Yesterday, June Ross and Paul Manly of the Mid Island chapter of the Council of Canadians presented Nanaimo mayor John Ruttan with a 'Blue Community' certificate.
It was on March 26, 2012, that the Council of Canadians, Vancouver Island Water Watch, CUPE Local 401 and the Island Glass Artisans first approached Nanaimo city council to make the request that the city become a blue community. To become a blue community, a municipality must recognize water as a human right, ban the sale of bottled water in public facilities and at municipal events, and commit to promoting publicly financed, owned and operated water and wastewater services.
Congratulations to the chapter and our allies who campaigned hard to win this designation, including overcoming opposition from Nestle Waters Canada as noted here, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=14514. The fuller story of their campaign is told in these five blogs, http://canadians.org/blog/?s=nanaimo+blue.
Along with the certificate, the chapter presented city councillors with stainless steel water bottles with the logo, 'Proud to be a Blue Community'. They told councillors that they should consider purchasing them and selling them at all their venues to go along with the water fill up stations - and that they would make a great tourist item!
The Council of Canadians is thrilled to be holding its next annual conference in Nanaimo - now a blue community! - on October 26-27, http://canadians.org/conference.
For information on how to make your community a Blue Community, go to http://canadians.org/bluecommunities.