2013 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants announced
TORONTO, June 14, 2013
RBC awards $2.3 million in funding to protect water in cities and towns around
TORONTO, June 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - RBC today announced the recipients of
the 2013 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants,
totalling more than $2.3 million in funding for water protection and
preservation programs. Awarded on the fourth annual RBC Blue Water Day, the
grants support 123 organizations spanning seven countries, including Canada,
the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Singapore, Jamaica and Turks
and Caicos Islands.
"Water is the lifeblood of our planet and vital for our social and economic
wellbeing," said Gord Nixon, president and CEO, RBC. "Since the RBC Blue Water
Project was established in 2007, we have committed more than $38 million in
grants to some 650 organizations around the world working to protect our most
precious natural resource, including the grants we're announcing today. We are
honoured to support the important efforts of this year's grant recipients,
whose projects reflect our new focus on urban water issues."
In December 2012, the RBC Blue Water Project announced a shift in focus to
address a significant, emerging issue that is relevant to the majority of RBC
employees and clients - protecting and preserving water in towns, cities and
urbanized areas. The 2013-2014 Leadership and Community Action Grants are
funding programs that improve urban water quality and efficient use, enhance
storm water management and protect and restore urban waterways.
"By 2050, three quarters of the world's population will live in cities,"
explained Alexandra Cousteau, RBC Blue Water Project Ambassador and National
Geographic Emerging Explorer. "With more people, our urban water resources
will become even more strained than they are today. The 2013 RBC Blue Water
Project Leadership and Community Action Grant recipients are working to solve
some of the most critical water issues facing our growing communities and
helping to ensure we have the clean water we need for the future."
About RBC Blue Water Project
The RBC Blue Water Project is a historic, wide-ranging, 10-year global
commitment to help protect the world's most precious natural resource: fresh
water. Since 2007, RBC has pledged over $38 million to more than 650
charitable organizations worldwide that protect water, including the grants
announced today, with an additional $7.8 million pledged to universities for
water programs. In 2013-2014, the RBC Blue Water Project will focus on
supporting initiatives that help protect water in towns, cities and urbanized
areas. For further information, visit www.rbc.com/bluewater.
About RBC's Commitment to Community and Sustainability
Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) and its subsidiaries operate under
the master brand name RBC. We employ approximately 80,000 full- and part-time
employees who serve more than 15 million personal, business, public sector and
institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 44 other
countries. RBC is recognized among the world's financial, social and
environmental leaders and is listed on the 2012 - 2013 Dow Jones
Sustainability World Index, the DJSI North American Index, the Jantzi Social
Index and the FTSE4Good Index. RBC is one of Canada's Greenest Employers, one
of Canada's 50 Most Socially Responsible Corporations and among the Global 100
Most Sustainable Corporations in the World. Learn more at
RBC supports a broad range of community initiatives through donations,
sponsorships and employee volunteer activities. In 2012, we contributed more
than $95 million to causes worldwide, including donations and community
investments of more than $64 million and $31 million in sponsorships.
2013 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants
Note: Financial references throughout are in Canadian dollars unless otherwise
NATIONAL - CANADA
*Alliance for Water Efficiency: A $60,000 grant will help the Canadian
Plumber Water Sustainability Training Pilot Project offer training to
plumbers in major Canadian markets. Plumbers can help improve water
efficiency in homes and businesses, but their influence is often
neglected. This pilot project aims to equip plumbers to take a more active
role in water management.
*Green Communities Foundation: A grant of $50,000 will help the foundation
remove unnecessary paving and replace it with greenspace, which acts as a
filter and sponge for polluted stormwater runoff. Program partners will
receive hands-on training with a depaving expert then return to their
communities to depave high profile sites.
*Northern Environmental Action Team: A $50,000 grant will help provide
practical storm and melt water management recommendations to northern
communities. This project will also recommend improvements to northern
building codes to encourage the installation of green infrastructure.
*Tides Canada Foundation: A $40,000 grant will enable a series of water
leader workshops to encourage collaboration around urban water issues,
while bridging the gap between community-based and larger scale water
efforts. As a result of the workshops, Tides Canada will produce a
research paper to weave together the best practices determined by the
*Safe Drinking Water Foundation: A grant of $10,430 will provide Safe
Drinking Water Foundation Education Kits to teachers located in urban
centres across Canada. Due to budget cuts, more than 2,900 teachers are
waiting for education kits to be sent to their schools.
*Capital Regional District: A $75,000 grant will inform and engage
residents, youth and businesses about urban water quality, watershed
health and climate change issues through workshops, focus groups and
*City of Vancouver: A $50,000 grant will help the city evaluate the role of
rain barrels in reducing stormwater flow by installing rainbarrels in two
Vancouver communities and monitoring the amount of rainwater collected and
*Regional District Okanagan Similkameen: A $15,000 grant will help this
program educate more residents in communities with serious water issues
through water conservation workshops and events. Residents who have
already used the program showed a reduction in irrigation use, increased
mulch use and more low flow fixtures/appliances changeovers.
*Local organizations: $80,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these fifteen local organizations:
*Comox Valley Land Trust
*Georgia Strait Alliance
*Fraser River Discovery Centre Society
*Osoyoos Desert Society
*Mainstreams Environmental Society
*Squamish River Watershed Society
*Langley Environmental Partners Society
*British Columbia Lake Stewardship Society
*Seymour Salmonid Society
*Powell River Salmon Society
*Fraser Valley Watersheds Coalition
*Peninsula Streams Society
*Cowichan Community Land Trust Society (Cowichan Land Trust)
*Cowichan Lake Salmonid Enhancement Society
*Swan Lake Christmas Hill Sanctuary
*Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology: A $50,000 grant
will support a unique water education program (Youth Wavemakers) that
informs, educates and celebrates the impact youth have on local and global
*City of Camrose: A $50,000 grant will help the city develop a water
conservation program, including a public awareness and education campaign.
*Green Calgary: A $45,000 grant will support an education program about
community water quality and supply issues, including water conservation,
rain harvesting to reduce storm water run-off and decreasing the use of
potable water for landscaping and toilet flushing.
*Helen Schuler Nature Centre (City of Lethbridge): A $40,000 grant will
help fund renovations to the Nature Centre. The expansion will feature
displays on rainwater harvesting, and show how permeable surfaces enable
storm water absorption.
*Local organizations: $50,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these seven local organizations:
*The Miistakis Institute
*City of Dawson Creek
*Biosphere Institute of the Bow Valley
*City of Spruce Grove
*Canadian Parks & Wilderness Society (Southern Alberta Chapter)
*Red Deer River Watershed Alliance Society
*Water Matters Society of Alberta
*Meewasin Valley Authority: A $30,000 grant will enable the Nature by
Design Project to showcase innovative design and conservation efforts to
protect the northeast swale in Saskatoon. The project includes restoration
work, an awareness-raising campaign and innovative design highlights such
as low-impact stormwater management and recreational facilities.
*Local organizations: $13,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
the Regina Catholic School Division and the City of Moose Jaw
*International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD): A grant of
$50,000 will help advance an innovative project to capture phosphorus and
prevent it from entering urban waterways. IISD will collaborate with key
partners to harvest cattail and other plant species at numerous sites in
Winnipeg. IISD will then compress the harvested plant material into a form
that can be burned to produce bioenergy.
*Lake Winnipeg Foundation: A grant of $30,000 will support an action plan
to reduce the amount of phosphorus released into Lake Winnipeg. The
project will include collaboration with municipalities and educational
outreach in six cities across the Lake Winnipeg basin.
*Local organizations: $33,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these four local organizations:
*Ecolé Crane Grounds Transportation
*West Souris River Conservation District
*University of Winnipeg - Department of Geography
*Ottawa Riverkeeper: A $100,000 grant will support the creation of a
web-based map that tracks the frequency and size of sewage spills, a
common occurrence in the Ottawa River. The project will increase the
frequency of water testing at beaches and popular recreation areas and
will report the results using the Waterkeeper Swim Guide.
*Trout Unlimited Canada: A $100,000 grant will help improve water quality
in the Bronte Creek Watershed through community engagement. Project
leaders will work with community stakeholders to link residents to their
water resources, and provide advice to residents wishing to undertake
small restoration projects at home.
*Toronto Zoo: A grant of $50,000 will help the Great Lakes Program teach
participants about at-risk aquatic species and how conservation is linked
to the health of the Great Lakes. The program is free, interactive and
curriculum-based. New initiatives for 2013 include expanding the program
into new regions and rehabilitating the fishway in the Morningside
Tributary on Toronto Zoo property.
*Earth Rangers Foundation: A $40,000 grant will enable further greening of
the Earth Rangers Centre (ERC) in Woodbridge, Canada's highest rated LEED
platinum building. The grant will be used to install additional meters to
the existing system to allow better monitoring of green roofs, white
roofs, rain water capture and reuse systems, storm water mitigation
strategies and the waste water treatment plant.
*Long Point Region Conservation Authority: A $40,000 grant will support the
installation of low-impact development demonstration sites (LID) to prove
their feasibility and effectiveness. The LID sites will be a model on how
to create green space, reuse water and incorporate stormwater controls
into new or existing developments.
*Nickel District Conservation Authority: A $35,000 grant will support the
development of low impact development (LID) demonstration sites to manage
stormwater in commercial areas in the Ramsey Lake watershed. Stormwater is
a key contributor to water quality issues and LID technologies, combined
with re-vegetation and reforestation efforts, will decrease these
*The Town of Fort Erie: A $35,000 grant will help the town develop a water
quality monitoring program. The town has 33 municipal drains, which drain
approximately two-thirds of the town's stormwater into Lake Erie and the
*Local organizations: $151,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these 26 local organizations:
*Coalition for a Liveable Sudbury
*St. Clair Region Conservation Foundation
*Lake Ontario Waterkeeper
*Rouge Valley Foundation
*Lower Trent Conservation
*The Ecologos Institute
*The Regional Municipality of Peel
*Mississippi Valley Conservation
*Durham Children's Water Festival
*Raisin Region Conservation Authority
*City of Hamilton (Hamilton Children's Water Festival)
*The Museum of Ideas and Transcending Objects
*Oxford County Trails Council
*St. Lawrence River Institute
*Environment Hamilton Incorporated
*Centre for Sustainable Watersheds
*Ladies of the Lake
*Town of Orangeville
*Upper Thames River Conservation Authority
*Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority
*Friends of Ecological and Environmental Learning
*Conservation Halton Foundation
*Essex Region Conservation Authority
*Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority
*Brant Waterways Foundation
*Sierra Club Canada Foundation
*L'association des scouts du Canada: A $25,000 grant will enable water
conservation activities as part of Moot Canada 2013, a gathering of 5,000
Scouts between the ages of 18-25 from 100 countries. Partnering with ONE
DROP, the activities will help the Scouts educate the public about storm
sewer management and water pollution.
*Local organizations: $43,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these nine local organizations:
*Amis des jardins de métis
*Groupe d'éducation et d'écosurveillance de l'eau
*Bassin Versant Saint-Maurice
*Groupe de recherché appliqué en macro-écologie
*Fondation en environnement et développement durable
*Fondation de l'eau Rivière du Nord
*Comité zone d'intervention prioritaire ZIP du Haut St-Laurent
*Ecology Action Centre: A $70,000 grant will help the centre pilot a study
to see how low-impact design methods reduce stormwater runoff, control
pollutant loading and enhance groundwater infiltration.
*City of Bathurst: A $10,000 grant will help the city provide grants to
low-income homeowners for decommissioning unused wells,
repairing/replacing leaking septic systems or removing/replacing old metal
home heating oil tanks.
*Local organizations: $26,350 in Community Action Grants will be shared by
these four local organizations:
*Bluenose Coastal Action Foundation
*JW MacLeod Fleming Tower School
*City of Charlottetown Water & Sewer Utility
*Sackville Rivers Association
CANADA / U.S.
*Gulf of Maine Association: A $100,000 grant will help the Gulf of Maine
Council, in partnership with organizations in five locations around the
Gulf of Maine watershed, restore urban freshwater resources at sites in
Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Maine and New Hampshire.
*Waterkeeper Alliance: A grant of $50,000 will fund a Waterkeeper Swim
Guide, an innovative tool that uses social media to connect people to
their waterways. The Swim Guide consolidates real-time beach water quality
data, converts it into an easy-to-understand format and delivers it free
to anyone with a computer or mobile device. RBC has supported the
development of Waterkeeper Swim Guides in several other regions with past
RBC Blue Water Project grants.
*TreePeople: A $100,000 USD grant will enable a partnership with the City
of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to create the city's first
stormwater capture master plan, ultimately increasing community-based
urban watershed management through stormwater capture and urban forestry.
*The Nature Conservancy of Minnesota: A $100,000 USD grant will fund a
feasibility study on providing water funds to North American communities.
First developed in Latin America, water funds create predictable funding
for conservation investments, such as green infrastructure. Analysis
increasingly shows that green infrastructure can reduce the need for hard
infrastructure, reducing the cost burden on tax and ratepayers.
*Local organizations: $100,000 USD in Community Action Grants will be
shared by these 19 local organizations:
*National Audubon Society, Audubon Arizona
*Ducks Unlimited Bennington County Chapter
*Conservation Lands Foundation
*Massachusetts Watershed Coalition Inc
*Alliance for the Great Lakes
*Friends of Casco Bay
*Civic Works Inc.
*Parks & People Foundation
*Save The River Inc.
*Scenic Hudson Inc.
*Otsego Land Trust Inc.
*Rensselaer Land Trust Inc.
*Chicago Zoological Society
*Friends of Ballona Wetlands
*Buzzards Bay Coalition
*Renfrew Institute for Cultural and Environmental Studies Inc.
*London Wildlife Trust: A $100,000 grant will help volunteers manage a 2-km
stretch along the Regent's Canal, a waterway running through one of the
biggest urban redevelopment zones in Europe. The Wildlife on your
Waterways will deliver water quality and habitat improvements to improve
green infrastructure in the Kings Cross area.
*The Rivers Trust: A $35,000 grant will support a water saving project
focused on the River Ver, highlighting the links between levels of
domestic water consumption and water levels in the river. St. Albans is in
one of the driest areas of the U.K., yet has one of the highest levels of
per capita water consumption.
*U.K. Overseas Territories Conservation Forum (Turks and Caicos Islands): A
$55,000 grant will help the Turks and Caicos National Museum demonstrate
the use of harvested rainwater for its gardens, toilets and cleaning. The
islands don't receive a lot of rain and rather than harvesting rainwater,
many households and businesses use city and bottled water. The Museum will
use the demonstration site to educate residents and visitors about
reducing their consumption of expensive city water.
*BREDS Treasure Beach Foundation (Jamaica): A $45,000 grant will help the
BREDS Treasure Beach Sports Park and Community Centre improve water
storage and reduce water loss by switching to nighttime irrigation of the
grounds, reducing water loss by at least 50 per cent. A large pond on the
grounds will be refurbished to collect and store water harvested from the
land and buildings.
*Peter Cullen Trust (Australia): A $40,000 grant will help the Science to
Policy Leadership Program bring together early to mid-career scientists
with policy makers for an experiential leadership course. Participants
learn about bridging science and policy and, in the process, learn how
their own skills can help them influence decision-making for sustainable
*National Book Development Council of Singapore (Singapore): A $25,000
donation will help the Splash! Into Savings project educate youth about
the importance of water. The project involves the creation of Asian
children's picture books with water-themed stories and a web-based program
called the "Sustainability Challenge" for teachers to provide training and
*Landcare Australia Limited (Australia): A grant of $10,000 will engage
community volunteers in a range of urban water conservation activities
that will protect and restore urban waterways and improve urban water
quality around Sydney catchments.
*Local organization: A $5,000 Community Action Grant will be given to
Jamaica Environment Trust.
André Roberts, RBC Communications, 416 974-3678,firstname.lastname@example.org
Alicia DeBoer, RBC Communication, 416 974-2131,email@example.com
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