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AWARE pushing for Olympic environmental legacy

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Major announcement planned for June 5 meeting

WHAT: Special AWARE Meeting

WHERE: Delta Whistler Resort

WHEN: Thursday, June 5, at 7 p.m.

The plan is under wraps until June 5, but it’s no secret that the Association of Whistler Area Residents for the Environment weren’t happy with the environmental legacies to Whistler proposed in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Bid.

Since they discovered last October that the environmental legacies proposed for the Winter Games were limited to construction projects, such as the ice rink, the Olympic Village, the bob-luge track, the Nordic centre, and the land bank for staff housing, AWARE has worked on its own proposal. The group feels that an environmental legacy should be green in nature, like a park or a patch of protected lands or wetlands.

Although the government has made it clear through the ongoing Sea to Sky Land and Resource Management Plan process that there is no more room for parks and protected areas in the region, AWARE has made progress at the LRMP round table on several issues. AWARE also feels the Olympics are a unique situation that requires new protected areas to offset the development.

At AWARE’s monthly meeting on June 5, the organization will be presenting a proposal for an environmental legacy. They would not reveal precisely what that legacy is, but have already discussed it in private with the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation, First Nations, and IOC members, with favourable response.

Their proposal will be passed along to municipal, provincial and federal governments if the bid is successful at the July 2 IOC meeting. AWARE is currently the only environmental group that is involved in the Vancouver 2010 bid.

AWARE’s June 5 presentation is open to the public, and will include maps, data, and a question and answer period.

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