UBC Graduate Research

Beyond fortress mentality : envisioning water and waste management facilites as a catalyst for place-based sustainability education in Metro Vancouver Ford, Bruce Gordon


This paper provides rationale and strategies for Metro Vancouver to develop and implement tours of water, wastewater and waste management facilities as part of its ongoing efforts to educate residents and advance sustainability. A review of place-based education, environmental education and learning in informal environments literature will reveal that community-embedded facility tours contribute to effective teaching and learning about sustainability. An overview of existing Metro Vancouver facility tours and education programs and established facility tour programs offered by the cities of Perth, Australia, Christchurch, New Zealand and Edmonton, Canada, illustrate numerous opportunities to enhance and improve facility tour education programs at Metro Vancouver. Recommendations and strategies for Metro Vancouver to advance sustainability by utilizing facilities as places for learning as part of a broader sustainability education strategy will be provided. Many of these recommendations are relevant to other cities interested in engaging residents through meaningful place-based sustainability education programs in their communities.

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