James Bay Sustainability Commons (JBSC) is a grassroot group formed in the neighbourhood of James Bay. We share a commitment to live more consciously in response to climate change. JBSC will work to strengthen and co-create community. We believe that, a sustainable community must constantly adjust to meet the current economic and social needs of its residents while ensuring that adequate resources remain for future generations. Our definition of sustainability includes social well-being, vibrant economy and a healthy environment for both humans and other species.
Our mission is to:
- Promote and facilitate Reducing, Recycling, Repairing and Re-Thinking
Reduce: choosing to lessen our carbon footprint
Recycle: choosing to re-use or change materials to extend their life
Repair: choosing to fix materials to extend their life line
Re-Think: choosing to research, explore and discover new or old ways of doing and seeing things.
- Raise awareness of the importance of practicing and learning about sustainability and to share simple and practical techniques for making a more sustainable and livable James Bay.
- Highlight community building and sustainability initiatives which could be applied in James Bay or inspire us.
- Develop an online resource to encourage members of the community to make informed sustainable choices
- Support sustainability by collaborating with individuals and other local or external organizations with compatible goals.
Resurrection of James Bay Sustainability Commons:
In February 2010, two of the co-founders Bill Wilson and Linda Chan decided to resurrect James Bay Sustainability Commons in response to the Victoria Transition Town Initiative taking off. At the Transition Town meeting on January 30th, over 100 people gathered to form 18 working groups including Vibrant Communities and Food (Projects: Spring Ridge Commons and Capital Nut Project) of which Bill and Linda are a part of.
Local action is a key component of the Transitions Initiative and the James Bay Sustainability Commons is committed to help with positive action at the neighbourhood level.
Upcoming: Work Party at Spring Ridge Commons (January 26)
Recent or Current JBSC Activity:
History of James Bay Sustainability Commons:
In 2008, inspired by a discussion course on Choices for Sustainable Living offered by The Canadian Earth Institute, an affiliate of the Northwest Earth Institute in Portland, Stan Horner, Colleen Woods, Bill Wilson and Linda Chan co-founded James Bay Sustainability Commons (JBSC) to promote environmentally sustainable choices in James Bay.. Stan Horner and Linda Chan also developed a seedwiki site with a focus on the Reducing: one’s carbon footprint plus Recycling, Reusing and Repairing: to extend the materials life. Since mid-April 2010, Linda Chan has created this wordpress site incorporating content and photos originally on the seedwiki site.
In 2008, JBSC also held the following five events: 1) Public Meeting with Guest Speaker: Kris Obrigewitsch of International Composting Corporation 2) Presentation by Paula Sobie of City Harvest titled “Converting Backyards to Viable Food-Producing Gardens”, 3) Introductory workshop “Growing Food in Small Spaces” with Geoff Johnson, Cornucopia Nursery 4) Sprouting Workshop with Raven , Salt Spring Yoga Centre, and 5) JBSC Booth at Festival of Families with Harald Wolf, Master Composter, The Greater Victoria Compost Education Centre giving a short presentation on Worm Composting.
This site is dedicated to the life and spirit of Stan Horner, a co-founder of the James Bay Sustainability Commons. Stan was a leading light in the area of sustainability as he was aware of the impact we were having on the earth before it was a widely understood concern and lived sustainably long before it was popular. He grew up on a farm: gardened and produced his own food. He used a bicycle to get around for more than 60 years. He constantly looked for ways to recycle, repair and re-use materials in his art and at home. After retiring from Concordia, he designed and built Souliterra, an earth-sheltered solar house in eastern Ontario. This is one example of his commitment to design with a sustainable focus. Stan’s artwork in Faculty art exhibitions at the University of Victoria often sported re-used or found materials. In a recent article written for the BC Art Teachers’ Journal titled “Readymades and the Art of Recycling”, he championed the ideas of Marcel Duchamp and art movements that encouraged “recycling, redesign, re-making and repairing”. While Stan will be sadly missed by family, friends and colleagues, his unshakable beliefs about sustainability, art and recycling leave us with a legacy well worth remembering and practicing.