People from around the entire Great Lake Basin will be gathering for the 2011 Conference “Saving the Great Lakes Forever” which kicks off on Friday, May 6, at 6:50 p.m. at the historic State Theater in downtown Traverse City.
Hosted by the Flow for Water Coalition, the Great Lakes Water Studies Institute at Northwestern Michigan College and Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation, the conference will focus on learning about the abuses and threats facing the Great Lakes. The conference will also provide solutions to stop these threats and to protect the citizens, communities, local agriculture, and businesses who depend upon the waters of the Great Lakes Basin.
Friday night’s kick-off will feature a presentation by Maude Barlow, internationally recognized water advocate and former Senior Advisor to the President of the United Nations General Assembly. Ms. Barlow is the author of 16 books. Her address will offer a unique perspective on how each of us living within the Great Lakes Basin need to come together to protect the waters of the Great Lakes.
A screening of the award winning documentary “Tapped” (trailer below), an unflinching look at the plastic bottled water industry, will follow Ms. Barlow’s presentation and the evening will conclude with an afterglow party in the “Dome” at the Park Place Hotel for networking, live music, and refreshments.
The conference continues on Saturday, May 7, at Milliken Auditorium and Scholar Hall on the campus of Northwestern Michigan College. Registration opens at 8:00 a.m. Welcome and introductions begin at 8:30 a.m.
Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director of Food and Water Watch and one of the world’s leading experts on water, energy, food and the environment, will speak at 9:00 a.m. Her address will be followed by breakout workshop sessions on a variety of water-related topics. The event will conclude with an expert roundtable discussion: Solutions for Saving the Waters of the Great Lakes Basin.
“We are incredibly excited to hold this conference here and to be able to have presentations from both Maude Barlow and Wenonah Hauter. They will provide a dynamic wake-up call to everyone interested in protecting our Great Lakes,” said Traverse City attorney, Jim Olson, who also serves as Executive Director of the Flow for Water Coalition.
“We take our incredible natural beauty and abundance for granted, but there are very real threats facing the Great Lakes Basin.” Olson continued, “If we don’t protect these majestic waters now, the Great Lakes could be lost for our future generations. Our goal is to build deep citizen awareness and provide solutions to make sure that doesn’t happen.”
Tickets & more information are available at www.flowforwater.org or by calling 231-432-0103.