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Claire Pollock-Hall and Avery Deboer-Smith of Living Lakes Canada recently attended the Living Lakes International Conference in Valencia, Spain, with the support of CBEEN’s Professional Development Bursary Program.

Claire shared that “The 15th International Living Lakes Conference in 2019 focused on Wetland Conservation both within Spain and around the world through its various partner organisations. The networks that exist around the world allow other non-profits to continue to make positive changes through supporting one another, making connections and learning and growing from one another’s challenges and successes. It is through these shared experiences that we can is how we can all make a positive difference as a team, which was evident through this conference.”

Avery Deboer-Smith reflected that “The Living Lakes Canada team learned about climate change impacts and water systems around the world, from peat extraction in England releasing carbon emissions to the mining impacts on lakes and wetlands in Mongolia, to how climate change and population pressures have impacted water quality and invasive species resulting in the population decline of the manatee population in Cameroon, Africa.”

She also shared that “There were many positive and innovative solutions and collaborations presented. One example was how an organization in India trained citizen scientists to monitor and assist mangrove reforestation, as well as developed economic incentives to help support the local economies. An organization from Colombia shared success stories about cost-effective green filters developed to improve water quality in locations around the world. In my opinion, the Living Lakes Canada delegates left the conference feeling more connected and empowered due to support from the global Living Lakes network, which connects concerned and engaged water stewards from around the world who are addressing water and climate issues.”

Based on their experience, Avery & Claire recommend the following resources for CBEEN Members:


For more information on Living Lakes Canada, visit

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