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Muskoka Brewery and Evergreen launch Fresh Water Grant program

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Muskoka Brewery and Evergreen, a leading not-for-profit in urban sustainability, are partnering on a new program to protect Ontario’s biodiversity and fresh water sources.

The Muskoka Brewery & Evergreen Fresh Water Grant Project will empower three non-profit organizations to restore native plants in riparian, wetland and shoreline areas, collect water quality data points, and engage the public in the care of local water systems.

Muskoka Brewery will donate $24,000 to help fund their projects and realize a shared goal of stewarding 6300 km2 of watershed, engaging 300 volunteers and planting 50 native plants.

“As a brewery lucky enough to be based in Muskoka, we draw so much inspiration from the natural wilderness that surrounds us,” says Gary McMullen, President, Muskoka Brewery. “We want to do our part to ensure Ontario’s lakes, rivers, trees and shorelines are preserved and protected for future generations to come. Clean, safe water is vital for our beer and the communities we serve.”

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The 2016 Fresh Water Grant Recipients are:

  • Swimmable Lake Ontario Project,  Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, Toronto
    Currently, 97% of Toronto’s waterfront is not monitored and 100% of the Toronto Harbour is not monitored. This lack of water quality data in Toronto is problematic given that Toronto has one of the busiest recreational harbours in North America. Through the Swimmable Lake Ontario Project, Waterkeeper is sampling the 25 most popular recreation zones on the waterfront for bacteria and plastics to determine the current state of the water. A report will be released this fall.
  • WAIT (Wetland Access Inspiration Trail), Muskoka Conservancy, Bracebridge
    Wetlands play a critical role in maintaining Muskoka’s amazing water quality. Through the WAIT (Wetland Access Inspiration Trail) Project, Muskoka Conservancy will work to protect wetlands and inspire people to love wetlands through education.
  • What’s in Your Water Project, Ottawa Riverkeeper, Ottawa
    The presence of microbeads in our oceans has been well documented, but less so in rivers. Through the What’s in Your Water Project, Ottawa Riverkeeper will bring the issue of microbead pollution to the National Capital Region and ignite a public dialogue around microplastics.

Muskoka Brewery employees, along with the public, will participate in grant program events as citizen scientists, sampling and evaluating water quality, removing invasive plant species and restoring biodiversity by planting native plant species.

“Evergreen in partnership with Muskoka Brewery is committed to engaging the public in issues that affect our water quality,” says Geoff Cape, CEO, Evergreen. “Fresh water is an integrated part of Canadians’ everyday lives. We swim in it, we paddle through it, we skate on it, we admire its beauty and we drink it—this is why safeguarding our sources of fresh water is vital to the health of our cities. We would like to thank Muskoka Brewery for their support in helping to ensure clean water now and for the future of Canadian cities.”

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You can learn more about the grant program and this year’s Fresh Water Grant recipients here. For updates and news please follow the hashtag #FreshWaterFreshBeer.

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