Watershed conference to boast two prominent Canadian speakers

The third-annual ManOMin Watershed Conference is taking place Nov. 19-22 at Rainy River Community College in International Falls.
The conference on the environmental sustainability of Manitoba, Ontario, and Minnesota basins is being jointly presented by RRCC and the Rainy River First Nations.
It will bring together scientists, resource managers, and members of the general public who have an interest in protecting the health of the ManOMin basin.
It also presents an opportunity share the latest information on scientific understanding of the basin’s trans-border environmental issues as well as strengthen co-operation between the Minnesota Tribes, Ontario First Nations, federal and state departments, and schools.
This year’s keynote speakers include two prominent Canadian forestry specialists from British Columbia.
Wade Davis, who’s been described as a “living Indiana Jones,” has worked as a guide, park ranger, and forestry engineer in his native province.
He has written nine books, conducted ethnographic fieldwork among several indigenous societies in northern Canada, and currently holds the post of Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society.
He will be giving a speech at the Backus/AB complex in International Falls tonight at 7 p.m. entitled “Extinction or Survival: The global biodiversity crisis.”
Admission is free.
Meanwhile, Herb Hammond, a professional forester from B.C., originally was scheduled to give a talk entitled “Walking Softly: Ecosystem-based planning for ecological and cultural sustainability” at the Townshend Theatre here Friday evening.
Instead, he will be speaking about “Seeing the forest among the trees: Sustainable forestry needs sustainable forests.”
In Hammond’s place, Harry Bombay of Rainy River First Nations, executive director of the National Aboriginal Forestry Association, will be giving a talk called “Aboriginal people in a changing forest paradigm” at the Townshend Theatre at 7 p.m. on Friday.
Admission also is free.
As executive director of the NAFA for the past 12 years, Bombay has been responsible for organizational development, strategic planning, and the creation of partnerships with governments and industry stakeholders in addition to day-to-day administration.
As a committed advocate for aboriginal peoples‚ forest rights, and interests, he has contributed publications and presentations on forest issues as well as participated in numerous national and international forest policy forums.
For his contribution to sustainable forest management in Canada, and for his efforts in advancing the position of aboriginal communities in the forest sector, Bombay was a 2003 recipient of the Queen’s Jubilee Award.
To register for the ManOMin conference, contact Kiley Hanson, Rainy River Watershed Program, Rainy River First Nations, P.O. Box 450, Emo, Ont. POW 1E0, or by fax at 482-2603.
You also can register online at www.tapresources.com/manomin or in person at RRCC in the Falls.
In conjunction with the conference, a live owl demonstration, featuring ornithologist Jim Hall, is slated for Saturday (Nov. 22) from 1-2 p.m. in the RRCC gymnasium.
This is an interactive, fun program for the whole family.
Admission is $5 for adults and $1 for children.