CHERYL LYON – Some folks call their local neighbourhood, the ‘hood.’ To be really cool, we might even call it our “shed” if we think of the Peterborough region in terms of its “watershed.”
Now the word “watershed” can mean a crisis event or a time of turning toward a new course of action or situation. Kind of appropriate for our time of climate crisis. The watershed we mean here is the area of land that contains a common set of streams and rivers that are connected to a larger body of water (river, lake or ocean.) See the Otonabee Region Conservation Authority graphic. Everything in a watershed is connected. Upstream actions affect downstream conditions.
The Peterborough area watershed is a bioregion of distinctive and interacting life systems formed by water, geology, and climate with its own unique biodiversity. It is relatively self-sustaining while intimately connected to surrounding watersheds.
This natural watershed deeply shapes our local psyche, culture and economy. Its beauty feeds our spirits, inspires artists, and supports our very existence here. A lot of human activity – urban sprawl, industrial extraction, pollution of waterways – despoils this exquisite gift leaving us vulnerable and diminished. And there are great ongoing efforts to preserve it e.g. Otonabee Conservation’s Water Programs that monitor and protect the natural watershed or Green Communities Canada.
Learn how to make your own home and property part of a healthy watershed through Peterborough GreenUP.
Water is foundational in all our local responses to the Climate Emergency: in urban planning, farm management, recreation, public health, food supply – everything! As the local indigenous elder-led Sacred Water Circle reminds us, “water is life.”
Let’s get active to ensure strong protection of Water in our local City and Township climate change adaptation/mitigation plans, by knowing what’s planned e.g. here and here and adding your voice, for instance here.
Let’s keep the “shed” healthy and blue!