What We’re Talking About

Partner Spotlight: Ocean Wise

We asked Nicole Straughan, Vice President of Youth & Education at Ocean Wise a series of questions to delve into her efforts empowering young leaders who are passionate about ocean conservation. 

Nicole offered invaluable insights into the intersection of ocean conservation and climate action, highlighting the pivotal role and opportunities for youth in addressing these urgent issues. Additionally, she shed some light on skill gaps within the industry and outlined diverse pathways for youth who are looking to build capacity and break into this sector. Nicole also dispelled common misconceptions and what she wishes more people knew about ocean conservation!  

 Innovation Leading with Technology: Co-creating a more sustainable future. Interview feat. ABB Canada & the Academy for Sustainable

June 7, 2023 – Watch ABB Canada and the Academy for Sustainable Innovation (ASI) in an interview hosted by Leading Change to explore a future vision of innovation and opportunity for young leaders to leverage technology to build a more sustainable, equitable, and just future. 

Biboye (Bo) Aganaba, Leading Change’s former Executive Director is joined by Taylor Stimpson (Program Manager, Academy for Sustainable Innovation) and Katie Bessette (Country HR Manager, ABB Canada) for an incisive conversation about building capacity, collaboration, courage, curiosity, and care.  

Katie shared how ABB’s core make space for young leaders to challenge the status quo and make a positive change in the world. Taylor also shared how ASI’s work is helping individuals and organizations take action on the multiple crises that young people are facing.  

Leading Change Youth Roundtable: The Circular Economy

October 8, 2021 – After the 2021 World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF), circularity remained a top-of-mind topic for discussion among leaders in sustainability the world over. Building on the role Leading Change played as an official WCEF Studio, post-forum we gathered a group of young sustainability leaders to talk about their perspectives on the circular economy and the future.

This conversation is the first in a new series of roundtables from Leading Change.

Water in Canada: A Vision for 2050

By Alan Shapiro, Director of Foresight Canada’s waterNEXT network and Bo Simango, CEO and Co-Founder of Aquafort

September 8, 2021 – It’s been said that if climate change is the shark, then water is its teeth. From flooding and drought to ocean acidification and coastal erosion, we are already seeing these impacts unfold across Canada and around the world. Inevitably, impacts are never isolated to a single Earth system. The complex web of relationships that defines our water, energy, and food systems–known as the water-energy-food nexus–means that the security of one cannot be achieved without also investing in the other two. The collective health of these systems provides a necessary foundation for community well-being, economic prosperity, and reconciliation.

What does a net-zero 2050 mean for water in Canada? In its simplest form, the future we envision for water is sustainable, secure, and equitable.

A Five-Point Plan for Canada to Reach Net-Zero by 2050 

By Phil De Luna, Green Party of Canada Candidate for Toronto-St. Paul’s

August 11, 2021 – I have spent my entire career developing technologies to help decarbonize Canada. It started with my PhD in Materials Science & Engineering at the University of Toronto, where I discovered new renewable ways to convert carbon dioxide into fuels and chemicals. From there I co-founded a venture, Team CERT, to scale that clean technology out of the lab and became a finalist in the Carbon XPRIZE. I joined the National Research Council of Canada as its youngest-ever Director where I built and led a $57M collaborative R&D program to develop made-in-Canada technologies for decarbonization. Along the way, I have studied, discovered, developed, funded, mentored, and advocated for the development and expansion of cleantech.

At some point on this journey, I had a realization – technology alone is not enough to get us to net-zero.

Canadian Communities Can Apply Now to Host Save Pond Hockey Events

May 26, 2021 – The Climate and Sport Initiative has launched a call for applications for communities to host Save Pond Hockey events featuring top athletes, funded in part by the Government of Canada.

Climate change is threatening the future of Canada’s favourite sports. The Climate and Sport Initiative shines a spotlight on the direct effect of climate change on the sports we love—and on our nation—and empowers us all to get in the game of preserving both.

So You Want to be a Cleantech Entrepreneur? Start Here.

June 30, 2020 – The times they are a-changin’. Millions of people on every continent marched in climate change protests last September. Leaders around the world are mobilizing to limit global warming to 1.5oC. More and more companies are committing to carbon-neutral targets. As we ramp up our climate ambition, innovative clean technology solutions are needed more than ever.

Five Tips on How to Launch your Sustainability Career During a Pandemic

By Megan Poss, Executive Director, Leading Change

May 26, 2020 – Over the last decade, I’ve had hundreds of conversations with students and young professionals seeking advice on how to “break into” the sustainability field. Although the COVID-19 economic and health crisis has placed unprecedented challenges on job seekers, it doesn’t change the fact that there are still many passionate, courageous and visionary people out there who are determined to land their dream sustainability job—or at the very least, take steps to get there.

While there is no single path or secret formula, I’ve learned a few tips and frameworks in my time supporting youth in sustainability that I would love to share with you. I recognize that, as a white, cis-gendered woman with an easy-to-pronounce name, privilege has been on my side in many job-seeking experiences. Knowing this, much of the advice I offer has been informed from listening and learning from young people who inspire me and mentors I admire who hold different identities, backgrounds and experiences from myself. I encourage you to research broadly, test different strategies and apply what works best for you.