allow, we will host the series in-person at the Hollyburn Sailing Club in West Vancouver.

These free events will take place on the second Wednesday of each month, 7:30-8:15pm via Zoom video conferencing.

July 14, 2021: Seaweed and shellfish, is this the future of food?

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Lauren Krzus – Post-degree diploma student, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Lauren is a Post-degree diploma student in the Fisheries and Aquaculture Department at Vancouver Island University. Throughout her studies she has been involved in several research projects from assessing fisheries in BC, determining rates of coral bleaching in northern Western Australia, and assessing the effects of marine dredging on seagrass meadows in Western Australia. Since moving to BC, Lauren has worked with Ocean Ambassadors Canada as an Environmental Educator and has worked on various waste reduction initiatives. Lauren is currently working with the Canadian Research Chair of Shellfish Health and Genomics in a selective breeding program aiming to produce a strain of Scallops resistant to projected oceanic conditions with climate change. This study hopes to develop a Scallop aquaculture industry in coastal BC and be a part of creating food secure communities.


Previous Speakers

June 9, 2021: Life as a marine biologist; from seashore to whale guts

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Kelsey Gil – Marine Biologist

Kelsey is a PhD candidate at the University of British Columbia, where she studies the internal anatomy and biomechanics of whales. She has been passionate about the ocean and marine life for as long as she can remember, despite growing up in the prairies. In her journey to study marine life, Kelsey completed a B.Sc. (Hons) degree in animal biology and studied at the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre where her love for all marine life – big and small, continued to grow. Kelsey has recognized that the most important thing she can do to help our oceans is share her knowledge to help educate people about how important our oceans and all of their inhabitants are, to demonstrate how much we stand to lose if we don’t take action.

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May 12, 2021: How I went from digging in whale stomachs to working in waste reduction

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Rhiannon Moore – City of Victoria Zero Waste Team

Rhiannon works for the City of Victoria, and previously worked as a Researcher at Ocean Wise. Her research focused on microplastic pollution in beluga whales and their prey in the western Canadian Arctic. She published the first evidence of microplastic pollution in cetaceans within North America, was named one of Canada’s top 30 under 30 sustainability leaders, later receiving the Garfield Weston Award for Northern Research. Her passion for science communication and waste reduction paired with the sobering findings of her research enabled her to shift her career from ocean research to waste reduction policy communication. Rhiannon now works for City of Victoria’s Zero Waste team.

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April 14, 2021: Fostering a world where nothing is waste and what it means for our oceans

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Allen Langdon, President and CEO · ‎Return-It

As the President and CEO of Return-It, Allen oversees the most successful used beverage container management program in Canada with a mandate to develop, manage and improve systems to recover used packaging and end-of-life products from consumers and ensure that they are properly recycled and not land-filled. Allen has extensive experience in sustainability, extended producer responsibility, and advancing industries’ responses to a range of complex sustainability issues including climate change, sustainable packaging, EPR programs, and animal welfare.

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Baljit Lalli, Director, Corporate Communications & Stakeholder Relations · ‎Return-It

As the Director of Corporate Communications and Stakeholder Relations, Bal is responsible for developing and managing Return-It’s corporate communications and stakeholder strategy to advance Return-It’s goals and initiatives.  Bal has extensive experience in advancing stakeholder partnerships and leading media relations, corporate communications, crisis communications, and global rebranding initiatives. 

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March 10, 2021: How Policies and New Business Models Can Reduce Single-Use Plastics

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Karen Storry – Metro Vancouver Senior Engineer, Solid Waste Services

Karen is a Senior Engineer with Metro Vancouver Solid Waste Services. She has worked on various waste reduction and recycling projects over the past 10 plus years from feasibility studies on turning wood waste into particle board to implementing recycling programs in regional parks. Metro Vancouver estimates that 1.1 billion single-use items are disposed annually in the region. And, as the lead for the region's single-use item reduction work, it is Karen’s job to research how we can reduce plastic waste through circular economy programs, polices and business practices. She is excited to share that work with you through this exciting webinar series. 

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