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Sophia Rabliauskas is Recognized for Community Campaign to Protect Boreal Forest and Culture near Poplar River, Manitoba

by admin ~ April 24th, 2007

Six people were awarded the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize this year for their protection of the environment and grassroots organizing in their communities. The prize brings international recognition to environmental issues around the world, and a cash award of $125,000 in support of local environmental initiatives. The recipient from Canada, Sophia Rabliauskas, has worked in Manitoba and on UNESCO World Heritage proposals to protect a green belt of endangered forest for cultural heritage, livelihood, and sustainable development near the First Nations community of Poplar River, Manitoba. “The forest holds the knowledge, the wisdom, and we as people have to take that responsibility to look after it,” Rabliauskas told the CBC (1). Poplar River has built alliances with other First Nations communities along the Manitoba and Ontario border to promote sustainable practices and better forest management, and seek permanent protection of the Boreal Forest from the impacts of large scale clear cutting for pulp and paper production, and the threat to water quality and natural resources from hydro-development. The selection of the Goldman Environmental Prize is made annually by a network of environmental organizations and individuals worldwide, and is in its 18th year. More information about the 2007 award recipients can be obtained from the Goldman Environmental Prize website, the Poplar/Nanowin Rivers Park Reserve website, or the CBC news story and video on Sophia Rabliauskas, and her work at Poplar River.

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