Dr David Suzuki calls for action to protect the Gulf of St. Lawrence

MAGDALEN ISLANDS, QC, May 5 /CNW Telbec/ - Last Saturday, Dr. David Suzuki, with Georges Stroumboulopoulos of CBC's "The Hour" television show, Karel Mayrand, Executive Director of the David Suzuki Foundation in Quebec and Danielle Giroux of Attention FragÎles, joined a gathering of Islanders on Old Harry beach for a flag-raising ceremony for the protection of the Gulf of St. Lawrence against potential oil and gas spills.

During the ceremony, Dr. Suzuki revealed a flag on a sea-blue background with a bright orange starfish at its centre, representing the Gulf's many resources and the five provinces bordering it. Dr. Suzuki also initiated a vibrant call to action to protect the Gulf of St. Lawrence and its ecosystem and communities by reading a statement titled "The Declaration of the Defenders of the Saint-Lawrence."

Dr. Suzuki and Georges Stroumboulopoulos were at the Magdalen Islands to film a special online segment that will be posted on the CBC's website in late May or early June. The main objective of the web segment is to raise Canadians' awareness of the Gulf's importance and the risks associated with oil and gas drilling.

"The Gulf of St. Lawrence is one of the planet's most precious and unique ecosystems," declared Dr. Suzuki. "Nature cannot be forced to conform to human borders and economy. Instead, we must maintain its health and subordinate our interests to the gulf."

In order to educate the public about the interdependence between citizens and the St. Lawrence River, the David Suzuki Foundation launched a new campaign last month, "The St. Lawrence: Our Living River". The campaign will offer individuals the opportunity to reconnect with the St. Lawrence River and Gulf by taking one or several of eight "David Suzuki Blue Actions" or by participating to an activity in their community on June 10th, the first-ever St. Lawrence Action Day.

"A very strong current passed between Dr. Suzuki and the people of the Islands. His visit and his support provided a wave of hope to the people in the community, who must continue to mobilize our neighbours in the Atlantic Provinces to protect the Gulf of St. Lawrence and its precious and renewable resources," commented Danielle Giroux, President of Attention FragÏles and spokesperson for the St. Lawrence Coalition.

The public and coastal communities surrounding the Gulf can show their collective support to protect the Gulf by purchasing a miniature version of the symbolic flag that was hoisted on Old Harry Beach by Dr. Suzuki. As well, individuals are invited to send a letter to tell the government to protect the St. Lawrence Gulf from oil and gas development and to prevent disastrous spills.

To view a web segment of the flag-raising ceremony and to watch Dr. Suzuki read the Declaration of the Defenders of the St. Lawrence Gulf, visit: http://www.davidsuzuki.org/issues/oceans/projects/saint-lawrence/help-us-protect-the-gulf-of-saint-lawrence/

To send a letter to tell the government to protect the Gulf, visit: http://action.davidsuzuki.org/fr/st-laurent

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: The photo accompanying this release is also available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/


For further information:

For more information on the "Our Living River" campaign, visit: www.davidsuzuki.org/fr/st-laurent

For more information on the St. Lawrence Coalition, visit: http://www.coalitionsaintlaurent.ca/en/coalition

To view the CBC's web segment (available shortly) visit: http://www.cbc.ca/strombo/

For more information:

Manon Dubois
Communications Specialist
David Suzuki Foundation - Québec
Tel. : 514 316-4646 ext. 104
Cell. : 514 679-0821

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